45,000 people surveyed in the fourth annual Music Choice European Music Census. The results reveal:
o 10% increase in female downloaders in 2005
o Women now downloading more tracks than men
o One in ten female users now spend over 70% of their total music budget on downloads, compared to just 2% in 2004
o 40% of Brits now downloading on a regular basis
o Downloading still primarily used to purchase single tracks rather than albums
o Percentage of British population downloading now 3rd highest in Europe – up from 7th last year

Results from the fourth annual European Music Census reveal a significant increase in female downloading in the UK. In the past year there has been an increase of almost 10% in the number of females now downloading music. This compares to an increase of only 5% among men.

While the total number of men downloading music is more than women (44% compared to 34%), the ladies are catching up fast; the average female downloader is a more frequent user than their male counterpart with 20% of females downloading over 20 tracks a month compared to only 18% of men.

Moreover, one in ten women is spending over 70% of their entire music budget on downloading, as opposed to 8% of men. However, men continue to have a higher overall music budget, with the average man spending £6.40 more per month on music than women.

The overall percentage of people downloading in the UK has grown from 31% to 40% in the past year and has become the primary method of music acquisition for over one in ten UK music fans. However, 63% of download users still download less than ten tracks per month, suggesting that downloading is used mainly to access single tracks as opposed to entire albums.

The Music Census results highlight how the UK has seen a higher increase in downloading when compared to its European neighbours, rising from seventh position in last year’s census to the number three spot in 2005.

European Download Chart:
Percentage of population that download:
Germany – 69%
Norway – 62%
UK – 40%
Sweden – 35 %
Italy – 30%
Denmark -24%
France – 17%

Percentage of users downloading 50+ tracks per month:
Norway – 32%
Sweden – 12%
Italy – 8%
UK – 7%
Denmark -5%
France – 3%
Germany – 2%

Despite the rise in downloading in the UK, the census also reveals a number of factors turning new consumers off from accessing download sites.

The most frequently quoted were:
1. Ease of use – 36%
2. Cost – 34%
3. Size of music catalogue -18%
4. Technical reliability – 10%

Over 45,000 music fans across nine countries (Denmark, UK, France, Germany, Sweden, Spain, Norway, Finland and Italy) completed the Music Choice European Music Census 2005 between September and November 2005. 8,000 were surveyed in the UK.