TiVo+ Video Streaming Weeks Away

TiVo has officially announced their Roku Channel and competitor in TiVo+

Available exclusively to TiVo customers in the coming weeks, TiVo+ delivers live streaming channels and thousands of movies and TV shows to viewers in an app-free environment, making them easy to find, watch, and enjoy.

Listed below are the TiVo+ content providers at launch, but TiVo indicates there will be “many more to follow:”

Adventure Sports Network, AllTime, Ameba, America’s Funniest Home Videos, Baeble Music, BatteryPOP, Complex, FailArmy, FilmRise Classic TV, FilmRise Family, FilmRise Free Movies, Food52, Football Daily, Hell’s Kitchen | Kitchen Nightmares, Journy, Kid Genius, NatureVision, Outside TV+, People Are Awesome, PowerNation, Puddle Jumper, The Asylum, The Pet Collective, The Preview Channel, TMZ, Unsolved Mysteries.

I’ll go ahead and assume the same pre-roll ad technology is being brought to bear in this space to generate revenue for the company and its partners. And it appears, at least initially, that each content provider gets a tile vs the more category-centric approach that the Roku Channel takes to populate its guide. So TiVo+ looks to be essentially apps within an app at launch. However, TiVo+ can also be accessed directly from the grid guide (as marketed above) and signs suggest it’ll receive high level billing within the interface near ‘What to Watch’. Along those lines, the success of TiVo+ hinges on TiVo’s ability to execute the plan they laid out in 2018 to full integrate this video amongst our live television, DVR recordings, and streaming apps like Netflix: a truly universal content recommendation and search engine.

22 thoughts on “TiVo+ Video Streaming Weeks Away”

  1. Meh- would’ve been better if they could have built a sling tv like service that would’ve integrated seamlessly into the native interface, dvr and all.

  2. So is this the Roku channel they’ve been promising or will there be another one coming with functionality similar to the TiVo Mini (streaming live TV or recorded shows from a TiVo box already on your network) ? I was holding out hope I could replace some aging TiVo hardware with a Roku channel vs purchasing new hardware.

  3. The success of TiVo+, much like any streaming service, hinges on the content. And that is some of the worst content I have seen.

  4. Brian, the “Roku Channel” is a Roku app of free content (also some content subscriptions). This is not TiVo’s Roku app that would provide Mini-esque functionality. Hopefully still coming and soon… but saddened and surprised it wasn’t mentioned at Edge launch.

  5. Since it’s free if it only has a _preroll_ ad that could actually be highly attractive as pretty much everything else shows interstitial ads. Depending on the quality of the content they manage to license, of course.

    That said if it’s only on TiVo devices, I’m not sure anyone will really care.

  6. Paul, I assume this service will be symbiotic with TiVo’s upcoming $50 streaming stick initiative – they’ll feed, promote each other. Time will tell. The landscape is crowded. And I’m reminded of the $1b in cash they were sitting on a few years back… what else could they have done with it?

  7. The streaming stick has a real chance at success, since it runs Android TV. You’re right, this is a natural fit for that device.

    This may be Rovi’s play at the streaming market. But if it is, man, that initial lineup is looking grim.

  8. WoW. All the hype for this combination at startup? Where are the NBC, CBS, CNN, PBS, and all the other apps which are readily available on virtually every streaming stick and Apple TV? I’m sorry…even as a loyal TiVo customer for decades I’m underwhelmed…at least initially.

  9. This is TiVo’s streaming channel, like the Roku channel, a collection of content they specifically licensed to stream. The TiVo stick is an androidTV device so it will assumedly let you run all the various apps for NBC, CBS, Netflix, etc.

  10. I’m underwhelmed by the Tivo+ offerings. I would rather see Tivo make something like accessing my YouTube subscriptions easier and display them in My Shows.

  11. At first I thought the channel list was a joke. Then I realized it was a real list.

    I would almost never watch those. Especially with them having ads.

  12. I might watch the preview channel. Other channels meh.

    I guess the real question that comes to mind is- if the tivo stick has Android TV with all the main apps (abc, nbc, espn, Amazon video, hboNOW(!!) and hundreds of others like Roku and Apple have…. Will my Tivo box get Android TV and all the apps I keep asking for?

  13. I might watch the preview channel. Other channels meh.

    I guess the real question that comes to mind is- if the tivo stick has Android TV with all the main apps [abc, nbc, espn, Amazon video, hboNOW(!!) and hundreds of others like Roku and Apple have….] Will my Tivo box get Android TV and all the apps I keep asking them for?

  14. Dave, it must be hard to report terrible news week after week with Tivo, just as it is hard to read. For those that think this plus the dongle will be a hit, I’m telling you now that’s is very unlikely short of millions of dollars of marketing and much better partnerships. Apple is going to have a hard time catching up and those people are zealots. Most people don’t have Tivo anymore and why but an improved device with likely lower specs than what Amazon offers for 29 bucks on sale with a huge amount of support or Chromecast,Roku,etc. At least if Tivo is going to crash the plane you would expect them to do it quickly and it looks like they are going to. The whole thing makes me sad as Tivo has had so much opportunity squandered by bad management.

  15. Dave, thanks for your update. As the bearer of bad news, you may sometimes feel underappreciated….but its not your fault.
    The content lineup is a fail right out of box. Tivo’s competitive advantage over cable boxes is diminished, with the Roku, AppleTV, Firestick hardware now available. Add the change in content away from the big networks to the streamers, and there isn’t much reason to own a Tivo any longer. The tivo dvr is decent, but that’s not enough. This new content lineup is a not adding anything.

    My wife has made the switch from being a longtime tivo user to now liking firestick/HuluTv/netflix/HBO….its cheaper than cable, and its portable to more than one house.

  16. @Mark: Unfortunately there’s no indication that the core TiVo DVR will run on AndroidTV. I’ve been saying they should do that for like ten years now, but they keep trying (and failing) to do streaming themselves. Not that I completely blame them for failing that, it’s a herculean task competing with the likes of Roku, Amazon, Apple, and Google for app count and quality!

  17. @Paul T, yep, I’ve been saying for years now too that TiVo should move to Google’s Android TV platform (or, short of that, their own implementation of open-source Android, as Amazon did with Fire TV). It’s the only way that TiVo can possibly gain access to a decent app ecosystem.

    But as you say, there are questions around the technological and licensing feasibility of running a full-scale retail TiVo CableCARD DVR atop Android TV. But I do expect their forthcoming TiVo Android TV stick to have built-in TiVo Mini-like capabilities so that it can fetch live and recorded TV from actual TiVo DVRs on the same wifi network.

    Perhaps the next step beyond that would be for TiVo to roll out a less expensive Tablo-like headless network DVR which would be operated/viewed by their Android TV stick as well as other streamers like Roku and Apple TV using the forthcoming TiVo+ app for those devices. Whether or not a CableCARD version of such a network DVR would be feasible, at least an OTA version could be made. In fact, TiVo almost released such a product, the Mavrik, a couple years ago. Maybe OTA DVR service could be free with a bunch of TiVo-streamed unskippable ads in your recordings or instead priced at $7/mo or $70/yr, with pricing and features the same as the new TiVo Edge for Antenna. (BTW, that compares to $5/mo or $50/yr for DVR service from Tablo and $8/mo or $80/yr from Channels Plus.)

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