Emerging Technologies

Charted: Here's what's driving the digital media revolution

A phone with multiple different media apps

Increasing numbers of people want to be able to access their music and films on all devices. Image: Pexels/Pixabay

Felix Richter
Data Journalist, Statista
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  • Music and video streaming services were treated with suspicion upon arrival but are now the main means of accessing both.
  • Just 1 in 4 US adults still prefers hard copies of films, books or music these days, according to Statista consumer insights.
  • While 54% of respondents to the survey said they want to access their music/movies on all their devices.

When the first music and video streaming services were introduced around 2010, they were greeted with a healthy dose of skepticism. They wouldn’t be reliable enough, the sound/image quality would be inadequate, and after all, who could afford a mobile data plan generous enough to stream music and video content all the time?

Especially music aficionados and die-hard film fans didn’t really know what to make of the new arrivals. Would their carefully curated CD and DVD collections soon become obsolescent, worthless even? Well, a little more than a decade later, the answer is a resounding yes, at least in most cases.

In the end, convenience always wins. And while it’s a nice idea to dust off the old CD collection and reminisce a little, that probably won’t happen and if it would, half the CDs wouldn’t work anymore. And where would you even find a CD player these days?


How is the World Economic Forum fostering a sustainable and inclusive digital economy?

According to findings from Statista Consumer Insights, just 1 in 4 U.S. adults still prefers hard copies of films, books or music these days. More than twice as many respondents, 54 percent, said that they want to access their music/movies on all their devices, one of the many advantages that streaming services offer.

Have you read?
This chart shows what Americans think about digital media usage
This chart shows what Americans think about digital media usage. Image: Statista.
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