TiVo Series3 & HD External Storage Arrives!

Dave Zatz —  October 16, 2007

Seems like just yesterday (or last month) TiVo began rolling out system software 9.1. And here we are today with 9.2 hitting some units… finally bringing that (official) eSATA storage goodness. I wonder if the rollout was kicked off early given the 9.1 buginess, no updated TiVo support pages, no advance notice from TiVo PR, and just a place holder:

Interested in adding a TiVo Verified storage device to your TiVo HD or Series3? Check back soon for details on this exciting new product.

My living room Series3 wasn’t one of today’s lottery winners. Maybe I’ll have better luck tomorrow. Maybe we’ll also learn if TiVo is providing branded drives or partnering with a Western Digital.

In addition to external storage, this S3/HD update also supports progressive downloads of Amazon Unbox on TiVo — meaning you can begin watching content as soon as it starts coming in, rather than waiting for the download to complete. Wonder if this also applies to TiVoCast?

(Many thanks to Christopher Walsh, AKA happyshow, for the timely photos!)

11 responses to TiVo Series3 & HD External Storage Arrives!

  1. This is awesome news for all. However, I do have one question: How does this affect those of us who are already using the kickstart method? I don’t want to accidentally erase all the stuff sitting on my drive so that I can use it legitimately.

  2. E, One person in the forum says his existing 500GB external drive is still working fine and now shows up under system info. Good news for the early adopters if it holds up!

  3. I’m really looking forward to this feature. The S3 has decent storage as is, but it’ll be so nice to have an extra 500gb to 1tb of storage.

  4. Dave,

    I think Western Digital is a good guess. If you think back to the initial Tivo announcement of the Series3 at CES in 2006 — actually, just look back to your own post based on megazone’s “quizzing Tivo about the Series3” (https://zatznotfunny.com/2006-01/tivos-series-3-lives/) — the eSATA drive shown was very clearly a Western Digital MyBook series (looks like a modern MyBook Premium, but with one blue circle, not concentric circles).

    Personally, I hope they get this info out ASAP. I can’t be sure, but I’m pretty suspicious that my use of an eSATA drive via the kickstart method lead to a corrupted OS and completely bricked S3 a few months back (Tivo kindly replaced the unit). I’d love to add an approved storage solution so I can get back to enjoying all that capacity.

  5. I’m a new Tivo owner and I was wondering if someone could explain how this software upgrade process works, it seems like my Tivo doesn’t upgrade even though I force it to connect to the service.

    Is there some sort of randomness involved where you just have to wait to be lucky to get the update? Right now i have version 8.1 something, just driving me a bit crazy that I can’t update!

  6. Tivo updates happen automatically during the daily service call/connection. Tivo rolls out updates slowly, so if there are any problems the can be corrected before too many people are affected. Plus it probably smooths spikes in bandwidth usage.

    Most of the time all you can do is wait. I don’t know if they are still doing this, but in the past there have occasionally been sign ups to receive updates early.

  7. Excellent! Now I can fill up my HD knowing that they will be saved longer!

  8. I don’t suppose this new update will fix any of the pixelization problems people on the message boards still seem to be having? I’m very keen on the new Series3/HD Tivos but am holding out until I’m sure they’ve fixed the problem.

  9. I’m waiting for the TiVo2Go feature to be added to the Series3HD! I gots to have my portability.

  10. Reid, you’re still having pixelation issues? what s/w version r u running? i’ve read on TCF that this has been resolved.

  11. I haven’t noticed pixelization issues on the Series3 I’ve had for over a year. (Using Motorola CableCARDs via Comcast.)