Billboard magazine reports that weekly digital track sales have set a new record, with 47.7 million sold in the US between December 22-28, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

Christmas week sales were 126 percent higher than the previous week - suggesting Christmas gifts of Apple iPods and download gift cards.

Total US digital track sales in 2008 were over a billion - up 27 percent year on year.

Apple iTunes Logo 200

Apple's iTunes Music Store is still the number-one digital download service, but Amazon MP3, which was initially launched in the US last year, has recently opened in the UK - offering over 3 million Digital Rights Management (DRM)-free songs which are encoded at 256kbps (double the 128Kbps rate of the Apple iTunes Store's copy-protected restricted tunes) and can be played back on any device that supports MP3, transferred to digital libraries such as Apple iTunes and even burnt to CD.

Amazon MP3 review