Trending: Headphones 1, Speakers 0

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The Independent Culture

The days of sitting around the record player have fallen further into history, alongside fireside story-telling, as more music listeners seek solo aural satisfaction. Sales of headphones now outstrip those of speakers by almost two to one, according to the analysts, GfK, and Asda.

In the late 1990s, our preferences were evenly split. Is the unstoppable blooming of buds in the iPod age a sorry illustration of the demise of the family unit, or of our disposable culture (Asda boasts a pair of £1 headphones)? Or should we celebrate the rise of personal listening? Perhaps not until we banish from trains and buses headphones that think they're speakers...