Royalties from digital radio services contributed a further $387.2m to streaming revenues, which means that the streaming sector was 10 times more lucrative for the industry than vinyl sales.
However, the struggle to monetise free-to-use music platforms, which are supported by ad revenues, reignites the ongoing debate about whether streaming services can provide a viable source of income for artists and writers in the music industry.
Proponents are hopeful: Spotify, the highest-valued start-up in Europe, doubled its paying customers in the last year from 10m to 20m, and Apple, which revolutionised the music industry with digital single downloads via iTunes, launched Apple Music this summer.
The vinyl resurgence saw UK sales of vinyl albums break through the million mark in 2014 for the first time in 18 years, with 1.3m vinyl LPs sold, prompting the Official Charts Company to launch a separate chart for vinyl records.
Despite the 52pc growth in vinyl sales – which still account for just 8pc of total music revenues – it’s clear that the future of the music industry is digital.
Total revenues from the digital music sector in the US rose 6pc to $2.3bn while physical sales dropped by 17pc to a relatively paltry $748m.