Archives For TiVo

TiVo To Serve Yahoo! Content

Dave Zatz —  November 7, 2005


Though TiVo’s partnership with Netflix may have fallen apart, it hasn’t deterred them from pressing forward with their Internet strategy. Several news sources have revealed TiVo will begin serving up Yahoo! content using server-based HME technology, similar to the Fandango collaboration. The first apps slated for delivery are weather, traffic, and personal Yahoo! photo collections. As with all cool TiVo features, this functionality is limited to Series 2 stand-alone models.

NYTimes says: The deal will allow TiVo, which has been struggling to differentiate its service from generic video recorders offered by cable and satellite companies, to offer a range of content and services linked to the Internet. In coming months, TiVo users will be able to view on their televisions pictures that have been stored on the Yahoo Photos site, as well as local weather and traffic information from Yahoo. Notably absent from the deal is a way for TiVo users to watch video via Yahoo.

TiVo has partnered with Yahoo! to provide online scheduling via Yahoo! TV. One must link a Yahoo! account with a TiVo web account to utilize the service. While this new scheduling functionality is redundant, Yahoo! provides an easily browsed grid guide which is conspicuously absent from TiVo’s site. Previously, TiVo and AOL had a similar online scheduling relationship.

Yahoo! says: How do I schedule recordings on my TiVo® Series2™ DVR?

  • Yahoo! and TiVo have partnered to give you the ultimate remote control: the Web!
  • Now you can schedule recordings on your TiVo® box from any internet connection.
  • From any Yahoo! TV episode page, just click “Record to my TiVo box”.

Your request will be automatically sent to your home the next time your TiVo box connects. Please allow one hour if your TiVo is connected to broadband through your home network, 36 hours if your TiVo uses dialup.


TiVo 7.2.1 Dissected, With Pics

Dave Zatz —  October 29, 2005

TiVo 7-2-1Here’s a little more info and picture pr0n covering TiVo’s last Series 2 software release of 2005.

New Feature
The year concludes with a long overdue capability…

  • Overlap Protection

Notable Bug Fix
This doesn’t impact a whole lot of TiVo owners, though it’s a welcome correction.

  • Restored serial control of DirecTV HD receivers

Minor Enhancements
These are subtle changes which may or may not be apparent… they keyword is minor.

  • Wireless Stability & Performance
  • User Interface Performance

I assume there are the typical bug fixes and tweaks under the hood, and perhaps some unrevealed enhancements preparing for future TiVo services and HME-style applications as well. One can also hope that, despite the death of the Netflix deal, the technology has been put in place to provide VOD services via new partners.

Continue Reading…

TiVo Overlap Clip

It looks like TiVo system software 7.2.1 has begun rolling out for Series 2 models. As I previously reported, the highlight of this release is Overlap Protection – a method to deal with the networks staggering the traditional beginning and ending times of shows without missing a recording. Everything else appears to be under the hood tweaks. TiVo hasn’t established an upgrade priority list at this time – and they may not, as I’ve been told this is a “minor” release.

It turns out TiVo-hosted HME applications are not tied to 7.2.1 and can be enabled with 7.2 once TiVo flips the switch on their end (see Fandango). Based on conversations with Tivo representatives at DigitalLife, I expect we’ll start seeing these widgets as early as next month.

Tivo says: Overlap Protection gives you additional options for dealing with recording conflicts. Normally, when two programs overlap by a few minutes, the lower priority recording is cancelled. (For example, one program ends at 8:33, while the next program begins at 8:30) When you turn Overlap Protection on, the DVR automatically clips the lover priority recording by just enough minutes to allow both programs to record. When scheduling new recordings, the DVR notifies you of any recording conflict and gives you options for resolving it. If the Overlap Protection feature is on, your options include clipping the lower priority program.

NetflixNetflix has run into the studio brick wall. At this point the studios have very little incentive to move their media via third-party download: DVD sales are a huge cash cow and they own existing services Movielink and CinemaNow. I imagine both Netflix’s rumored player and their partnership with TiVo are indefinitely on hold. At least Netflix is in good company – based on the missing movie downloads, we can assume Apple is experiencing similar frustrations.

Reuters says: Netflix Inc. will postpone a test launch of its online movie download service indefinitely because of problems obtaining licensing agreements from Hollywood studios, Chief Executive Reed Hastings told analysts on a conference call on Wednesday. Hastings said the company would continue enhancing its infrastructure and developing technology to deliver online movies so the service “will be ready to launch when the content climate begins to thaw.”

Update: You can find the conference call audio here. Be sure to listen in about 1:22:15 – when asked about TiVo they respond, “no work going on,” “no content,” and “no point.” Ouch! Well it’s safe to say this deal is dead. Once the studios join us in the digital revolution, they’ll beef up their own services and partner with large stable companies that have a proven track record (sounds like Apple).

TiVo Pimps Fandango

Dave Zatz —  October 18, 2005

Another day, another HME application. Movie downloads? Nah, just movie ticket downloads.

If you were paying attention about 10PM EST last night, you would have caught a glimpse of Fandango‘s ticket ordering service. You know, for the one or two movies a year that might sell out. Put in your zip, buy some virtual tickets, show up at the theater to wait in line for real tickets. At least that’s how it’s supposed to work… a “Can’t Run” error spared me from the $1.25 ticket surcharge.

Continue Reading…

TiVo Apps.TV Launched

Dave Zatz —  October 17, 2005

While the website isn’t officially owned or operated by TiVo, is live and offers third-party Home Media Engine (HME) applications directly via broadband to Series 2 TiVo’s running 7.2x – no PC or Mac required. The current selection is small; However, a central clearinghouse of apps is a convenience that should encourage development and adoption of HME.