A new study done by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI)revealed that the number of legal music downloads tripled to 180 million in the first half of 2005 compared to the same period last year. The IFPI credits part of the surge to an increase in availability and affordability of broadband connections, faster computers, and an increase of ownership of portable media players. Illegal downloads rose by just 3%, from 870 mullion in January to 900 million.
According to a study by American market research firm, The NPD Group, which was released last month, U.S. residents downloaded 243 million songs from illegal sources and bought 26 million songs from online music stores. The reports stated that the main reasons for the decreasing growth of illegal downloads are fear of prosecution and the likelyhood of computers getting loaded up with spyware and viruses.