As promised, TiVo’s Spring Update has arrived — and, with it, are refreshed Netflix and YouTube apps in addition to the ability to access parental controls from the HD UI.
Having had the Premiere-only software about a week, thus far, I’d say it’s a mixed bag. The HD UI remain incomplete and while the new app UIs are certainly richer, similar to those on the Best Buy TiVo TV (RIP?), but we pay a penalty in terms of speed. In fact, I can actually switch television inputs and launch Netflix on Roku in about 1/3rd the time it takes to come up on TiVo. But, of course, the point is maybe you wouldn’t need a second box and once you’re streaming (Netflix), audio and video quality are quite high. Beyond these apps, developed by Netflix and Google respectively, new Parental Controls (that mark the end of KidZone) are accessible from the HD UI… yet they themselves aren’t actually rendered within the high def interface (and feature a sad padlock icon that looks like it was grabbed from an old CD of clipart).
As with all TiVo updates, no official change log is provided. However, TiVo’s User Experience Veep Margaret Schmidt has unofficially itemized notable additions and fixes on the TiVo Community forum. Amongst the interesting discoveries:
- Cox customers that had difficulty receiving “Plus Pak” channels should find that issue resolved.
- Customers experiencing pixelation in Amazon Video downloads should find that issue resolved.
- If you bring up the Guide over a recording, it now highlights the channel on the foreground tuner, rather than the lowest channel in the Guide.
- SELECT-PLAY-SELECT-9-SELECT now displays a clock (without seconds) in the upper right corner when using HD Menus.
As to what comes next, TiVo suggests they may actually finish the HDUI this year. Or, at least, move it forward.
- HD version of the Season Pass Manager
- HD version of the To Do List
- HD version of My Shows for Multi-Room Streaming