NBC Universal's Sci Fi Channel has launched a cross-channel promotion with TV Guide and iTunes to give away 1.4 million downloads of an episode of its popular "Battlestar Galactica" series using a code in the print version of TV Guide.
"If someone isn't already a fan, then we are confident that sampling this episode on iTunes will bring them to Sci Fi for more," said Blake Callaway, VP of brand marketing for Sci Fi Channel, in a statement.
Giving away samples of television programming on iTunes is becoming a regular tool in NBC Universal's kit. Recently, the network offered its new program "Conviction," along with a behind-the-scenes video and a music video of the show's theme, for download ten days before it debuted on TV.
The "Battlestar Galactica" episode, called "Downloaded," originally aired on Sci Fi Channel on February 24. The promotion is being used to drive viewers to the finale of the show's second season, which airs on March 10. Each of the 1.4 million newsstand copies of the latest TV Guide issue will feature a 12-digit code on the cover, which readers can enter at the iTunes Music Store to receive their free download.
Like other "Battlestar Galactica" episodes, "Downloaded" is available on iTunes for $1.99 without the promotion code. NBC Universal began offering several of its shows for download in the fall, following ABC's lead with shows like "Lost" and "Desperate Housewives," and "Battlestar Galactica" is consistently in the top 10 video downloads on iTunes.
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