JupiterResearch on Wednesday reported that MP3 player sales will “reach critical mass” in 2005, helping to fuel demand for digital music services and stores. Apple shows no sign of losing momentum, said JupiterResearch VP and Research Director Michael Gartenberg.
“The iPod is a consumer phenomenon. Apple dominates this sector and will dominate portable MP3 player growth over the medium term,” said Gartenberg in a statement.
The company said that U.S. shipments of MP3 players will grow 35 percent in 2005 to 18.2 million, maintaining an annual compound growth rate of over 10 percent through 2010, when it will reach an installed base of 56.1 million units.
JupiterResearch predicts that MP3 players will reach a household penetration of 15 – 20 percent in the United States this year, the “critical mass” the company referred to. And that will, in turn, fuel further adoption of digital music services designed to work with these devices, like Apple’s iTunes Music Store.
The future growth of the market may well depend on flash-based players like Apple’s iPod shuffle, as well. JupiterResearch expects flash-based player sales to exceed the sales of hard drive-based players by 2007.
The full report, entitled ” Portable Music Device Forecast, 2005 to 2010,” is available to JupiterResearch subscribers.