April 18, 2005 4:00 AM PDT

Search giants court TiVo

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TiVo is in talks with Internet search giants Google and Yahoo over a possible deal aimed at bridging television and the Web, CNET News.com has learned.

The talks are still fluid and could result in a number of outcomes, two sources familiar with the negotiations said.

One scenario that's been discussed would see TiVo partner with Google or Yahoo on a new service that would let consumers search for videos on the Web and then watch them on their television sets, according to one person with knowledge of the talks, who spoke on condition of anonymity.


What's new:
Digital video recorder company TiVo is talking with Internet search giants Google and Yahoo about a possible deal aimed at bridging television and the Web, CNET News.com has learned.

Bottom line:
A partership between TiVo and a major Internet search engine would offer expansion opportunities for both. TiVo has long talked about becoming the "Google of TV," and Google and Yahoo are investing heavily in video services.

More stories on this topic

A second person familiar with the talks said TiVo has held talks with both Google and Yahoo about a potential equity investment, including the possibility of an outright acquisition. Any deal would likely be exclusive, this source said, Nothing has been finalized, however, and the talks could yet fall apart.

"A deal to cooperate could happen quickly, but then the details would have to be worked out," the first source said. "The search companies need to work with companies like TiVo because they have access to the living room, and they own a television interface."

A TiVo representative declined to comment for this report. Jennifer Feikin, director of Google Video, said she could not comment on any TiVo talks at this time. Yahoo spokeswoman Kathryn Kelly said the company does not comment on rumors and speculation.

A partnership between TiVo and a major Internet search engine would offer expansion opportunities for both. TiVo has long talked about becoming the "Google of TV," eventually enabling its 3 million subscribers to search for and watch any broadcast or broadband media. Though TiVo opened the door for video downloads straight from the Web, it does not yet offer such a feature.

Meanwhile, Google and Yahoo are investing heavily in video services.

Google this week began soliciting video submissions to its searchable broadcast archives, inviting small and major producers alike to host or sell playback of their work using its servers. The project builds on

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TiVo is still looking...
.. for some way to survive it's own stupidity. The world needs a
new DVR design to put TiVo out of it's misery.
Posted by Earl Benser (4310 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Putting TiVo out of its misery...
is apparently harder than one might think. TiVo has been the top selling DVR forever. Action Replay went broke but are still limping along. Comcast and the other cable giants push their own DVRs but only a few are as user friendly as TiVo. TiVo is on the right track, they are securing their intellectual properties and patents, they are working deals with Comcast, and doing away with their rebate system.

Some things they need to address:
Dual tuners
Inexpensive HD content

Maybe this partnering with Search Giants is the next step in the Tivolution?
Posted by (34 comments )
Link Flag
Good Idea
I think this sounds like a good idea. The problem will be with the cable and tv operators. They are not going to want this to occur. There is nothing in it for them. Plus advertising dollars will be lost unless there is a way to advertise either during or before the broadcast. I hope it happens, but I think it take some time for it to happen.
Posted by Shawn Lane (20 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Fire Molly Wood
Fire Molly Wood.
Posted by montgomeryburns (109 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Getting TiVo out of the box
These talks could be very strategic, as a major step toward creating a new service category and cementing TiVo's place in the media world. This is described in my blog entry <a href="http://www.teleshuttle.com/UCM/2005/03/new-blue-ocean-strategy-for-tivo.html">A New "Blue Ocean Strategy" for TiVo</a> and related posts.

Tivo as a DVR box is little more than a commodity, but TiVo as "TV your way" and as "an easy way to find and control content from any broadcast or broadband source" is an important new "media concierge" service.

The power is in getting out of the box, and in serving the user as a media broker -- not being overly wedded to any content source or any media gateway box. (Google may be more tuned to being content source agnostic, and not pushing its own content, but Yahoo could do that as well.) A TiVo concierge service could favor Tivo boxes and its portal's own content, but fails the user if it does not also address all content and all boxes.
Posted by (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
Why TiVo needs Google ?
Well i dont think why TiVo will marry google. More thoughts are here...

<a class="jive-link-external" href="https://rajatgupta.wordpress.com/2006/05/26/why-tivo-needs-google/" target="_newWindow">https://rajatgupta.wordpress.com/2006/05/26/why-tivo-needs-google/</a>
Posted by rajat81 (1 comment )
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