Research In Motion Ltd (RIM), the maker of Blackberry smartphones, said its subscriber base in the UK had passed the 8 million milestone as it unveiled a new cloud-based music service in the country

Blackberry, once an dispensable executive accessory, has been winning younger subscribers attracted by its BBM messenger service.

However its share of the global market has dwindled in the face of competition from Apple Inc and other makers, particularly those running Google Inc's Android operating system.

Blackberry's reputation also suffered a blow in recent weeks from an extended breakdown of its email and messaging service which hit a large number of users globally.

Figures from market analyst Gartner released on Tuesday showed RIM's smartphone share dropped to 10 percent in the United States in the third quarter, its lowest so far.

The music service, which will cost 4.99 pounds a month, allows users to build a profile of 5O tracks which can be shared with friends using the BBM service, the company said.