It's been online for a few days now, but I just spotted (via PaidContent) Forbes' article titled The iFlop (subhead: "Steve Jobs tried to design--and dictate--the future of television. Here's how he failed.") Author Scott Woolley calls the Apple TV "a flat-out" failure, claiming that it's sold less than 250,000 units in six months. Among the supposed sins of the product: the lack of a built-in DVR and a "parochial and proprietary approach" to online video content. He also highlights a variety of on-demand video competitors, including Vudu, TiVo (via Amazon Unbox), and Xbox 360 (which offers rentals and sales of TV shows via the Xbox Live Marketplace)--while glossing over many of their shortcomings. Still, is he right? Is the Apple TV dead in the water? … Read more
While a cheaper Series 3 TiVo has certainly kicked around the rumor mill for some time now--and was essentially confirmed by CEO Tom Rogers earlier this year--the rumors have a new air of legitimacy, thanks to the posters at TiVo Community. While "Super Moderators" such as Mike Lang have been coyly hinting that the rumors are true since last Friday, yesterday posts containing images and detailed specs of the new Series 3 "Lite" showed up, along with links to the product page at Buy.com. This all adds up to pretty solid confirmation that we should … Read more
It has been my theory for a little while that sometime in the near future, we are going to see the downfall of physical discs for watching movies. A lot of companies are moving towards a downloadable model. Most notably, Apple sells downloadable movies through its iTunes store and even pipes them through to its own set-top box. Microsoft also sells movies through its Video Marketplace on the Xbox 360 in both standard and high definition.
The Free Software Foundation last week released the third version of the GNU General Public License-- GPL 3 (also known as GPLv3).
This CNET News article explains the new features of GPL 3, which the FSF hopes will be adopted by most open-source developers in place of the GPL 2 license. The older GPL 2 will remain available, however.
FSF founder and president Richard M. Stallman has devoted his entire career to making free software--and to making software free. A strong opponent of copyrights, patents, digital-rights management, and all other legal or technical constructs that limit the freedom of software … Read more
TiVo introduced a new search function Tuesday, which is designed to let its subscribers perform a continuous search through a unique thread to find programming or downloadable content.
Instead of punching in a keyword to find a movie or TV episode to watch, Universal Swivel Search allows searching to begin from a particular program. If someone is watching an episode of Lost, clicking on "More Options" in the menu brings up a program synopsis and the cast. Clicking on cast names brings up the other programs each actor is in, showtimes and if any is available for download through Amazon Unbox … Read more
Andy and Tina Szeto take TV very seriously--so much so that their wedding this past Saturday not only celebrated their new life together, but also their favorite television gadget: TiVo. The San Jose, Calif., couple decided on a television-themed reception, which was held at a San Francisco hotel. "TiVo rules our TV world," bride Tina, 37, said in an interview with CNET News.com. "We describe ourselves as a little bit crazy, a little bit weird."
"Our lives are all around TV, really. All our friends know we enjoy TV. It was only fitting we … Read more
Most of the swag companies proffer to entice reporters to write about them is predictable and boring--pens, book bags, shirts, etc. You know, things I can buy myself, thank you. But it's not every day I receive swag that's so utterly ridiculous I feel the need to blog about it. (So, good job, Hazmat Media, whoever you are.)
Inside a nondescript padded envelope delivered to my desk yesterday was a two-page, single-spaced missive titled, "My TiVo Gets Me." Best of all, it was accompanied by a black, felt headband sporting TiVo antenna ears.
According to the … Read more
Starting today, people can starting TiVoing you.
TiVo announced that it will let users send content, such as video montages and photos, over the TiVo network.
Anyone can go to OneTrueMedia.com, create an account, upload a video, add a soundtrack, use One True Media's basic editing tools and create a personal TiVo channel. The video creator can invite any TiVo Series2 or Series3 owners to subscribe to that particular channel. Subscribers can add the new channel to their Season Pass; all videos uploaded to that channel will be delivered to each user's Now Playing list.
Of course, … Read more
It's been so long we almost forgot about it, but Verizon Wireless finally delivered on its year-old promise to bring TiVo services to cell phones. As a refresher, TiVo Mobile will allow Verizon customers to schedule recordings on their Series2 and Series3 DVRs from their phones. That's pretty neat by itself but Verizon also is pushing a selection of "premium content" that will come with a TiVo Mobile subscription. Included will be a customizable channel lineup, the most popular and most recorded shows, and a current list of TiVo recommendations. The service is available for a … Read more
Amazon Unbox on TiVo launched yesterday, which means TiVo subscribers will be able to download selected Amazon Unbox videos straight to their TiVo box. We were pretty excited about the announcement, because at first glance Amazon Unbox on TiVo looks to be a possible replacement for a DVD renting service like Netflix, or Pay-Per-View services available on cable or satellite. The service works on any broadband connected Series2 or Series3 TiVo, and we took it for a spin on our Series2 TiVo.
We had absolutely no trouble linking our TiVo with our Amazon account, and we were selecting movies in just a couple of clicks. The interface to select movies will be familiar to anyone who has used Amazon, which is to say it's pretty painless. The only knock we had is that Amazon doesn't seem 100-percent ready for TiVo fans, as the method of filtering TiVo-transferable files from other Amazon Unbox files is just using the search term "tivo" in the Unbox section. A separate section of Amazon Unbox would be preferable.
We found the initial selection to be a little meager. Not all Amazon Unbox videos are available to be transferred to TiVos, presumably because of the need to convert the files to a TiVo-friendly format. As of press time, 1,433 videos were labeled "TiVo", which is a combination of TV shows and movies. Sure, that's a lot of videos for any one person to watch, but it's not much of a library. However, Amazon claims it will be adding new titles every week, so you can expect this library to grow. In terms of cost, most movies we saw were $15 to buy and $4 to rent, while TV shows were $2 to buy.… Read more