TiVo employee Bob Pony announces Multi-Room Viewing (transfer) and TiVoToGo are finally coming to Series 3 & TiVoHD. These are two long-awaited features absent from the newer devices and are set to debut sometime this November. Transfers can also interact with Series 2 boxes on your network, provided it's not HD content. About the only missing feature left is for TiVo to finally support TiVoToGo on the Mac. [Thanks Jeffrey!]
For the past few weeks, stories have been circulating about NBC pulling out of iTunes. There were claims that NBC wanted to price their shows higher and take a much bigger cut. Their deal was set to expire this December, but they gave notice last week that it would end early.
Everyone's been speculating on what would happen next -- if NBC would launch its own store or if they'd go with another technology. Looks like the answer is Amazon's Unbox for NBC. They've just announced this Fall's shows will all be at Amazon. Starting September 10th, they'll even be offering free preview downloads of Bionic Woman, a new series set to debut.
Personally, when looking at my iTunes store history on buying TV shows, I pick up quite a number of NBC stuff I didn't get a chance to see live last season. Though I can buy shows through Unbox and watch them on my TiVo (as opposed to my AppleTV), since Amazon released Unbox, I've only watched two movies. The picture quality was fairly low so in the future I could only see myself using Unbox again when there was no other option to get a show.
Logically, it seems like a step back for NBC's distribution levels, if you compared the numbers of every video-playing iPod (tens of millions?) and AppleTV sold, compared with the number of TiVos out there (a couple million standalones?). If I was going to sit at a computer and watch TV, I'd just watch it off NBC's own site, but when it comes to buying video for portable devices or my living room, I'm guessing NBC just reduced their reach. Then again, I'm sure Amazon isn't in the position that iTunes was in bargaining-wise, so NBC probably got the bigger chunk they wanted of the pie.
Over on the Snapstream blog, they announced Beyond TV 4.7 Beta. If you're a PC user with an iPhone or iPod, this sounds like a pretty nice way to automatically pull down your recorded shows to your handheld device each night.
iPhone owners with a Mac can continue to use EyeTV to pull down analog cable or OTA TV, and automate moving new shows to your device.
If I still had a 90 minute daily train commute, I would be all over these devices. Catching up on the previous night's shows each day would almost make going to work fun.
A friend of mine also named Matt recently canceled his cable and went with DirecTV. During the signup process he said two reps claimed TiVo software was coming to DirecTV boxes in a couple months.
I asked Matt for clarification on exactly what the DirecTV reps said and he told me this:
...they were both very convincing. The second guy even said "I have the paperwork on my desk right now." I'll keep my fingers crossed.
I'd be very surprised if DirecTV could work out a deal like this without anyone finding out (I have a feeling these same reps would be on various forums like tivocommunity leaking it), so I'm going to classify this as a wild rumor that is likely untrue, but with about a 1% chance of happening. Would the TiVo software run on HR20's? The upcoming HR21 Pro?
My guess is these DirecTV reps have been half-reading Engadget for the past year and crossed up the stories of TiVo releasing a OS updated to older Series 2 DirecTiVo combo boxes with the Comcast testing TiVo OS on their own boxes story.
Still, it'd make things interesting if it were true and since it came from a friend I trust, I'm posting it here.