PBS debuts iPad app with copious amounts of programming

You want some REAL TV Everywhere? Check out PBS.org, and while you're at it, download their new iPad app as well. Then, watch the first full episode of the multi-part series Circus in advance of its broadcast premiere. That's right, before it makes it to the TV screen. But, while there's plenty of current content, you'll want to dig a little to find some of the real classics, like In Julia's Kitchen, where you can watch as guest chefs make their signature dishes along with the iconic Childs. It's really wonderful.

The public broadcaster just PBS iPad applaunched its new website in beta, and kicked out the iPad app as well, allowing users to watch PBS programming and stay current with most of the broadcaster's series, as well as access local PBS station schedules, and stream a variety of content from the PBS archives. The broadcaster said an iPhone version of the app will be available in November, and said it is working to prioritize apps for other operating systems like Android.

The broadcaster said it's in the midst of re-encoding some of its content to make it play at higher quality levels than it's currently available.

PBS said the new digital products build on successful initiatives that have launched over the past 18 months and include the introduction of a local-national video player featuring more than 4,700 hours of full episodes, spanning all genres of the organization's renowned, award-winning programs. 

"During the last two years, we have reinvented our approach to serving the American public by becoming a multi-platform innovator, introducing industry-firsts such as the integration of interactive educational games into linear video and the use of augmented reality to teach science to pre-schoolers," said Jason Seiken, senior vice president, Interactive, Product Development and Innovation. "Built on public media's local-national model, this next generation of services delivers content in vital areas, such as news, the arts, and children's educational media to PBS.org's 20 million monthly users and across mobile devices."

PBS for iPad is designed for viewing full episodes from national programs, including Frontline, Nature, Nova, Masterpiece, Antiques Roadshow, PBS NewsHour, Need to Know, Secrets of the Dead, History Detectives and Austin City Limits.

The app also features web-original productions such as "Secret Life of Scientists" from NOVA scienceNOW and "FutureStates" from Independent Lens.

The PBS App for the iPhone and iPod touch will help viewers stay connected with their local station and will permit them to watch previews of the day's program highlights, video shorts, and full episodes. 

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