Discussion in 'Satellite TV, Sky TV & FreeSat' started by ash, Jul 6, 2005.
A lot of people have TiVo but what is it? How can you get it? Is it still available in UK?
Tivo is the original PVR and is still available tho not new there are companies who specialise in recon Tivo's upgraded Tivos etc perhpa one day Tivo may come back to the UK
Well...that is a very big question.....
Tivo is a PVR based on a linux platform that has been established in the states for years and was introduced in the Uk aroun 2000/2001. Most people who actually KNOW Tivo rate it as the best PVR yet. That statement is not based around the technology per se - but based on its ability to do the PVR job it was designed to do. It will be a while before XP can approach the user and wife friendly presetation that Tivo delivers.,.. and it does not crash, or need AV updates and patching.... likewise, it does not heat your livingroom and polute with fan noise. Sky+ has a few benefits over but for core PVR functionality Tivo is in a differnt league. As I said earlier,that is only criticised by those that dont or have never owned one. Sky plus does have one real advantage over tivo - and that is concurrent recording from different channels.
You cannot buy a new retail tivo today, but heaps are still around and working - check the small ads and ebay.
As the box is linux based... most things are possible. You can stream movies from the tivo to your pc over ethernet, burm to dvd, use the web server etc etc are possible if you are into a bit of playing around. You can evben get Tivo to send you daily email with whats going on.
There is a monthly or lifetime subscription - as there is with Sky+ unless you subscribe to the expensive movie packages....
I suggest you browse tivo.com and tivocommunity.com for more info...
DJ (PS... I have MCE, Tivo and Sky+...)
A good dealer, that is a regular member of the TiVo Community forum, for refurbished TiVo units also available with upgrades is www.tivoland.com
What can it record? Does it have its own channels?
it has scart input for sky etc and its own analogue tuner
TiVo has a built in analogue TV tuner for the standard 5 UK TV channels. It also has an RGB enabled scart input for connecting Sky/Cable/Freeview boxes.
Has it got like an EPG ssytem for recording the terestrial channels?
its got an EPG for everything thats what the subscription is for it also has series link etc
Everything including Sky+, Freeview etc?
I'm a N00b with this.
Why hasnt this caught on in UK? In America it is massive, a lot of people talk about it.
Probably as a result of being first on to the market and down to Sky doing a much better marketing job with Sky+ (as well as Sky already having a huge number of customers to sell to)
it should have caught on but when Tivo luanched the UK was very un Tech aware, still are to an extent but people didnt see what it do over VHS, Sky+ changed that and killed Tivo in fact sky now Run Tivo Customer services..........a bit like the squarial digital TV platform that was HD ready nearly 10 years ago...............
Thanks mate for the help, that counts me out for TiVo
what counts you out?
The fact that the box is not readily available, I could get a Freeview PVR, and going to get Sky+ or Sky+ HD if it comes out nay time soon, and also a DVD recorder with HDD waiting for freeview models.
It is readily available - but just not brand new.
Still, if you value "new & shiny" above functionality then you'd better stick to Sky+.
TiVo have not pulled out of the UK - in fact they were at a trade show here recently demonstrating a Series 2 model (you know, like they have in the US) with "TiVo 2 Go", networking, mp3-playing etc. etc..
And they've just upgraded their UK EPG servers too - not something you'd expect of a company which has abandoned the UK.
I think tivoland or other dealers might have a few brand new boxes left. Though that is if sitting in a garage for 5 years counts as brand new.
You can always get brand new face plates, lids,modems, remotes and power supplies from the States or UK ebayers. And hard drives and fans are readily available in every computer shop.
In fact you could replace every part with a new one except for the motherboard and tuner.
I suspect you could probably find a new analogue tuner if you looked hard enough as well!
While you are at it you can always add a cachecard to add faster networking and memory and menu speed ,and also add an SDI output modification.
Not a well managed company, is it ? Putting your customer services in the hands of the competition
Well they were a Sky partner at the time.
But Murdoch decided to push the less capable Sky plus as I reckon NDS license fees were lower than TiVos.
The TiVo company is still worth about $600m and is by far the worlds largest PVR company. Sony, Humax, Philips, Toshiba, Pioneer, Thomson and other large companies have licensed and produced TiVos.
The UK marketing was quite disastrous though!
I think only 30,000 UK TiVo subscriptions were sold, compared to over 1.9 million in the USA.
Sky plus has been well marketed with half a million sales I think.
I like the Alice Cooper ads.
So the message is that marketing is more important than technology if you want to get sales.
Joe Public is going to be livid when he wakens up/realises just how he's been conned by the government over the Analogue switchover to Digital TV and the fact that every TV he has in his house including the portables in the bedroom or kitchen and VCRs won't work unless he buys an adaptor......plus Ofcom's decision to recommend 64QAM (poorer quality pics/more channels per multiplex) over 16QAM (greater coverage/more robust signals).
This decision has obviously been based on commercial/political considerations than technical
I wasn't under the impression that it was a secret.
Even "Joe Public" should have been able to grasp that if you have an analogue tuner and analogue is gone then you need something else.
After all he/she has grasped the idea that when vinyl become scare than CD was the only option and you had to buy new hardware and same for DVD replacing VHS as the main stream pre-recorded format.
At this time the digital push has been concentrated on those willing or in a postion to replace analogue as their main broadcast source and once they have all been converted the focus will have to go on those who are not technically aware of are on fixed incomes making upgrading a serious cost issue. Lets hope the government sets aside a few billion for this process since they will recoup that in the sale of the freed up spectrum.
Of course broadcasts specs should be less of an issue when analogue is gone and the number of digital transmitters increases and the power they operate at is increased.
Commercial/political and economic concerns are always a factor in every decision on this scale, yes it would be nice for something to be chosen thanks totally on the technical advantages but if it costs twice as much as the next best solution then decisions get cloudy very fast
TIVO had little choice in teaming up with SKY after all their target market were people with multichannel TV and willing to spend £££ on new technology which SKY subscribers have proven willing to do.
Without any doubt the money that TIVO could generate was not lost on SKY and since NDS had a viable one box solution which could not only be sold/marketed to SKY's advantage plus bring in extra cash the writing was on the wall. TIVO in hindsight really should have looked to the cable companies who even now still do not offer a DVR (TW's still not released).
Once Rupert took over DirecTV he followed the same course and intends to push a non TIVO DVR even if it means ordering 20million units for his subscribers given away or heavily subsidised.
On the plus side I think the NDS/TIVO combination is an excellent product and no doubt those DirecTV subscribers who have the dual tuner/bitstream recorder/TIVO OS based product are hoping it continues to be supported even if they are a couple of generations behind on the software front.
Marketing has always been the key to sales but there are times that a product survives even in the face of an aggressive campaign for it's competition
It would be interesting indeed if the TW DVR incorporated the TIVO OS.
I didn't say it was a "secret"......just that most people In my experience haven't grasped the full implications of the changeover.
I think it's worth pointing out that the whole Tivo thing is sort of like a franchise.
Tivo come up with the software and the hardware specs, but other companies actually make the boxes. In the UK only one company, Thomson, made and supplied the boxes, but I believe Tivo have several partner companies in the US.
I think if Tivo had managed to snag Sony as a partner in the UK it would probably have taken off, as I'm sure Sony would have pumped money into the marketing which Thomson doesn't seem to have done.
There are probably a few million households who haven't even considered ditching analogue and perhaps quite a few who aren't even aware of the upcoming demise which is why the government has to be more proactive and not leave it upto the BBC and the commercial broadcasters to carry the load.
I think it's safe to say my parents are among these - they wouldn't consider multi-channel TV (especially not Sky as my mum doesn't like the idea of having a dish on the house), they have pretty decent analogue reception and my mother also doesn't like widescreen TV's, so the key selling points of digital go straight out the window and they probably won't go digital until analogue shut-off forces them to (or unless I buy them a Freeview box).
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