Bebo, the teen social networking site, has struck a deal with Apple Computers to allow its 8.8 million users to connect directly to the iTunes online store.
The new service will offer record labels and artists opportunities to build fan bases via the Bebo network and generate and track new revenue streams. It also means that users will be able to discover, share and buy music from iTune legitimately as well as access exclusive content.
Bebo president international Joanna Shields says the deal means Bebo subscribers will have access to the “world’s most popular music download service”.
She adds: “Bebo bands will also benefit hugely from the deal, helping unsigned artists get discovered, and established artists to attract more fans and sell more records.”
It will also allow users to buy music directly from bands’ profiles if their music is available on the iTunes website. There are more than 500,000 musicians registered on Bebo so this deal means users can discover new music while artists can build their fan base.
Each week Bebo users will be rewarded with a free digital download throughout its “Free Single Saturday” promotion. It will feature across the Bebo site and aims to build on the success of iTunes’ Single of the Week, which helped to establish newcomers such as Mika, Paolo Nutini and Kate Walsh.