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Tivo Premiere

Old 03-02-10, 08:29 PM
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Tivo Premiere

TiVo adds Web, music, movies with Premiere
By Doug Gross, CNN

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • TiVo Premiere adds Internet, music, movies to popular digital recorders
  • Never been so easy to get all your entertainment in one place, TiVo spokesman said
  • Boxes will cost $299 or $499 and be on sale in April, company says
  • Box similar to Boxee and Roku, cubes by smaller companies that blend Web and TV

(CNN) -- TiVo subscribers will be able to pull Internet content, music and movies onto their televisions more easily with new devices the digital-video recorder company announced Tuesday.

Called TiVo Premiere, the boxes boast Web-connected capabilities similar to what rival manufacturers, such as Boxee and Roku, have unveiled. TiVo hopes the devices will help the pioneering DVR company shore up a slipping subscriber base by catching up with how digital-era consumers increasingly seek out entertainment.

"It has never been this easy to get all of your entertainment in one place, on the big screen, in HD, right at your fingertips," TiVo President and CEO Tom Rogers said.

The new boxes, which will be available in early April, will combine access to digital cable television, movies, videos on the Web and music, including a planned app from Pandora online radio.

The TiVo Premiere, which will sell for $299, will have 320 gigabytes of storage and record up to 45 hours of high-definition programming or 400 hours of standard-definition fare.

The TiVo Premiere XL, retailing at $499, will have a terabyte of storage and will be capable of recording up to 150 hours in HD or 1,350 hours of standard-definition.

A new search function will let users browse for shows from premium cable channels and offer a new interface for broadband sources like Netflix, Blockbuster On Demand and Amazon, according to a release from TiVo.

"It's the one box that can give you access to almost anything you want, whenever you want it," Rogers said. "We've taken millions of pieces of content and organized it for you in a way that makes so much sense, you'll wonder how you ever lived without it."

The news release by TiVo took a cue from the "Lord of the Rings" franchise, calling the Premiere "the one box to rule them all."

The box will come with a Bluetooth-equipped remote with a slide-out keyboard that's able to operate the box from up to 30 feet away, according to the company.

Premiere's user interface will not operate on existing TiVo boxes, a company spokeswoman said.

TiVo's announcement comes on the heels of other developers rolling out similar products that meld online content with TV.

The Boxee Box, a cubelike device that shares Internet content with your TV, was awarded the title of "Last Gadget Standing" at January's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

The Boxee Box lets users search and store Web content and either play it on television or share it on social-networking sites. The device, expected to hit the market in late spring and cost about $200, also features a keyboard in its remote control.

"It's truly a game-changer," said Boxee spokesman Andrew Kippen, who presented the device during the lighthearted "American Idol" style contest. "We're really bringing the creativity of the Web onto your TV screen."

California-based company Roku has also rolled out a digital video player that integrates television, Web content and a video library. It retails for about $100.

But TiVo, with its existing customer base, is no doubt looking to parlay its higher profile into becoming the market leader while revitalizing subscription numbers hit hard by increased competition in recent years.

Founded in 1997, TiVo developed the first commercially available DVR. Its brand name became virtually synonymous with digital recorders and became a commonly used digital-age verb, much like "Google" and "blog."

But amid a tight economy and competition from cable and online rivals, its membership has dipped of late.

In the fiscal quarter that ended October 31, TiVo had about 2.7 million subscribers. That's down from more than 3.4 million subscriptions the previous year.



SWEET! But will it work with DirecTV?

More pics: http://www.engadget.com/photos/tivo-...re-ui-gallery/
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Old 03-02-10, 08:56 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

It's 2010. I find myself insulted at:

1) A measly 320gb hard drive for HD
2) No built in WiFi and a $90 USB adapter
3) An entry level $299 price tag

As neat as the new functionality is there is no reason this box shouldn't be priced at $199, $250 for WiFi and maybe $350 for the XL with fancy remote. Tivo apparently lost 700k subscribers last year (bottom of quoted article) and that is a large portion of their overall base. They can't afford to lose more and they need to bring more in; however, I do not see this device and price point as something to allow that. I think they have missed a big opportunity.

Perhaps their partnership with the cable company is a shift to eventually having Tivo be the supplier of nationwide cable boxes in place of other companies. Maybe that's where their future bread and butter is. I would think it would be direct sales to customers and a moderate (read: not $15/mo) fee for the guide data, etc.
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Old 03-03-10, 04:38 AM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

Tivo seems to be far better at litigation than creating new products and getting them into consumers homes.

$300 for the unit + >$150 a year in fees just for the DVR? That's crazy talk to most cable customers that can get a cable DVR for no upfront cost and about half of the monthly fees.

Tivo has a really great product and they've put a lot of time into it, it's just going to be next to impossible to sell it to consumers that have way cheaper choices and don't much care for the fancier Tivo software.

Of course, if Tivo is successful with lawsuits with at&t and Verizon, soon you won't be able to use any DVR other than a Tivo. I still can't believe they want $1,000,000,000 from Dish for contempt of court. Dish should just buy Tivo and shutter the company. Probably way cheaper....
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Old 03-03-10, 05:48 AM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

Longtime Tivo subscriber and I'm completely underwhelmed. $300 for a new UI? What a letdown. I can't believe this is what they've been up to all this time.
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Old 03-03-10, 08:09 AM
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Originally Posted by chrisih8u View Post
Longtime Tivo subscriber and I'm completely underwhelmed. $300 for a new UI? What a letdown. I can't believe this is what they've been up to all this time.
Completely agree. I have a Series 3 and there's nothing here that gets me the least bit excited about trading "up".
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Old 03-03-10, 08:53 AM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

I had tivo years ago and just dont see the point of buying these when you get decent dvrs from the cable company that do the exact same things....seems like a waste of money to me
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Old 03-03-10, 08:54 AM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

This is a joke. The worst part is that there are executives at Tivo who probably think this is all a really good idea.

They are pitching a 320gb HD? WOW. A new UI? LOL. That new interface should be installed on all existing HD boxes. My Netflix UI is garbage on my Tivo. Other boxes allow you to search Netflix and add stuff to your que and watch it instantly.

I was waiting on this to buy my 3rd Tivo. Now I am just going to deal with QAM in my bedroom because I am actually worried that Tivo won't be around long enough for me to break even on my box + service.
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Old 03-03-10, 08:55 AM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

Originally Posted by bd...? View Post
I had tivo years ago and just dont see the point of buying these when you get decent dvrs from the cable company that do the exact same things....seems like a waste of money to me
Cable DVRs are shit. I had a Cablevision DVR in my bedroom for one month and returned it. Tivo's interface is head and shoulders better than anything any cable company can come up with.
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Old 03-03-10, 09:46 AM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

Originally Posted by SoSpacey View Post
Cable DVRs are shit. I had a Cablevision DVR in my bedroom for one month and returned it. Tivo's interface is head and shoulders better than anything any cable company can come up with.
After my experience with Comcast's and AT&T Uverse's DVRs, I completely agree.
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Old 03-03-10, 12:58 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

I guess it looks good to me because I'm still using a series 2 DirecTivo from about 7 years ago.
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Old 03-03-10, 03:46 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

Only 10 posts, and anything I was gonna say has already been said. I especially agree with the disappointment over no built-in WiFi (and a $90 adapter!) and a small hard drive for the price.

I have 2 Tivo HDs with lifetime service, and now I just have 2 hopes:

* Tivo hangs on as long as possible so I get my money's worth.
* Something else eventually comes along that works as well and is as easy to use as Tivo.

I can't believe that they're not including the BT QWERTY remote with the XL version. $500 is pretty steep for what you're (not) getting.
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Old 03-03-10, 04:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Numanoid View Post
SWEET! But will it work with DirecTV?
Nope. The standalone TiVos only work with cable.

There's still a forthcoming updated DirecTiVo, however.
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Old 03-03-10, 04:10 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

Just read that the BT QWERTY remote will be backwards compatible with S3 and TiVo HD.

Ok, that I'm excited about.

It'll probably be priced in the Harmony range.
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Old 03-03-10, 04:31 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

Do they state anywhere exactly what the improvements of this new unit are over the Series 3 models?
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Old 03-03-10, 04:31 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

Originally Posted by Chew View Post
Just read that the BT QWERTY remote will be backwards compatible with S3 and TiVo HD.

Ok, that I'm excited about.

It'll probably be priced in the Harmony range.
That sounds odd, unless they're bundling a USB BT dongle along with it. I can't imagine the S3 or HD models have built-in BT. Agreed that the price will be more than it should be, regardless.
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Old 03-03-10, 05:25 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

Could've sworn I heard something about S4 having 4 or more tuners.

Originally Posted by SoSpacey View Post
That new interface should be installed on all existing HD boxes.
If only to remedy the freezing problem that's been going for the last two years. I'm really getting sick of having to restart the damn thing every couple of weeks.


Still waiting on the DirecTiVo...
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Old 03-03-10, 06:25 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

Originally Posted by stevevt View Post
That sounds odd, unless they're bundling a USB BT dongle along with it. I can't imagine the S3 or HD models have built-in BT. Agreed that the price will be more than it should be, regardless.
Yup, both the Premiere and S3/HD units will require a dongle for that remote.
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Old 03-03-10, 06:39 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

Originally Posted by Chad View Post
Could've sworn I heard something about S4 having 4 or more tuners.
I assume you mean 4 tuners recording at once. I've had 4 tuners in my HDTivo for years.

Also waiting for the new Directivos. Although I've stopped complaining about the HR2x's.
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Old 03-03-10, 09:20 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

The only thing that really interests me is that I'm looking to get a new Tivo anyways, and they're offering a $100 discount (+ extra $100 Multi Tivo Discount) on new lifetime service with the purchase of Premiere. They allow you to keep your old Tivo with Lifetime as well, which you can also sell if you're so inclined.

Apart from that, there's not much there that I can see worth making the upgrade from a Series 3 or HD.
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Old 03-04-10, 05:19 AM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

Originally Posted by Spiky View Post
I assume you mean 4 tuners recording at once. I've had 4 tuners in my HDTivo for years.

Also waiting for the new Directivos. Although I've stopped complaining about the HR2x's.
How did you get four tuners in there?
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Old 03-05-10, 12:00 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

The TivoHD is good stuff. My wife LOVES the Tivo (more so than the Dish VIP622 we used to have... that Dish ripped off Tivo's patents to make). Hell I've had issues with it and had to re-stage it twice (since I was doing it, I upgraded the HDD to a 500GB). But despite that she still loevs it.

This looks nice but it should have had at least a 500GB standard.

Wi-fi is unnecessary but they should price the adapter a bit more reasonably for folks that don't know how to pick up a cheap ethernet/wi-fi bridge or a bridging capable router, etc. The official wireless adapter is for suckers, just like the Xbox360 wireless adapter.

And they need to get the price down a bit. Considering how much a typical cable DVR rental fee is, Tivo is cheaper in the long run - but they need to get the cost of entry down for people. People would rather do monthly payments than pay upfront (look at the subsidized cellphone market).

It sounds like the decision to go with a Flash / App store plug in type model makes it not feasible to offer the upgrade to S3 owners...porky Flash...too bad.

Last edited by GreenMonkey; 03-05-10 at 12:09 PM.
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Old 03-05-10, 03:56 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

Originally Posted by GreenMonkey View Post
The TivoHD is good stuff. My wife LOVES the Tivo (more so than the Dish VIP622 we used to have... that Dish ripped off Tivo's patents to make)
I would agree that the Tivo software is better in every way. However, Tivo's patent is so broad that NO other company can make a DVR without infringing on this patent.
The patent, which TiVo filed for in 1998, is described in the application as an "invention allowing the user to store selected television broadcast programs while the user is simultaneously watching or reviewing another program."
I would like to see anyone make a DVR that doesn't do that. It wouldn't be a DVR.
But Barton said the patent, with its 61 claims, is "broad enough for people in the space or those looking to enter will have to look at it and talk to us."

Barton added that companies may be able to engineer around the patent, but it would be difficult to do so efficiently.
I wish Tivo future success, however, their success will likely be into suing everyone who's ever made a DVR into paying them licensing fees.
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Old 03-05-10, 03:57 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

By the way, the quotes are from this article in 2001:

http://news.cnet.com/Industry-ponder..._3-258345.html
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Old 03-05-10, 04:09 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

The TiVo user interface needs a lot more work than just making it HD and shinier, there are so many usability problems that haven't been fixed in 10+ years. It may still be the best thing out there, but that doesn't mean there isn't a lot of room for improvement. Unfortunately something tells me the original UI architects are long gone from the company, given the lack of tangible improvements over such a long time.
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Old 03-05-10, 08:40 PM
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Re: Tivo Premiere

Wanting to get rid of my present cable box I had a discussion with someone at Best Buy this evening who was talking up the new TIVO box. From what you guys describe it may not be worth the wait??

(I'm trying to record HD TV, output it to a hard drive then, as needed, move it to a portable Archos media player. My present HD cable box DVR allows no output to another drive.)
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