Whitney Houston
Sales of Whitney Houston's songs soared since her death (Reuters) Reuters

Sony has apologised after the price of two Whitney Houston albums increased on Apple's iTunes store just hours after the singer's death.

Houston, 48, was discovered dead in a bath at a hotel in Beverly Hills. Soon after the news broke, the price of The Ultimate Collection and Whitney: The Greatest Hits increased on the British iTunes site.

The compilation The Ultimate Collection soared from £4.99 to £7.99 and Whitney: The Greatest Hits also went up from £7.99 to £9.99 for a few hours last weekend, according to reports.

Sony has now released a statement apologising for the increase, referring to the price hike as a "mistake".

"Whitney Houston product was mistakenly mispriced on the UK iTunes store on Sunday. When discovered, the mistake was immediately corrected. We apologise for any offense caused," read the statement, published on billboard.biz.

Sony executives, who spoke anonymously to The Times, explained that the jump in price was due to a British Sony employee and had not been authorised by the company.

Sales of Houston's albums and tracks have soared since her death.

Early figures have revealed that the singer could have as many as seven singles in the top 40 and 27 in the top 200, according to the Official Charts Company.

The album Whitney: The Greatest Hits is also set to re-enter the Official Albums Chart at number six.

Houston's funeral is scheduled to take place at the weekend in Newark's New Hope Baptist Church, New Jersey, where she sang in the choir as a child.