Apple announced Wednesday that the company has now sold more than 25 billion songs from the iTunes Store since its inception in 2003. At its current pace, over 15,000 songs are downloaded from the store every minute.
Eddy Cue, Apple’s SVP of Internet Software and Services, described the company’s pleasure with reaching the milestone:
We are grateful to our users whose passion for music over the past 10 years has made iTunes the number one music retailer in the world. Averaging over 15,000 songs downloaded per minute, the iTunes Store connects music fans with their favorite artists, including global sensations like Adele and Coldplay and new artists like The Lumineers, on a scale we never imagined possible.
Wesley Schultz, guitarist and lead vocalist for The Lumineers, added his thoughts about how iTunes and the iTunes Store has dramatically changed the music industry:
In a lot of ways, iTunes has leveled the playing field for musicians. Whether you’re unsigned, indie, major, whatever—it’s the place most people go to buy digital music. iTunes doesn’t exclude any musicians simply because they’re not yet established or popular.
The iTunes Store hit the 10 billion download mark in February 2010 after reaching 1 billion downloads in February 2006. In related news, Apple announced in early January that over 40 billion apps had been downloaded from the App Store section of the iTunes Store.
As it has done in the past, Apple awarded a gift card to the user who downloaded the 25 billionth song. This time around, the winner was Phillip Lüpke from Germany and his download of “Monkey Drums” by Chase Buch netted him a €10,000 iTunes Gift Card.