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IFPI Predicts More Music to Mobiles

How things are changing. The 12th annual report of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) says mobile handsets are poised to take over from personal computers as the primary mechanism driving the music download industry. Apparently the increasing popularity and availability of 3G means that handset downloads will overtake PC downloads before the end of this year. The report chimes with the stance taken by most mobile operators. They have been claiming that this Christmas will at last be the time of the 3G boom. However, many of them also predicted that for last year and the year before and look what happened -- zilch. Last year the global music download market was worth about $500 million to the record industry and the that was split 50:50 between tracks taken from the Internet via PCs and those downloaded to 2.5G and 3G handsets. This year though, the balance will swing to mobiles. The arithmetic is simple. More people in more countries around the world own more mobile handsets than they do PCs, Internet connections and digital music players. Indeed the ratio in western Europe and parts of the Far East is 9 to 1.

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