The UK charts are heading for their biggest shake-up in over 50 years, as digital singles sales exceed those of physical product.

Reuters reports that the Official UK Charts Company may merge the singles and download charts next year. "Already between 200-250,000 singles are bought via music download services every week in Britain", it reports. This compares to sales of physical singles that "regularly drop below 400,000".

Digital music sales represent a fraction of total sales for the industry, though music industry insiders confirmed the full impact of changing music consumption models "have yet to be fully understood".

Discussing the merging of the charts, Charts Company manager, Paul Clifford, said: "In principle it's all been agreed. We're having to change with the times."