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Adele album '25' could have record-setting sales upon debut

Adele's hotly anticipated new album,

Adele's hotly anticipated new album, "25," is out Friday, Nov. 20, 2015. In this Feb. 12, 2012 photo, she performs during the 54th annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles. Photo Credit: AP

Adele's "25" could be heading for the biggest sales week ever.

According to Billboard, her label Columbia Records is shipping 3.6 million copies of the album to stores Friday, the biggest initial shipment for an album since Jive Records sent out 4.2 million copies of 'NSync's "No Strings Attached" in 2000.

That album went on to sell 2.415 million copies in its first week, a record that Adele could seriously challenge, even though album sales have dropped significantly in the past 15 years.

Helping her cause is the fact that "25" will not be available on streaming services, according to The New York Times.

It's a strategy similar to Taylor Swift's "1989" album launch last year, which sold 1.287 million copies in a week, according to Nielsen SoundScan, and was not available on Spotify.

Swift's "1989" was a massive hit. To put "25" sales in perspective, industry observers expect Adele to sell nearly twice as many copies in the sales week that starts Friday.

The numbers appear in her favor. She sold 11.2 million copies of her last album "21" and the first single of "25," "Hello," sold 1.1 million copies in its first week, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

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