The typical trajectory for the price of any service or product is upwards, what with inflation ‘n all. But it seems there’s a notable exception to that general rule of thumb.

As news emerges that UK digital music sales have now passed the £1bn milestone, it also transpires that the average retail price of an album is now £7.32…a third less than a decade ago.

But that only tells part of the story. If retail prices had followed inflation, the average price of an album should be well over £14 now. So that’s effectively half the price of what it perhaps otherwise could’ve been.

The data from BPI reveals a lot more about the current status of music sales in the UK.

Whilst the magic billion mark has now been surpassed in terms of digital sales since 2004, a third of these sales took place in 2010. Evidence, if any was needed, that the UK is has well and truly woken up to the digital revolution.

21 by Adele is the UK’s biggest selling digital album of all time, overtaking The Fame by Lady Gaga and Only By The Night by Kings of Leon.  34 albums have now sold more than 100,000 copies digitally, with 6 of the top 10 represented by UK artists.

The UK’s top-three selling digital tracks since sales began in 2004 are as I Gotta Feeling by Black Eyed Peas, Sex On Fire by Kings Of Leon and Poker Face by Lady Gaga.  74 digital tracks have now sold more than 500,000 copies in the UK to date.

Geoff Taylor, BPI Chief Executive, said:

“The strength of British music means there is fantastic potential for further growth. Adele’s 21, the biggest seller of 2011, is already the UK’s biggest-selling digital album of all time. The hard work done by UK record labels in pushing forward the digital music market is paying off for consumers, digital retailers and the music community.”

So, despite music piracy still being an obvious concern as evidenced by this file-sharing conviction earlier in the week, it seems that the UK music industry is looking a lot better than some reports would have you imagine.

And at £7.32 an album, maybe all music-lovers were looking for was value for money? Just a thought.