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October 6, 2015


First pics of TiVo's low-cost HD recorder

by Brad Linder, posted Jul 11th 2007 12:48PM
TiVo Series3 lite
Gizmodo has scored some photos of what could be TiVo's promised sub-$300 HDTV recorder. With the Series3 TiVo still retailing for $800 (although you can often find it on sale in the $500 to $600 range), the company's existing HDTV recorder is still kind of in the early adopter category. While cable and satellite providers are offering generic HDTV PVRs for a monthly fee, it's kind of hard to justify the cost of a Series3, no matter how good the reviews are.

A $300 box could change that. If you look closely that the blurry pictures, you can see two CableCard slots, meaning you'll be able to record two shows at once, or record one and watch another. It's certainly not as pretty as the Series3, but you might be able to chalk that up to the fact that it's a demo unit. The remote control is also reportedly lighter and cheaper feeling than the Series3 remote.

It's not clear yet what corners TiVo cut to get the price down. Will it be THX certification? Some of the input/output features? Does it have a slower processor, and how will that affect broadband performance? We can't imagine that the cheaper version won't sport broadband features like TiVoCast and Amazon Unbox, since that seems to be where the industry is headed.

What do you think will be missing from the new HDTV TiVo? And how do you think TiVo will prevent this unit's sales from eating into Series3 sales? Or would you expect this to be the replacement form the Series3?

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How to do practically everything with your TiVo: Galleon 2.4 Alpha released

by Brad Linder, posted Jun 6th 2007 11:30AM
Galleon iTunesMore than a year after the developer of Galleon stopped working on the open source application for doing about 1,001 things with your TiVo, a new developer has picked up the project.

Galleon lets you:
  • Play MP3 files using Winamp skins, view album arts, lyrics, and other images for your music collection
  • Listen to your iTunes collection
  • View local weather forecasts
  • Read RSS feeds
  • Listen to internet radio including Shoutcast stations
  • View your photos with background music and slideshow effects
And the list goes on. But with development ceasing last year, there was no support for high definition applications, making Galleon a bit less impressive on Series3 TiVo units.

Two updates were released this week. Galleon 2.3.1 doesn't include much in the way of new features, but 2.4.0 alpha is the first version to support high definition applications, like HD photos. This is an alpha, so expect some bugs, but it's nice to see someone pick up the Galleon torch.

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How to really really expand Series3 TiVo storage

by Brad Linder, posted Jun 3rd 2007 6:14PM
eSATA driveLast month some fine folks at the TiVo Community Forum figured out how to enable that little eSATA port on the Series3 TiVo to let you plug in an external hard drive and expand your storage. Just one problem, it wouldn't work with modified boxes. So if you'd already upgraded the internal hard drive, no external happiness for you.

The latest version of MFSLive lets you have your cake and eat it too. In other words, the LiveCD of TiVo hacking tools will let you upgrade your internal hard drive and add an eSATA hard drive, meaning you could theoretically create a TiVo with 2TB of storage. That's somewhere around enough storage for nearly 300 hours of HDTV recordings or a mind-boggling 2500 hours of standard definition TV.

[via Engadget]

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Comcast to roll out TiVo service in

by Brad Linder, posted May 31st 2007 8:53AM
TiVo ComcastAfter years of waiting, it looks like Comcast and TiVo are almost ready to launch TiVo service for Comcast set top boxes. During TiVo's quarterly earnings call yesterday, CEO Tom Rogers announced that the official launch will be around August.

The software is currently in limited trials. But in August, Comcast plans to launch a limited commercial rollout in parts of New England. Rogers says Cox Cable could be ready to offer TiVo software on its set top boxes by the end of the year.

At this point, TiVo is fighting the generic cable company set top box on two fronts. While sales of the $800 TiVo Series3 haven't been spectacular, Tivo is continuing to work on a lower-cost high definition unit. But if selling standalone boxes doesn't work out for the PVR pioneer, it looks like providing software to television providers may be a viable business model.

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TiVo offers $200 rebate on Series3 recorders for Father's Day

by Brad Linder, posted May 23rd 2007 5:35PM
TiVo Series3If you're the type to take pity on your dad for his efforts to record HD World War II specials on The History Channel using his old school VCR, you might be thinking of picking him up a Series3 TiVo for father's day. TiVo wants to help, and is offering up a $200 rebate good from May 27th through June 16th.

The offer's not available at TiVo.com yet, but you can find all the info, as well as the rebate form (pdf) at DVRupgrade.

Since this is a rebate, not a discount, you should be able to apply it to any Series3 TiVo you pick up from a TiVo reseller. For example, if you pick up a $600 unit from Amazon, you would be able to get a Series3 for about $400. That's assuming Amazon doesn't raise its price this week.

[via TiVo Lovers]

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WeaKnees to sell 1TB Series3 TiVos

by Brad Linder, posted May 12th 2007 7:45AM
1TB TiVoThat piddly 250GB hard drive on a TiVo Series3 not doing it for you? The thing about buying a high definition PVR is that high definition TV takes up a lot of space, so you can only store about 32 hours of HDTV programs.

Well, DVR Upgrade and WeaKnees have been giving you the option of buying modified TiVos with hard drives up to 750GB. That should be enough for 100 hours of HDTV or 1000 hours of standard definition programming. But that's not good enough for you either, now is it?

Well, WeaKnees has announced that they're preparing a 1TB Series3 TiVo, capable of storing 144 hours of high definition recordings. Of course, WeaKnees charges $1250 to $1600 for a Series3 box with a 750GB hard drive, so don't expect the 1TB model to come cheap.

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How to add storage to your Series3 TiVo through the eSATA port

by Brad Linder, posted May 4th 2007 11:47PM
TiVo eSATA Ever since TiVo launches the Series3 high definition box last year, users have been staring longingly at the eSATA port on the back of their TiVo units. It's supposed to allow you to plug in an external hard drive, but TiVo hasn't enabled that feature yet.

As is usually the case with these things, the members of the TiVo Community Forum have stepped in to finish the job. So here's the hack to activate that eSATA port on your Series3 TiVo. It only seems to work on an unmodified box, so if you've already cracked the lid and upgraded the internal hard drive, there's no guarantees. Also, this hack has been tested on boxes running TiVo 8.1.1 software.

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Rumor mill: TiVo to launch $300 HD PVR

by Brad Linder, posted May 1st 2007 9:00AM
TiVo Series3So Gizmodo's fanning the flames of the rumor mill by reporting that TiVo's could be prepping a $300 high definition personal video recorder. Sure, the Series3 HD TiVo launched at $800, but now TiVo's offered it at promotional prices as low as $499. Is it too much of a stretch to think the company can offer a stripped down model for $300?

Maybe. Here's the thing. While TiVo CEO Tom Rogers did say back in March that the company is looking into a lower-cost PVR, I'm just not sure we can expect them to release a device anytime soon that's going to dramatically undercut the sales of the their existing box. Because if you could pay $300 or $800 for boxes that do almost the same thing, which would you choose?

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TiVo Desktop 2.4 released

by Brad Linder, posted Apr 29th 2007 5:02PM
TiVo Desktop 2.4TiVo has released the final version of TiVo Desktop 2.4 for the PC. While TiVo doesn't usually do the public beta thing, this software's been available in beta form for the last few months.

The updates includes support for additional PC folders and viewing high definition photos (if you happen to have a Series3 TiVo).

While TiVo Desktop is free, if you pay $25 you can get a Plus key and the ability to convert TiVoToGo files to portable WMV and MP4 files for playback on a PSP, iPod, or other device. You can also convert WMV and MP4 files into movies that you can watch on your Series2 TiVo.

[via Zatz Not Funny]

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TiVo Series3 8.3 update includes new HD features

by Brad Linder, posted Apr 27th 2007 5:35PM
Series3 HD searchLooks like TiVo's pushing out version 8.3 of its software to Series3 HD TiVo boxes. And while there's no really dramatic updates like adding TiVoToGo or multi-room viewing for Series3 units, TiVo had added a few new HD-specific features.

Now you can search for HD programs or create wishlists that will only look for HD programming. There's still no HD suggestions, but this is a good start. There's nothing worse than buying an expensive new PVR that will work with your HDTV only to realize that most of the programming you're recording is in standard definition. Well, there's probably a few things worse, but it can still be pretty annoying.

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TiVo selling Series3 for $499

by Brad Linder, posted Apr 26th 2007 9:34PM
TiVo Series3 saleThe biggest (and pretty much only) complaint with the high definition Series3 TiVo is it's $800 price tag. Well, apparently TiVo's been paying attention -- and selling enough units to make it cost efficient to drop the price of the box. Because TiVo's offering one heck of a discount in its latest promotion.

For $499.99 you can pick up a Series3 TiVo plus a wireless TiVo adapter. No need to fill out any silly rebates, and there's free shipping included. That's $360 worth of savings.

The offer is only good through April 30th. But now that TiVo's starting to offer discounts on Series3 units, I think it's fair to say there'll be another promotion along soon. The company almost always has one rebate offer or another available for Series2 boxes.

Speaking of which, the latest Series2 deals include a free wireless adapter with an 80-hour single-tuner box or a 180 hour dual-tuner box for $70 or $120 respectively.

[via TiVoBlog]

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TiVo Series3 lifetime service transfers still work

by Brad Linder, posted Apr 18th 2007 3:31PM
TiVo Series3Thinking about buying a Series3 HD TiVo but don't want to give up the product lifetime service you have on your old box? Well, even though TiVo was supposed to have stopped accepting lifetime service transfers months ago, they still work.

And TiVo reseller WeaKnees is taking advantage of that fact by offering up a deal to sell you a Series3 TiVo that will only ship if the transfer goes through.

Here's how it works. You order a Series3 unit from WeaKnees. Ask the company to hold the order and they'll email you the information to get a transfer. If you call TiVo and the transfer goes through, you email WeaKnees and they send the TiVo. If it doesn't work, contact the company for a refund. So far, they say everyone who's tried to get a service transfer has been successful.

Seeing as TiVo doesn't offer lifetime service deals anymore, this is the only way to get a lifetime service contract for a Series3 box. This isn't a free transfer. It'll cost you about $200.

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TiVo's latest round of rebates

by Brad Linder, posted Apr 3rd 2007 9:00AM
TiVoTiVo has update the rebates available for Series2 boxes yet again. First up, the single-tuner Series2 box is back, and it's free after rebate (with a one year service plan) yet again.

Or for $50, you can pick up an 80-hour dual tuner box. $130 gets you a 180-hour dual tuner box.

All of which is to say, you can still get a standard definition TiVo for a whole lot less than a Series3 HD TiVo, which still goes for $800.

[HDTiVo Blog]

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Doctor Who Series 3 trailers now online

by Martin Conaghan, posted Mar 23rd 2007 8:01AM
David Tennant as Doctor WhoIf you live in the UK, then mark Saturday 31 March as a date in your calendar, for that's the day when the third series of Doctor Who returns to BBC ONE.

With Freema Agyeman playing David Tennant's new assistant Martha Jones, and some interesting rumours about John Simms from Life on Mars playing The Master, the revived series is facing its toughest test yet; to get past the all-important third season and survive any of the rumoured changes in the lead role.

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TiVo working on lower priced HD PVR

by Brad Linder, posted Mar 8th 2007 9:42AM
TIVo Series3During yesterday's speech to investors, TiVo CEO Tom Rogers admitted that the $799 price tag on the Series3 HD TiVo probably hurt sales.

Rogers says the company plans to offer a lower-priced high definition unit soon. That ambiguous statement could mean lowering the price on the Series3 or offering a stripped down version of the box.

While some resellers have offered Series3 TiVo for under $600, that's still a lot of money to shell out when you can pick up an HD PVR for just a few bucks a month from your cable or satellite provider. TiVo's been tackling this issue on two fronts:
  • By throwing features (like TiVoCast, Amazon Unbox, and web video) onto its boxes, providing features that you can't get on generic PVRs.
  • By partnering with cable providers like Comcast and Cox to bundle TiVo software with cable company set-top-boxes.
As much as I hope TiVo plans a major price drop for Series3 units, Rogers might have been talking about rolling out HD TiVo service through Comcast and Cox boxes.

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