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Streaming Is The New No. 1 Way To Listen To Music In The US

On-demand streams were the most popular way to listen to music in 2016 and accounted for 38 percent of all consumption.
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Last year was a turning point in the way Americans listen to music. For the first time, more songs were streamed online than downloaded.

According to a year-end report from Nielsen Music, there were more than 251 million on-demand audio streams in 2016 — that's 38 percent of last year's total music consumption.

Streams are replacing digital sales a lot faster than digital sales replaced physical items like CDs when they were first introduced.

Hip-hop and R&B really pushed the trend, making up nearly a fourth of audio played but 28 percent of streams. Eight of the top 10 most streamed songs were hip-hop or R&B.

Drake was the undisputed king of streaming in 2016. He released or was featured on four of the top 10 streamed songs of the year and racked up more than 5.4 billion streams.

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