November 22, 2005 4:00 AM PST

FAQ: Behind TiVo's play for iPod, PSP

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Will it be free?
Not entirely. TiVoToGo does not cost extra, but TiVo says subscribers who want to port shows to the iPod or PSP "will need to purchase certain low-cost software." This could mean the company is relying at least partially on software created outside the company.

How much memory must my iPod or PSP have to watch a 30-minute show?
The supported video will need to be encoded in the H.264 format, and that should allow for 30 minutes of video in about 200MB of space.

How long will the process take?
Some estimates have two minutes required for every minute of content--hence TiVo's plan for overnight encoding and transferring. The entire process involves recording the show, transferring to a PC, encoding it, then transferring to the mobile device.

This sounds like a piracy nightmare for content owners.
It could be, but TiVo says it will use "watermark" technologies that will allow any shows being swapped on the Internet to be traced back to the account holder who originally recorded the show.

Apple just started selling a very limited number of shows for $1.99. It can't be thrilled to be facing competition from a company providing an unlimited number of free shows.
This does represent competition for Apple and could also be troubling for companies such as Disney that partnered with Apple to provide TV shows for a price. So far there has not been an official response.

This sounds like a tremendous opportunity for TiVo. Haven't 30 million iPods been sold?
Yes, but only a fraction are capable of playing videos because they've only been on the market a few weeks. By next March, Sony expects to have sold 14 million PSPs. TiVo's shares gained 4 percent to $5.50 on Monday; less than two years ago they were selling for about $12.

Mobile TV sounds like the next big thing. Where can I learn more about it?
Try this related CNET News.com FAQ from last month.

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12 comments

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Fix your features, not add new ones tivo
How bout you add WPA wireless support? what we have only been asking for it for 2+ years. Second how bout you get Sonic MyDVD, the official burning software of tivo2go, to work without crashing with tivo desktop 2.2?

That would be a better place to put your investments.
Posted by capfan12 (101 comments )
Reply Link Flag
BIG BROTHER & TiVo
The Microsoft Monopoly "partnered" with TiVo recently when pushing their MSMediaPC box.

Now, this will maybe work with iPod/Windows version, but the Mac OSX is not supported, but "we're working on it..."
MacWorld Expo January 2006 is just around the corner.
If I were TiVo, I would be very worried.
Posted by Llib Setag (951 comments )
Link Flag
get an older tivo box with a nic card installed
so you can transfer your shows to any pc, seems like they just keep making tivo worse instead of better
Posted by digitallysick (103 comments )
Reply Link Flag
"NIC CARD" isnt this a little redundant?
Common you computer geeks! NIC stand for Network Interface Card (NIC) when you say NIC CARD you are actually saying:
NETWORK INTERFACE CARD CARD...DUH!!!!

~mario
Posted by prelude619 (27 comments )
Link Flag
TVHarmony Autopilot already does this!
The Autopilot beta software available at <a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.tvharmony.com" target="_newWindow">http://www.tvharmony.com</a> already does this. You can schedule downloads from your standalone Tivo to your PC and then automatically transcode it for your Video iPod, PSP, or other mobile video player. It still maintains the DRM of the Tivo show by digitally watermarking it with the MAK of your Tivo. It seems to work very well although all features are not yet complete because it's still in Beta.
Posted by GT1Boy (3 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Beat them to it??
"A Mac version of the service is expected sometime next year."

While Mac users await compatibility, I wonder if Apple will deliver a
DVR solution - Mac mini + Front Row + DVR??
Posted by edgedesign (290 comments )
Reply Link Flag
BIG BROTHER & TiVo
The Microsoft Monopoly "partnered" with TiVo recently when pushing their MSMediaPC box.

Now, this will maybe work with iPod/Windows version, but the Mac OSX is not supported, but "we're working on it..."
coincidence...?

MacWorld Expo January 2006 is just around the corner.
If I were TiVo, I would be very worried.
Posted by Llib Setag (951 comments )
Reply Link Flag
I can already do this!
I have a ReplayTV and with "DVArchive" and "QuickTime Pro" (or an
application like "iSquint" and others) it's just download and
convert.
Posted by dmaccarn--2008 (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
Me too ---
But I prefer to use my laptop w/ DVArchive
Posted by dar2112 (1 comment )
Link Flag
Sounds like a great idea
Sounds like a great idea. I already have 2 Tivos and an iPod. I might even buy the newer version of the iPod if I can transfer TV shows to it.
Posted by lingsun (482 comments )
Reply Link Flag
There is no "devil in the details"
It's an obviously prejudicial statement to say "the devil is in the details." It implies some type of fraud where none exists. It shouldn't take a genius to figure out that having the proper Tivo, the proper iPod, and other hardware will be required to make all this work. The slam sounds like some whining by somebody who's mad they aren't going to bother creating software for the Mac. Hey, they're not going to support Windows 98SE either. Guess what? More users currently use 98SE than use any version of Apple's software.
Posted by lingsun (482 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Good ol' Bill....
... can't resist even the remotest opportunity to try to put down the
Mac. Almost sounds like a massive case of sour grapes. Or just
plain meanness.

Maybe someone should put down ol' Bill.
Posted by Earl Benser (4310 comments )
Link Flag
 

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