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Apple iPod grabs 82% US retail market share

49 percentage points up on August 2002

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Apple's iPod took 82 per cent of the US retail hard drive-based digital music player market in August, adding 18 percentage points to its share during the preceding 12 months alone. Its share of the overall digital music player market is fractionally under 42 per cent.

So says US research firm NPD. August 2004's figure compares with a 64 per cent market share for August 2003 and a 33 per cent share in August 2002, figures cited in a Bloomberg story anticipating Apple's Q4 results, due this week.

iPod and Apple's other music products accounted for 16 per cent of Apple's $2.01bn Q3 2004 revenue, a figure that may well rise during Q4, not least thanks to an entire month's lost iMac sales. The iPod itself accounted for $249m of that $322m music-related revenue contribution.

Up to the end of Q3, Apple has sold 3.72m iPods. Earlier this year, UK-based market watcher Informa Media predicted Apple will have shipped 5m iPods by the end of 2004. It needs to ship 1.28m units during Q4 FY2004 and Q1 FY2005 - 640,000 in each quarter - to meet that target.

US research company In-Stat/MDR reckons some 10.4m hard drive-based music players will ship in calendar 2004, up from 2.1m last year. Apple is likely to account for at least 3m of those, based on Informa's forecast and existing Apple's sales, giving it at least 28 per cent of the world HDD player market. In-Stat/MDR reckons a further 7.6m Flash-based music players will ship this year, for a total volume of 18m digital music players. That figure will grow to 52.4m by 2007, the company forecasts.

Apple was recently claimed to be preparing a Flash-based iPod to tackle that sector of the digital player market. ®

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