Gemstar-TV Guide International, Inc. and the Home Electronics Division of Hitachi America, Ltd., a subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd. have signed a multi-year licensing agreement under which Hitachi haslicensed the right to incorporate TV Guide On Screen, Gemstar-TV Guide’s interactive program guide (IPG) for the consumer electronics arena, into Hitachi digital televisions in North America. Withthe addition of Hitachi, Gemstar-TV Guide now licenses its consumer electronics IPG and technology to more than a dozen of the top consumer electronics manufacturers worldwide.

TV Guide On Screen is built directly into consumer electronics products, providing consumers with the industry’s most advanced IPG with no additional subscription fee. The most widely-available IPG for consumers using CableCARD(TM) products, TV Guide On Screen allows viewers with digital-cable ready TVs, recorders and set-top boxes to enjoy the convenience and features of an IPG while using CableCARD technology. CableCARD technology allows viewers to receive digital cable television without a set-top box.

“With the implementation of ‘plug & play,’ there is broad recognition of the importance and benefit of offering consumers Gemstar-TV Guide’s IPG for CE products,” said Doug Macrae, president, TV Guide Consumer Electronics. “Hitachi delivers innovative digital technologies to consumers and we’re pleased to help heighten their customers’ satisfaction with an easy-to-use IPG that will help consumers navigate their television choices, in an increasingly complex entertainment environment.”

“As a leading manufacturer of high-definition televisions, Hitachi’s goal is to provide customers with high performance products that are easy to use.” said Leo Delaney, vice president, marketing, Hitachi America, Ltd., Home Electronics Division. “The integration of Gemstar-TV Guide with Hitachi televisions is a natural fit, as it is an ongoing priority for us to offer our customers access to new developments in the TV industry.”

Under the terms of its agreement with Hitachi, Gemstar-TV Guide receives license fees based upon the number of units sold that include the licensed technology.

Gemstar-TV Guide adds Hitachi to a growing list of licensees for its consumer electronics guides and guide technology that includes: JVC, LG (Zenith), Matsushita (Panasonic), Mitsubishi, Philips, Pioneer, Samsung, Sharp, Sony, Thomson (makers of the RCA, GE and Scenium brands), TiVo, and Toshiba.

Built directly into consumer electronics products, including digital televisions, digital video recorders (DVRs) and DVD recorders, TV Guide On Screen offers interactive on-screen program listings from TV Guide, the most trusted name in program listings, that enable viewers to quickly and easily navigate, sort, select, and schedule television programming for viewing and recording, all with simple remote control commands.

TV Guide On Screen’s patented technology delivers continually updated program listings to users, regardless of whether they receive their television signal via cable or over-the-air broadcast. TV Guide On Screen is accessed by simply plugging in the television or recording device and activating the guide through an express set-up process. It requires no subscription or phone connection.