Apple has revealed that its iTunes Store has reached the 10 billion mark in the number of songs downloaded.

A counter on the company's home page hit the 10 billion mark at 9:43pm yesterday - approximately 6 years and 10 months after the store first opened in the US.

Back then it was known as the iTunes Music Store and served only music, but it has since expanded to include video, TV shows and podcasts.

The customer who made the 10 billionth download will receive a $10,000 (£6,533) iTunes gift card from Apple, the company said.

That's roughly enough money to fill an iPod Touch to capacity with music from the store - a generous gift for any music lover, but not as generous as the package on offer when the store hit its billionth download in 2006.

Then Apple offered a similar gift card but also a 20in iMac, 10 60GB iPods and a music-school scholarship set up in the winner's name.

The most downloaded song of the 10 billion is The Black Eyed Peas' 'I Gotta Feeling', according to a ranking published by Apple.

The band's 'Boom Boom Pow' scored the number-three song, giving it two songs in the top 20.

Singing sensation Lady GaGa had the second and sixth positions with 'Poker Face' and 'Just Dance' and Katy Perry also managed to get two songs in the ranking, with 'I Kissed A Girl' and 'Hot N Cold' at positions 13 and 15 respectively.

Apple didn't disclose the number of downloads per song.

See also: Apple iTunes app store exceeds 3bn downloads