The UK’s Official Charts Company has taken the final step towards embracing the digitalisation of music. As of the 1st of March, the Official Albums Chart will include audio streams for the first time.
Since the UK Official Chart began in 1956, the way we consume music has changed drastically, and the move reflects a huge increase in the number of streams in the UK. Streaming has doubled over the past year, from 25 million streams a day in January 2014 to 50 million in January 2015.
During 2012 there were 3.7 billion audio streams in the UK, a number which increased to 7.5 billion in 2013 and just under 15 billion in 2014.
The streaming data will be collected from Spotify, Deezer, Napster, Google Play, O2 Tracks, Rara, Rdio and XBox Music.
“The Official Charts Company’s mission is to compile the most accurate, reliable and up-to-date charts around, and in 2015 that means reflecting the popularity of streaming, alongside downloads, vinyl and – still the most popular album format – the CD,” said Official Charts Company chief executive Martin Talbot. “Initial indications are that the impact on actual chart positions will be modest to begin with, but we expect this to grow as streaming becomes increasingly popular.”
The inclusion of streaming data in the album chart follows the addition of steamed music to the singles chart in June last year. The Official Chart Company will be using new formula to ensure “the rundown continues to reflect the popularity of the albums themselves, rather than just the performance of one or two smash hit singles.”
The first Official Album Chart incorporating streaming data will be released on Sunday 1st of March