According to 7 Digital, DRM-free downloads are outselling other formats by four to one where they are offered alongside protected WMA files. The company also claims consumers greatly prefer high-quality MP3s encoded at 320kbps rather than WMA or Apple’s AAC. The availability of DRM-free MP3s also seems to be encouraging consumer take-up of digital albums, with bundled album sales accounting for 70% of total MP3 downloads by value compared with just 46% of WMA.
And according to Ben Drury, MD of 7digital.com: “The MP3 format is also good for the music industry as a whole. As physical sales on the high-street and online continue to drop, it is vital that labels find a way to increase digital album sales to make up the shortfall. In order for music industry revenues to flourish again, all four majors need to get on board and make music available to the consumer in the format of their choice.”