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What WILL TiVo Announce Tonight? What SHOULD they Announce?

By Stephen Hopkins
Will TiVo's major announcement live up to the hype?


TiVo is announcing the latest in DVR technology tonight at 6 p.m., saying Inventing the DVR was just a warmup.


Rumors and leaks abound, but it looks like the announcement is going to be a combo of new hardware and software.


There were reports of Premier and Premier XL SKUs showing up in Best Buy's computer system. BusinessWeek reported on a new cross-platform search that would allow users to search TV listings, Netflix, YouTube, Amazon, and other supported services in one swoop (similar to the TiVo Search Beta currently available to Series3 and HD users).


All of the above sounds great, but it's not going to revolutionize the DVR market.

MORE
 

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Tivo need to take multiple existing Tivo nodes and consolidate them into a distributed network. Meaning that if you have 2 uintes they create a virtual unit with 4 tuners and front ends on 2 TVs. You can add season passes from either unit and the system will use any available tuner to record the show then deliver it to whatever hard drive you designate... or duplicate it across all units. It should be able to migrate shows from unit to unit when hard drives approach capacity.


Those features would be a good start at taking the OS to the next level.
 

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Oh snap... How about the tivo being not only your set top box, but also your wireless gateway, just tell the cable company the mac address for the gateway side when they deliver your cablecards, set it up and turn in your old modem; this way it isn't just connected wirelessly to the internet it is the internet, giving you highest bandwidth when streaming content. Four Ethernet ports at the main viewing area is nice for game systems and other internet enabled devices. Of course an internet content aggregator would be lovely, and if done properly may just eliminate the need for the cablecards all together. Oh the cablecos are going to hate me.
 

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6pm past, now what?
 

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Since this thread is inexplicably vacant, here's a brief summary from the Washington Post "Tech Crunch":

Matt Burns

TechCrunch.com

Tuesday, March 2, 2010; 2:17 PM


Finally. We finally have new TiVo models. The TiVo HD XL launched a long year and half ago and the UI is even older. But that's behind us now, the TiVo Premier is here and it's (nearly) everything we need in a DVR. Everything is different: the hardware, the interface, even the remote. (QWERTY!)With the TiVo Premier comes a new interface that's been designed to present web videos just like live TV. But it's not just web videos. The whole system was reworked to allow users better access to their locally-stored content as well. Premiere's search function queries all sources and will find content whether it's on a web video or live TV. Pandora and FrameChannel join Netflix and YouTube as built-in apps."
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edgar_in_Indy /forum/post/18238480


Since this thread is inexplicably vacant, here's a brief summary from the Washington Post "Tech Crunch":

Matt Burns

TechCrunch.com

Tuesday, March 2, 2010; 2:17 PM


Finally. We finally have new TiVo models. The TiVo HD XL launched a long year and half ago and the UI is even older. But that's behind us now, the TiVo Premier is here and it's (nearly) everything we need in a DVR. Everything is different: the hardware, the interface, even the remote. (QWERTY!)With the TiVo Premier comes a new interface that's been designed to present web videos just like live TV. But it's not just web videos. The whole system was reworked to allow users better access to their locally-stored content as well. Premiere's search function queries all sources and will find content whether it's on a web video or live TV. Pandora and FrameChannel join Netflix and YouTube as built-in apps."

Meh.The tivo hardcores will get it, but everyone else already has something for all this.
 

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The Premier has more powerful hardware, more recording capacity and a new HD interface. There are neat incremental upgrades such as the optional QWERTY remote, the wireless N adapter and the calibration wizard on the XL. Missing was the compelling feature to put it over the top and make us all want to run out and buy it. Alas, there is still hope! During the press conference it was stated that there would be ways for developers to build applications. However, very little information was shared about how this would happen. What will compel folks to develop for this box and how will they do it? All we really know is that Adobe's new flash platform for set top boxes is being used. There were also references to some social networking and user profile functionality in the screen shots but no discussion of it.


I am a little skeptical about the new interface. I know everyone is excited that it utilizes the screen real estate that a HD display offers. However, it just feels too busy to me. There is something to be said of TiVo's current easy-to-use and straighforward interface. It's nice how the new interface connects TV data together (i.e. what other shows has this actor been in). I've only seen screenshots so far (and played with the TiVo Search Beta) so I will reserve final judgment until I see it in person.


The real question is the TiVo Premier worth buying today? The answer depends on who you are.


TiVo Series 1 and 2 Owners: It's a compelling upgrade given the your old TiVo's hard drive may die any day now. You will be able to record two HD shows at once. You gain access to services such as Amazon Video On Demand and Netflix. Tivo is giving a 50% discount to add Lifetime service to existing owners.


Series 3 Owners: You are not able to do much more than you can do today. The Series3 TiVo is aesthetically superior to the Series4. Best to wait to see if they can leverage the new platform and come out with some cool apps.


RCN Subscribers: Apparently, there will be a RCN specific version of the box released this summer that will have access to OnDemand. With the right pricing, this could be a great deal.


Non-Tivo Owners: It's a bit of a stretch right now. There is not a lot here to pull folks away from their generic cable company or FIOS DVRs. When paired with something like Apple TV or a Roku box, its hard to make the argument to move to TiVo today.


DirectTv: I only hear crickets


A quick reading of the TiVo Community forums is that a lot of folks are disappointed. My recommendation is that TiVo starts sharing a lot more details about the capabilities of the Series4 and its future with this community as soon as possible. Remember, first impressions count for a lot!
 

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I agree that the S4 is disappointing. If you could stream MKVs in 1080p that would be something to be excited about. True2way would be something to be excited about. Better integration of multiple units would be something to be excited about. Seems like a lot of flash (heh) and little substance.
 

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Was the Netflix app updated? The PS3 stomps all over the current Tivo version. Absolutely no reason to use a Tivo if you have a PS3.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by audigeek /forum/post/18239812


I have a PS3 and a Tivo. PS3 doesn't record HD programs from my FIOS... does it?

It doesnt record from my FIOS either. But its implementation of Netflicks destroys TIVO.
 

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if you want to improve your Tivo and Netflix experience and a Netflix app for your smartphone. it will let u browse and add movies to your instnat queue. That combo makes it just about the best netflix streaming experince you can get. Besides Party mode on 360
 

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I don't get the big deal about Netflix. The movies are old and DVD quality at best. Some look worse than DVD. I don't see how it's much different than regular On Demand programming you can get from everyone else. I guess the selection is better, but it's a bigger selection of poor choices. When Netflix is able to stream 1080, then i'll care.


I also don't see how tivo is much different than using a normal DVR. I've had Comcast and now have FIOS and I admit it's harder to figure out how to do things, but after spending 5 minutes playing around, I can do pretty much the same thing as tivo. I am limited to a 160GB hard drive, but my solution is to delete things after watching them. I rarely want to watch something more than once. I know renting for $16/month as opposed to forking over $600+ is long term more expensive, but if the boxes get upgraded, I can switch to a new box. With Tivo, I'm stuck with what I bought forever.
 

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TiVo failed with their announcement IMHO.


Very little of this is exciting, and it's more like TiVo Series 3.11 than anything else.


What it's going to take for me to renew my current TiVo subscription at the current expiration date:


1) Revenue from subscription fees or revenue from patent fees. Take your pick, one or the other.


2) An external HDD from one or two companies is not much of an option. Allow me to add a brand new 2 TB drive from a company of my choice in an external enclosure of my choice. Better yet? Make the whole thing like the PS3. Swap out the drive, re-install the base OS and off she goes. Don't punish me because I'm not hacking your OS.


3) Uptime of 99.99% is a must. The two Series 3 TiVos I've owned crash more than my home-built Windows 7 box. Did I mention my Windows 7 box had a networking driver error that causes BSoDs? At least I know why my HTPC is restarting.


4) QAM guide data without a CableCard. If you're going to bully everyone else with your patents, why not tell the cable industry where they can go? After all, you can cripple their DVR infrastructure with waves and waves of lawyers.


As it stands right now I plan on spending more money when my subscription is up by building a smaller HTPC for the bedroom. Sure, it will cost more initially, but I won't have a subscription fee, if one part fails I can replace it, if I feel like upgrading something I can do it, I can do plenty more on the HTPC, etc...


Mr Zoid
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by KidHorn /forum/post/18240412


I don't get the big deal about Netflix. The movies are old and DVD quality at best. Some look worse than DVD. I don't see how it's much different than regular On Demand programming you can get from everyone else. I guess the selection is better, but it's a bigger selection of poor choices. When Netflix is able to stream 1080, then i'll care.


I also don't see how tivo is much different than using a normal DVR. I've had Comcast and now have FIOS and I admit it's harder to figure out how to do things, but after spending 5 minutes playing around, I can do pretty much the same thing as tivo. I am limited to a 160GB hard drive, but my solution is to delete things after watching them. I rarely want to watch something more than once. I know renting for $16/month as opposed to forking over $600+ is long term more expensive, but if the boxes get upgraded, I can switch to a new box. With Tivo, I'm stuck with what I bought forever.

You can stream Netflix in HD via a PS3. Not all titles but several.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrZoid /forum/post/18243333


TiVo failed with their announcement IMHO.


Very little of this is exciting, and it's more like TiVo Series 3.11 than anything else.


What it's going to take for me to renew my current TiVo subscription at the current expiration date:


1) Revenue from subscription fees or revenue from patent fees. Take your pick, one or the other.


2) An external HDD from one or two companies is not much of an option. Allow me to add a brand new 2 TB drive from a company of my choice in an external enclosure of my choice. Better yet? Make the whole thing like the PS3. Swap out the drive, re-install the base OS and off she goes. Don't punish me because I'm not hacking your OS.


3) Uptime of 99.99% is a must. The two Series 3 TiVos I've owned crash more than my home-built Windows 7 box. Did I mention my Windows 7 box had a networking driver error that causes BSoDs? At least I know why my HTPC is restarting.


4) QAM guide data without a CableCard. If you're going to bully everyone else with your patents, why not tell the cable industry where they can go? After all, you can cripple their DVR infrastructure with waves and waves of lawyers.


As it stands right now I plan on spending more money when my subscription is up by building a smaller HTPC for the bedroom. Sure, it will cost more initially, but I won't have a subscription fee, if one part fails I can replace it, if I feel like upgrading something I can do it, I can do plenty more on the HTPC, etc...


Mr Zoid


Was going to post something similar, but Zoid said it quite well.


/clap
 

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is the netflix app out, i couldnt find it anywhere?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrZoid /forum/post/18243333


TiVo failed with their announcement IMHO.


1) Revenue from subscription fees or revenue from patent fees. Take your pick, one or the other.

Mr Zoid

They are also starting to get advertising money by putting ads in when you fast forward. Yeah, they are getting cash on all three sides. Unforntunitly, tivo is still not a profitable company. so it becomes difficult for them to cut any of their revenue streams - regardless of how steep they are.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nexus99 /forum/post/18290728


Anyone thinking about trying a Moxi?

I did just that. I sold my Series3 and got a moxi. It has some quirks (some speed issues, too many thing going on in the menu, etc) but all in all, there isn't much that I miss from my tivo. Especially the monthly, yearly or lifetime fee.


Honestly, TiVo's problem is they charge quite a bit for a premium box, then you still have to pay for the service fee and rent a cable card from your provider. Considering that if you add up just the cost of their service fee and cable card rental you are paying monthly the same cost as the tv provider's so-so dvr box... it makes it difficult to justify the tivo when there aren't huge compelling reasons to have it.


Personally, I think that tivo has put more effort and cash in lawsuits and protecting their patents then they have in creating a new revolutionary product. Had they done it the other way around and created more compelling products, more people would buy them and they may not be having the financial crisis that they are in.


I honestly think that if they are not careful, they will be declaring bankruptcy in the next year or so, and someone else will buy them up on the cheap.
 
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