Tesco has launched an online music service in the UK.

The supermarket chain plans to offer more than 500,000 tracks for 79 pence a song. It will use Microsoft's Windows Media Player, which is compatible with a large proportion of portable players on the market, but not the iPod.

Tesco.com chief executive Laura Wade Gery told the BBC: "Music buying is changing. For the first time dads are spending more on music each week than their teenage sons."

"As the price of portable digital players falls, customers will demand more choice – that is what we are delivering," Gery added.

Songs will be available at www.tesco.com/downloads

This is not the first time a supermarket chain has joined the music download market. Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, opened a music download store last November.