While the cord-cutter-centric TiVo Bolt Aereo Edition was scrapped, prior to release, TiVo’s re-evaluated market conditions and unveiled the Bolt OTA DVR. And it represents a pretty significant upgrade over its Roamio OTA predecessor, including native streaming to mobile apps and a bundled voice-control remote. Timing of the $250 device may appear challenging given Amazon’s Fire TV Recast announcement and marketing weight — the similarly specced 4-tuner, 1TB Recast runs $280, but free of fees. However, increased situational awareness, given Amazon’s marketing muscle, should benefit TiVo, Tablo, and HDHomeRun… with TiVo providing a somewhat more accessible approach, given traditional television output versus overcoming network tuner conceptual issues. Beyond core DVR capabilities, TiVo also bundles a number of native apps, like Netflix and YouTube. Plus, TiVo has sweetened the pot for potentially price sensitive cord cutters by reducing service fees to $6.99/mo or $70/yr, which seems entirely reasonable.
Having said that, some of those competitors stream to all sorts of inexpensive boxes… vs having to pick up a TiVo Mini for each television. Well, I’ve got some good news and some bad news. TiVo’s service provider IPTV endpoints are being reworked, expanded and, in talking to TiVo VP Ted Malone, they hope to release these Roku, Fire TV, and Apple TiVo “soft Mini” clients to retail TiVo owners in the first half of 2019. No fees.