TiVo Prepping New “Premiere” DVR?

Dave Zatz —  December 30, 2009

tivo-premiere

Due to a possible shipping slip up, we may have just caught our first glimpse of the next model in TiVo’s Series3/HD line. When Patrick McCarron recently upgraded to a TiVo HD, his packaging contained a TiVo Premiere and Premiere XL setup guide. Which diagrams a back panel we’ve never seen before.

The reworked DVR is limited to a single multistream CableCARD slot (M-Card), versus the two slots found on prior HD models. Additionally, S-Video output has been dropped along with the dialup modem. All of which results in a slimmer package that should lower HD TiVo production costs.

Other than the “Premiere” branding, given my doubts we’ll see a retail tru2way TiVo anytime soon (reinforced by TiVo’s recent FCC filing), it seems like this would be an evolutionary product. However, it could still be significant if the DVR incorporates more horsepower, 3 or more tuners, and/or an updated TiVo user interface. Perhaps we’ll learn more about the hardware refresh next week from CES. (Thanks, bfdtv!)

28 responses to TiVo Prepping New “Premiere” DVR?

  1. This is encouraging, if only for the possibility of faster processing power and a speedier UI.

  2. It looks much slimmer too!

  3. Nice find Dave.

    I was hoping for a slimline TiVo that I could attach to the back of an HDTV but this doesn’t seem like it. Maybe they’ve got some more goodies in store for us.

  4. Wonder if anyone who got a TiVo HD for Christmas will be returning it? Hmmm. And like Alex of TiVoBlog.com I’m wondering how many people received this setup guide without realizing its significance. Also noticed a good point in the Engadget comments, wondering about moving the CableCARD slot to the back… Even though we access it infrequently, the front-facing location on the TiVo HD is (was?) a plus.

  5. Can one M-Stream cable card support more than 2 tuners for cable? Or are you referring to a OTA + Cable Card setup to get more than 2 tuners?

  6. Yes, it can. See Moxi’s refreshed HD DVR as one example or the forever upcoming Ceton PC card(s). Of course, SDV potentially throws a wrench into it – tuning possibilities/limitation currently varies between the two primary hardware manufacturers (Motorola, Cisco).

  7. CableCARDs can authorize six tuners. This slimmer box looks cool, but the UI is really what needs the work.

  8. Argh, just upgraded 2 of my Series 2 units with TivoHDs – at least I got each of them for $150 and Lifetime for $299.

  9. Thomas, nice score. How in the heck did you get HD’s for $150? refurb?

  10. I sure hope this isn’t just another stripped down (lower priced) existing product. How long does it take to take features out of a product and ship it as a new one a la Tivo HD to the Tivo Series 3?

  11. After sleeping on it, I’m feeling a bit more optimistic. Premiere is a bold name. Which I’m hoping connotes beefed up internals and a modern, richer HD UI.

    I still don’t see how TiVo could ship a retail tru2way product at this time, given my perception of the cable industry’s incomplete infrastructure and inability to support it (now). However, given development cycles/timeframes, it wouldn’t make sense to ship a product that was incapable of two-way functionality. So I imagine the platform is capable and the functionality could be enabled down the road.

    (Personally, I’m also hoping MRV copying will be replaced with MRV streaming. As my current TiVo units are less useful these days.)

    By the way, the TiVo offices are closed this week and I haven’t been able to get any more info. Not that they’re probably ready to discuss it at this point anyway. We’ll see what next week brings…

  12. A new feature rich HD user interface with the hope of future 2-way (Cable VOD) ability via a software update might make me a Tivo convert.

    Tivo, are you reading this??? Do you want my business? Here’s your opportunity.

  13. Screen shot of current TiVo HD interface? URL?

  14. Todd, you could read ZNF more frequently or head on over to TiVo’s site where they have multiple pics and videos. The current UI is not much changed from in look and feel from what TiVo launched with in the late 90s.

  15. Clearly my wife will not let me buy another TiVo. An interface update would be nice. Been looking at the same one since 2001.

  16. Could this be the Best Buy TiVo?

  17. Well, I’ve been watching crazy price fluctuations on the Tivo HD on Amazon for the past 2 weeks. In fact, the price has dipped down to $218-$225 the last few weeks of 2009. Now I think I see why.

    We know it’s replacement has been long overdue. Originally the next gen Tivo HD was planned for mid 2009 and was thought to be tru2way compatible.

  18. Jack, this will probably be the basic hardware platform for a number of TiVo initiatives… They’ve been making their hardware and software more modular and I expect to see these things reused in various places/ways. After reviewing the document again today, I’m bummed that the screengrabs feature the old/current UI. Sigh.

    Ron, thought by whom? Not I…

  19. What is needed is a picture of the remote…

    and maybe TiVo will default the old UI in initial setup and let users change to newer UI? Could be overall resistance to a new UI despite those that want something new.

  20. Zeo, I’m going under NDA at CES to learn more. (Which probably means no major box announcements this week.) However, I believe the new remote(s) will feature the tru2way/OCAP buttons similar to what is seen on the Comcast remote. I agree on a flexible UI toggle to support the old-timers unwilling to change. ;) But I’m not purchasing anything new until a UI refresh is included. And streaming versus copying.

  21. Stop by the booth yet? I know you can’t say much due to the NDA. Can you at least give us either a thumbs up or thumbs down?

  22. I pushed back my appointment by 48 hours, in hopes of seeing some leaks I could report on. ;) So my meeting is Saturday AM. I know and assume what most of us do that this point… hopefully we’ll see the TiVo Premiere standalone(s) and DirecTV TiVo this spring. Hopefully with a new UI and that QWERTY keyboard they mentioned at the quarterly call. My only real questions are what’s the tru2way situation.

  23. I hope this is more than Tivo’s version of a slim Sony PS3 (no new features, just a smaller unit).

  24. So when can we expect to hear an annoucement? :-)

  25. The suspense is killing me.

  26. Maybe February will bring us some news.

  27. This itch needs to be scratched soon!!

  28. Looks like we have an annoucement date 03/02/10