Tesco takes on iTunes

MP3 store launches next month, games and movies to follow

Tesco Digital is a new service launching next month from the UK’s leading cost-cutting supermarket chain, selling competitively priced MP3s and threatening to shake up the online music market.

Described as "a one-stop shop for everybody’s entertainment needs", Tesco Digital extends the supermarket’s current online offering of music downloads, which have only been available in Windows Media format to date.

Games and movies soon

The bold move is described as the "beginning of a wider Tesco Digital strategy which will offer episodic TV, films and even games in the near future".

Graham Harris, commercial director at Tesco, describes Tesco Digital as, "more than a music download portal... we’re starting out with a comprehensive music offering, but customers can expect downloadable TV and films as well as games to buy very soon.

"Our music offering is just the start of an exciting journey for our customers - it really is a case of watch this space. We are delighted to be offering our customers MP3 download music for the very first time and our customers can expect to hear more news from us in the coming weeks and months as we develop our digital store."

May launch

Tesco Digital will offer 3.3 million music tracks, 1.6 million of those in MP3 format, from launch in May next month.

Exact details on pricing are to follow, but Tesco’s PR department assures us that the costs will be very competitive indeed.

Other supermarkets to follow suit?

TechRadar has contacted Waitrose, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons and Asda today to find out what plans the other five major UK supermarket chains have to launch their own branded online music, games and movie download stores. We are also awaiting responses to this news from the main high street and online entertainment retailers - Play.com, Amazon, HMV and Zavvi.