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The Good News and Bad News about New TiVo Features

There's been a recent update to TiVo boxes, enabling two famous and long-rumored features: Netflix support and Ads displayed while pausing/fast-forwarding. Both were first discussed on this site four years ago and it wasn't until this week that both finally became available for TiVo users.

The Netflix support is really good, exactly like using a dedicated Roku box. You add things to your Instant Queue on the Netflix website, then walk over to your TiVo to play them. Unfortunately you can't search for new movies from your couch and have to use a computer to interact with the Netflix website, but the the syncing is nearly instant and easy enough to use. Video quality is quite good and I had some low-end HD video that looked a lot like the AppleTV's 720p HD movies. Movie selection is limited to studios that allow for Netflix streaming but one of my favorite genres (Documentary) is well represented.

The ads displayed during fast forwarding has been a long time coming and raised quite a ruckus when it first was announced. Gizmodo has a screenshot of what they look like and say it's only on the older Series 2 boxes for now. On first glance it doesn't seem as invasive as I envisioned, but it does seem like a distraction from the way a TiVo is typically used.

December 9, 2008 in News, TiVo | Permalink | Comments (6)