Your Unsubscribed TiVo Premiere Has Been Devalued

I was tipped off a couple months ago, but it has just now registered that an unsubscribed TiVo Premiere can no longer be activated. As in: you should neither buy nor sell an unsubscribed TiVo Premiere on ebay. And had you been hoping to rekindle the joy with a decommissioned unit in your closet, well it’s time to rethink those plans.

It seems a bit odd that TiVo would leave potential subscription revenue on the table like this… unless they already have a timeline to similarly sunset Lifetimed Premieres to more universally cease support. Which wouldn’t be entirely unreasonable as the Premiere line launched way back in 2010… and we know the company’s current interests lie elsewhere.

While the Premiere admirably served its purpose as my DVR hub for many years, I wasn’t particularly amazed at launch and this TiVo line was possibly most notable for its sluggishness, given an Adobe software platform that exceeded the hardware’s specifications and capabilities, along with a new HDUI… that took 7 years to complete.

(Thanks krkaufman!)

12 thoughts on “Your Unsubscribed TiVo Premiere Has Been Devalued”

  1. My Lifetime Plan Premiere XL 4 has operated flawlessly since day one several years ago while I’m now on my 3rd Bolt + in three years due to failed hard drives and circuit boards. My Premiere is also the backbone of my system as my MOCA hub point. Even when my Bolt hiccups, fails to record, and exhibits odd behavior the Premiere is my backup backbone recording away day and night. Yes, it is dated, a little sluggish, and it doesn’t do 4K but it just works.

    I now know that when it dies, it goes to the TiVo Graveyard. I will consider I got more than my money’s worth out of this workhorse.

  2. I also have a Premiere XL4 with Lifetime that serves as a backup for when my Bolt+ has issues. That means it sits in a box unused for several months at a time. Is there any concern that Tivo is going to start deactivating Lifetime boxes that haven’t phoned home in a certain amount of time?

  3. I prolonged my Premiere’s life by running it headless for awhile, using Minis at every television as the interface was far more sprightly. Bolt had/has various issues. Glad I skipped that gen. Was contemplating a move from Roamio to Edge, when TiVo pushed me away.

    Bax, with the last round of decommissioning, the boxes had to be active to receive a $100 Lifetime transfer deal. So, yeah, it might be worth keeping this thing online.

  4. Unlike some of the Roamio’s I think the Premiere’s still had the ability to record OTA. TiVo has used up any last bits of customer goodwill.

    My electric bill dropped considerably when I cut the cord and unplugged my Premiere, Roamio, the two Cisco Switched Digital Video adapter boxes, and the last cable box.

    I’m happy to have cut the cord with my cable company and spectrum.

    I’m currently using a Tivo Stream 4K android streaming stick, but I barely use the TiVo app any more. I haven’t seen a lot of value in it, though I may not have given it enough time to find a good niche for it. The Android TV home screen is useful enough.

  5. Several years ago, my All In Premier XL was borked when TiVo pushed out an update. I found out that I wasn’t the only customer this happened to. Since I had an extended warranty on it, TiVo offered to replace it with a Bolt+, which I accepted, and shipped the Premier XL off to TiVo.

    I went through several Bolt+ units over the years because of defective hard drives. I have decided that when the current Bolt+ dies, I am not going to pay to upgrade my All In to a Edge, since Comcast is continuing to move more and more channels in my town to IPTV.

  6. I have to agree about the Bolts; I’m also on my third one for the same reasons. My Premier upstairs just died and I gave up and got a Roku for that TV, although I miss the ability to pause and rewind lice TV. My 3rd Bolt is working fine (for now). Possibly the Premier issue is related to it not supporting the latest software versions.

  7. A year ago I upgraded my two Premiere XL units to an Edge and streaming Lux unit and they both work perfectly. It also saved me money no longer needing two subscriptions. The Edge has 6 tuners also I am set

  8. I had a Tivo Premiere XL with lifetime service in my downstairs family room. My son moved home for 5 months and unplugged the box. When he left I plugged in the box and it would not connect with the service at all. I called customer service and an Indian lady spent 40 minutes trying to connect getting a message saying it would take an hour. I hung up and no success overnight. To my surprise she called back a week later to check with me. I bought a bolt with lifetime from Weaknees. The lesson from this is keep your box plugged in and connected to ethernet or you may lose your service.

  9. Bax I will definitely keep your TiVo plugged in and hooked up to cat 5 going to the router so it continues to check in any update the guide. Even if you’re not using it.
    I think you will be very sorry if you don’t.
    I had to take the cat 5 wire off of our TiVo to hook it up to the smart TV.
    After a week or two the tv guide stopped updating. Because it wasn’t communicating and that was fine we knew it. We were still watching the TiVo changing channels from it.
    I kept switching the cat 5 wire to update then back to the TV.
    Then I forgot to do it for a while
    After a month it started acting real flaky.
    It wouldn’t let you change channels anymore among other things.
    I had to jump through hoops to get it back online I am working on updating correctly.
    And yes it is a all in one Lifetime.
    On a side note does anyone know how to use a tiVo to hook up RCA video cable from a camera to record surveillance straight to the TiVo?
    I could use the advice on any TiVo model I have a bunch of them.

  10. Yes, the Premiere was a sluggish MESS in the early years. But, when they switched to Hoxie (IIRC the name), the Series 4 became a reliable DREAM and a workhorse along side my S3’s that still do their CORE job as DVR without flaw. My Premieres are all “Lifetime” or the now “All-in” so I should have them as mostly storage units for as long as TiVo permits us to use our TiVo DVRs.

  11. heh, I just replaced the drive in an XL4 with a new 3tb and it’s still cranking along providing TV in a rec room.

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