(New) HD TiVo Coming to DirecTV!

Dave Zatz —  September 3, 2008

TiVo and DirecTV have not only extended their reciprocal do-not-sue clause, they’re getting back into bed for some new hardware. The original HD DirecTiVo supports only MPEG-2 and has been out of production for a few years, while DTV screwed around with NDS. Although they’ll likely continue marketing NDS DVRs, offering TiVo as an upsell with less subsidized hardware.

The current TiVo HD platform should be sufficient for decoding DirecTV’s MPEG-4 HD content once they integrate satellite tuners – which supports their aggressive goal of rolling this out next year. Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse for Dish… ;)

DIRECTV, Inc. (Nasdaq: DTV), the nation’s leading satellite television service provider, and TiVo Inc. (Nasdaq: TIVO), the creator of and a leader in television services for digital video recorders (DVR), announced today that they have extended their current agreement, which includes the development, marketing and distribution of a new HD DIRECTV DVR featuring the TiVo(R) service, as well as the extension of mutual intellectual property arrangements.

Under the terms of the non-exclusive arrangement, DIRECTV and TiVo will work together to develop a version of the TiVo(R) service for DIRECTV’s broadband-enabled HD DVR platform. The product will support the latest TiVo and DIRECTV features and services, including TiVo’s Universal Swivel Search and TiVo KidZone. TiVo will develop the new HD DVR for an expected launch in the second half of 2009.

UPDATE TiVo has just clarified for me that the service will run on DirecTV hardware, not the TiVo HD hardware as I had assumed.

27 responses to (New) HD TiVo Coming to DirecTV!

  1. This is pretty exciting news for DirecTV subs!

    I switched from an SD Tivo unit to DirecTV’s HR21 about a year ago. There have been numerous software updates for stability and functionality over the months and I’m very happy with the current product. Everyone assumes that it can’t be as good as Tivo, but honestly, I like it a bit more than my in-law’s Tivo HD hooked up to Comcast. Yeah, the Tivo’s nice (although it’s way slow), but most of the functionality that matters can be found in the HR series DVRs. Also, dealing with Comcast content and picture quality isn’t worth it. Bottom line is I don’t miss Tivo as much as I thought I would.

    I’m assuming that they will build in the DirecTV On Demand features, but will they use the Tivo media sharing or DirecTV’s? Hopefully, Tivo’s.

    Also will they enable the dual-live buffers as they had with the SD DirecTV-Tivo? 12 months is a long time to wait.

  2. I’m really stoked for this. I told TiVo when I dumped them for an HR21 that they could get me back by making a Directv box. I bet a lot of folks said the same.

    Now the real question is, will this come out before FiOS gets to my street. Decisions.

  3. I assume they’ll try to get it out by football season (Sunday Ticket) – and they’re not entirely starting from scratch as the TiVo HD hardware handles MPEG-4 and they’ve already got some backend stuff in place with DirecTV, including web scheduling.

  4. oh, THANK YOU INFANT EIGHT AND HALF LB BABY JESUS!!

    Does this mean I can stop with the H20-700 directv voodoo doll I had setup?

    :-)

  5. That is very exciting news. The best part is that it’s scheduled to come out about six months before my 3 year subscription on my main Series 3 unit expires.

    I was a longtime DirecTivo subscriber, but switched last year in order to get HD and tivo together. Our Time Warner became Comcast which, in a word, sucks. So even though it’s another 12-18 months out, I’ll gladly go back to DirecTV at the earliest opportunity. As long as I have Tivo, I’m happy.

  6. At last – it has been either Tivo/DirectTV -OR- HD/DirectTV. I’m a huge Tivo fan – so have held off on any HD.

    This is good news… wait. Looks like I’ll finally go HDTV when this comes out.

  7. Best news in months, maybe years. Like many others here, I’ve kept all my TVs SD because of the lack of a HD TiVo on DirecTV.

    All I can say is thank you! AMEN.

  8. In chatting with Lou Jacon of DVR Upgrade, he noticed the release seems to imply the possible use of DirecTV hardware. Though it’s sufficiently vague that we can’t tell conclusively. I’ll ping TiVo.

  9. It’s cool if it’s just the Tivo software, that’s a major step-up from where we’re at now

  10. Update on my update: I’m getting conflicting info out of TiVo… they may not have decided on a hardware platform yet and I doubt they’ll be elaborating further at this time.

  11. I left DirecTV when I realized that 90%+ of the shows I recorded were from the OTA antenna connector on my HR10-250. So instead of paying DirecTV $80+ per month, I purchased two TiVo HDs (with lifetime subscriptions); the monthly savings has now more than paid for both of my TiVo HDs.

    I do miss the occasional Discovery Channel show or HBO series, but not enough to justify paying $80/month to get them. I’ll just add the shows to my Netflix cue and watch them later.

    I was also frustrated that DirecTV never added the features of the Stand Alone TiVos, such as Multi-Room viewing & TiVoToGo. I love having episodes auto-downloaded to my computer and converted for watching on my iPhone. If DirecTV is smart, they’ll implement all of the features TiVo has to offer.

  12. I’ve never had a DTV TiVo, but I read a ton of complains about hampered functionality. For the sake of satellite users, I sure hope they’ll keep most of good TiVo stuff intact. And I don’t mean stuff like Swivel Search or KidZone.

  13. I’ve been suckered by DTV 2x now. I fell for their latest tivo that was not hd, but then that one’s hd failed nad they forced me to get another one. At the time cable was not offering tivo, which meant they were the only game in town. I then shelled out 450 + an agreement to stay on for a year. Now that the year’s over, DTV tried to get me to trade in my tivo for their crappy hr20. I’ve used their pvr before and have hated it so i opted out.

    In the 2-3 years that I’ve used tivo through dtv, i’ve noticed that none of the cool features were ever available. From the ability to use your network to stream pictures, music, amazon one box, scheduling a recording through the web (I heard they offer this now — 2 years late and the feature is hidden somewhere on their site cuz i have no idea how to do it).

    I will avoid this one like a bad plague. Stick to regular tivo if you’re a tivo fan. Avoid the dtv tivo crap now that we have options.

  14. So hell has not frozen over? *Confused*

  15. Todd, DirecTV and TiVo plan to offer TiVo service to DirecTV customers sometime late next year. The question is: who’s hardware will they be using.

  16. Didn’t they just launch the H22? I wonder if this will be like the Comcast rollout using the existing DVR’s customers have and then being upcharged if you want all the Tivo software? Would seem to me it’d be faster to do that, then try to get customers that just switched to MPEG 4 equipment to go out and buy something else. Sell this as a broadband download for all DTV dvr’s and they may have something.

  17. OMG is this real? I dropped DTV for Comcast just for the Series 3. DTV service is far superior.

  18. I would guess that this will be similar to the Comcast solution, i.e. software download for existing boxes. As a D* customer who has invested in three HR20s, this would obviously be the preferred method. Give me a peanut remote, tivo software and I’ll pay the addtional $5 or whatever a month.

    Multi-room viewing would be nice too.

  19. That’s great news for me…I still run my S2 Tivo (lifetimed) serial controlling a D10-100 D* box b/c I don’t want to give up my tivo to go HD. I don’t want to switch to comcast or have a crappy HD box either.

  20. Great news! I’ve been holding onto my HR10-250 because I cannot give up the dual live buffers even though it meant losing HD channels (MPEG 4). I was thinking of leaving DTV, but maybe I can wait a year for the new box.

  21. Hopefully when you say “like the Comcast Tivo” you mean “sort of like the Comcast Tivo”.

    The Comcast Tivo sucks. It runs under OCAP, and is if anything more problematic than the original software that runs on the Comcast STBs it is deployed on (Mot 8000-somethings).

    Presumably a “Software Tivo” in this case would run on the bare DTV hardware, which presumably would be fine.

  22. Dave, you said “DirecTV and TiVo plan to offer TiVo service to DirecTV customers sometime late next year.”
    So, just for us over-excited hard-of-thinking, do you mean this is still about 18 months away?

  23. James, the press release said the second half of next year. Given TiVo’s missed targets with Cox and Comcast, who really knows…

  24. Finally!!! we had a tivo w/dtv and loved it! after 4 years the box finally broke and we couldn’t get a tivo again. we got dtv’s dvr and it is awful!!!! the worst electronic i have ever had! it misses our recordings, won’t rewind or fastforward! can’t wait to have my tivo back!

  25. OK now I am confused –

    Can some one confirm or deny the hardware that wll be used is not going to be TiVo but the Direct TV DVR hardware they are currently offering?

    I am only hoping that they will use all the functions of the TiVO stand alone units and not just a few selections.

    As a Direct TV customer scince October of 1994 I have spent much $$$ Direct TV recivers and on TiVo Units, Starting with the first standalone TiVo uints which I hooked to the old RCA Direct TV recivers ( that TiVo still works today !) and when the DVR TIVOs came out I bought 3 SD units then 2 HD Units. Currently we have 4 Tivo DVRS running with 1 Direct TV DVR and 1 Basic Reciver in our household. Ok- a little over board but if the file sharing was available on the Direct TV TiVos we would be in TiVO heaven !!

    Renently I was hood winked by Direct TV —
    When I lost one tuner in the oldest SD unit Direct TV sent me what they said would function like a TiVO but as it turns out is a slow responding “dumbed down” imitation without the dual channel buffers.
    while it can do some neat things — My hope would be they do not just add the dual channel buffer to the current units.

    I have held out and held my breath waiting for the MPEG 2 transmissions to stop — at which time I was contemplating switching to Atlanitc Broadband and getting new HD stand alone Tivos. Well now I might just deal with the wait and hope to see a great TiVo – Direct TV DVR come out. Maybe it will be released before they kill the Mempeg 2 transmissions.

    An even better thought how can I get on the new Units BETA TEST list ???

  26. DTVs HD DVRs SUCK!!!! most are re-builds that are slow and lock up all the time!!!! I hate, hate, hate them!!!!… can can’t wait until I can go back to using TiVo.

  27. colleen spilsbury January 9, 2010 at 1:39 am

    The wait is killing me. Keep hearing rumblings then getting my hopes up just to have them crushed. In dvr hell. As homer would say “they get you addicted then jack up the price”. Only theres no option for a jacked up price. Which I would gladly pay to get out of Dish network HELL! Somebody please give me some good news to look forward to this year!