Adele’s ’25’ Officially, Effortlessly Shattered First-Week Sales Records

Adele on SNL
Watch her perform "Hello" and "When We Were Young."

We knew Adele’s 25 would be historic, we just didn’t know how historic.

Billboard has released the final first-week sales tally for Adele’s third album, and the results are insane: 25 moved 3.38 million copies its first week on shelves, obliterating the record (2.4 million in 2000) held by *NSYNC’s No Strings Attached. It even beat Hikaru Utada’s Distance, which had previously held the global record for selling 3 million copies in Japan during its first week.

Billboard has a further breakdown of 25’s jaw-dropping numbers, which include fun facts like:

  • 25 is the only album to sell at least 2 million copies in all of 2015
  • It is only the second album in U.S. history to move more than 2 million copies in one week
  • 1.71 million of the album’s sales came from good ol’ CDs (and 22,000 came from vinyl)
  • 25 sold 1.64 million digital copies, breaking the record held by Lady Gaga’s Born This Way, which moved 662,000 downloads in 2011.


In other words: holy f***ing sh*t. Congrats, Adele! Thank you for giving us the event album we so desperately, desperately needed.


Tags: 25, Adele, album sales