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TV Guide Will Feature Downloads Column

Recognizing that multiplatform TV has hit the mainstream, Gemstar-TV Guide's program listings and recommendations magazine, TV Guide, will launch a new weekly column called "Downloads" in its May 1st issue.

The column will provide recommendations of TV programs that are newly available for download or online viewing each week, alongside information on where to find those programs (e.g. on broadcasters' Web sites, on video portals such as Google Video or AOL's In2TV, on Apple's iTunes Store, or on various mobile phone platforms).

"The digital age has sparked a time-shift/place-shift phenomenon in television program viewing choices," said TV Guide's editor-in-chief, Ian Birch. "Today, we all have the ability to watch many of our favorite programs on our video iPods, or our personal computers. Since television programs are increasingly available and delivered to viewers in many different ways, we wanted to take the lead in providing our readers -- all enthusiastic television viewers -- the information they need to maximize their viewing experience, wherever that experience may take place."

The debut "Downloads" column recommends the four primetime shows -- "Desperate Housewives," "Commander in Chief," "Lost," and "Alias" -- that ABC is now offering free of charge on its Web site, or for $1.99 per episode on Apple's iTunes; it also recommends various TV series that are available for free via streaming video on AOL's In2TV service, including "Kung Fu," "Falcon Crest," and "Wonder Woman; and various series that are available for download for $1.99 on Google video, including "The Twilight Zone," "The Brady Bunch," and "MacGyver."

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