Music charts a mess as Apple’s iTunes Store discounts Adele, Carrie Underwood

“It’s hard to measure what’s actually number 1 when everything is a different price,” Roger Friedman reports for Showbiz411. “On the pop charts, pricing is now an issue as all the top hits are being offered at wildly conflicting ranges.”

“For example: iTunes has pumped up sales of Carrie Underwood’s new album by discounting it to an incredible $5.99,” Friedman reports. “The result is that ‘Storyteller’ is number 3 on the iTunes charts.”

“Meanwhile, Adele’s forthcoming ’25’ album is ranked as the number 1 album on both iTunes, where it’s selling for $10.99, and Amazon, where it’s the same price for the download,” Friedman reports. “So what’s doing better? The deep discounted albums or the highly price ones? …And who’s eating the cost of these discounts? The record companies take the hit to stimulate sales and chart position. But there’s no parity, just a free-for-all on the charts.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Discounting isn’t a new thing, but it seems pretty rare to see a top album discounted all the way down to $5.99.

“25” would be #1 at pretty much any reasonable price. Discounting it to $10.99 seems quite unnecessary.


    1. Why do Kindle books cost more than printed books? Something to do with sales tax / VAT. Possibly the same in this case.

      I know I recently bought a CD off Amazon with instant mp3 download because it was considerably cheaper than that buying it digitally off iTunes. Felt a bit dirty after though.

  1. The #1 song is the one that sells the most copies. How difficult is that to understand? It may not be the one that makes the most money, so the price is irrelevant. That isn’t just true on iTunes. For example, the Billboard Hot 100 is the “week’s most popular songs across all genres, ranked by radio airplay, audience impressions as measured by Nielsen Music, sales data as compiled by Nielsen Music, and streaming activity data provided by online music sources.” All sorts of different prices, but still just one music chart.

  2. When have the music charts ever filtered records according to price? Never.

    Now that technology allows flexible pricing, music can be priced low to buy bragging rights ( charted at no 7 etc ), or they can set a price to make money. It’s exactly the same as any other market where there is no price control.

  3. The article is stupid. Retailers have always monkeyed with price, especially if something was popular. That didn’t mean anything then, and it still means nothing now. If #1 in sales means #1 in sales, then it still means that now.

    Hey Showbiz411, fire this guy. You’d be better off paying a box of rocks.

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