From today (Friday 27 June), the official Classical Chart will take streamed music into account, with the results being published from 6 July onwards.
Pieces streamed on Spotify, Deezer, We7, Napster, 02 Tracks and Sony’s Music Unlimited will be added to the weekly count of classical music downloaded or bought each week.
After looking into how people are listening to their music, the company has found that classical music is streamed much more regularly than previously thought, with many record labels being pleasantly surprised by how often their releases get streamed.
The move comes at the same time as streaming has been announced for the Top 40 Singles Chart.
Chief executive of the Official Charts Company, Martin Talbot has said: ‘The singles chart in the UK has always been purely based on the sales of singles, whether it be downloads or CDs or cassettes or even 7-inch vinyl, so broadening that for the first time to incorporate audio streams is a significant event.’
He continued: ‘The chart has always evolved over 50 years to incorporate lots of different formats and the different ways people consume music and I suppose this is part of this evolution.’
According to figures from the BPI, the British recorded music industry's trade association, the income from streaming rose by 30 per cent in 2011 and the number is expected to increase over the next year.
To keep the process fair it has been decided that 100 streams will be the equivalent of one single purchase or download.