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Old 05-15-2008, 06:43 AM   #1
davezatz
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Lifetime Service Resurrected

I received word last night that Lifetime Service is being permanently resurrected out of promotional status. (Well, as permanent as these things go...) Not sure how good a deal it is ($399/year or $299/year for secondary units), but wanted to share.
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Old 05-15-2008, 07:17 AM   #2
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If you log into your TiVo account and select "Price Plans" The $299.00 is showing up know as an option now.

Thanks,
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Old 05-15-2008, 07:18 AM   #3
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I thought the reason TiVo got rid of Lifetime service was that it wasn't cost-effective. What changed?
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Old 05-15-2008, 07:23 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by davezatz View Post
I received word last night that Lifetime Service is being permanently resurrected out of promotional status. (Well, as permanent as these things go...) Not sure how good a deal it is ($399/year or $299/year for secondary units), but wanted to share.
After 10 years, that'd have cost $3,990 and $2,990, respectively. Not much of a bargain! Did TiVo mention why they'd charge annually for lifetime on a unit?


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Old 05-15-2008, 07:37 AM   #5
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Crap, I broke my rule of no posting prior to morning coffee.
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Old 05-15-2008, 07:45 AM   #6
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Thumbs up Yippie!

Good for TiVo! The option of Lifetime Service for $399 (or $299 for additional units) is apparently good for TiVo and definitely good for its customers regardless of which payment plan they ultimately choose.

https://www3.tivo.com/store/home.do
(Click on TiVo service pricing.)

Existing TiVo customers now also have the options of monthly service for $9.95 or annual service for $99.95 on additional units!
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Old 05-15-2008, 08:05 AM   #7
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All of my units (and units I bought for others - 8 total) are on Lifetime except one. That one is monthly. Is it possible to switch that to Lifetime now ? The last time I checked I was told I could deactivate the Tivo - add it to my Account - lifetime it - then give it back to my brother.

Would be much easier if I could just upgrade his in place.

UPDATE : I logged into my brother's account. I can add a new S2 DT w/Lifetime for $389. If I ordered that and have it shipped to him - he'll have 2 TiVo's - the original (on monthly) and the new (on Lifetime). Once he receives the new one, then I could cancel the monthly one, right ? I'll just have him ship it to back to me - maybe I'll add it to my account (for a fourth).

This way, he is getting Lifetime and a new S2 DT - seems like a better way to go, right ?

Last edited by clam729 : 05-15-2008 at 08:11 AM.
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Old 05-15-2008, 09:38 AM   #8
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I don't understand the $399/299. Now, $399 is only available to tivo owners, but they have no problem if I buy it and then give to a friend. Is the same true of the $299 option, or are they somehow going to try and monitor (like with MSD) whether it's still at my house? What if I buy it, and have it at my house for a couple of years, and then decide to sell it? Will it lose lifetime? That doesn't seem like such a good deal.
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Old 05-15-2008, 09:51 AM   #9
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Yeah, I could use some clarification on the $299 option more generally.

Does it mean that you have to have at least one other machine that is either lifetime (at $399 or earlier purchase) or is on a full-price subscription?

What would happen if after buying the $299 sub you dropped the full-price unit (say, because the contract ran out)?
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Old 05-15-2008, 09:56 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Amnesia View Post
I thought the reason TiVo got rid of Lifetime service was that it wasn't cost-effective. What changed?
Presumably at the time they thought that they were better off getting $299 for 3 years instead of for a lifetime. Now maybe they've concluded that $400 is better than $300 and that people upgrade their units frequently enough that it's not really costing them much. That is, if the typical Tivo person buys another tivo after 3 years they would typically replace the old unit anyway, so letting them keep the second unit with "free" service (i.e., continued lifetime) isn't really giving up revenue, but is consumer friendly.
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:01 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by DrewTivo View Post
Yeah, I could use some clarification on the $299 option more generally.

Does it mean that you have to have at least one other machine that is either lifetime (at $399 or earlier purchase) or is on a full-price subscription?

What would happen if after buying the $299 sub you dropped the full-price unit (say, because the contract ran out)?
This is my question as well.
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:04 AM   #12
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I thought the reason TiVo got rid of Lifetime service was that it wasn't cost-effective. What changed?
Well, for one thing, Dish Network is about to hand over hundreds of millions of dollars to them.....

http://biz.yahoo.com/ap/080515/tivo_...bell.html?.v=1
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:05 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by Adam1115 View Post
Well, for one thing, Dish Network is about to hand over hundreds of millions of dollars to them.....

http://biz.yahoo.com/ap/080515/tivo_...bell.html?.v=1
I have a hard time reading much actual info in that article. It seems to be mostly speculation. Any of us could do that.
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:06 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Adam1115 View Post
Well, for one thing, Dish Network is about to hand over hundreds of millions of dollars to them.....

http://biz.yahoo.com/ap/080515/tivo_...bell.html?.v=1
That has nothing to do with anything. If it was profitable before Dish, it's profitable now. If not, not. I'm guessing they learned from the "limited" availability of lifetime that it was a good idea--clearly Tivo hasn't figured out consumer behavior very well, which is why they keep changing their pricing plan options.
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:14 AM   #15
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I'm not sure $400 is a good price just to get the guide data - that's really all it is... can't be that expensive for them to harvest it from tvguide.com... and to grace me with allowing me to use equipment I purchased (since you cannot record without service).

Last edited by cliffr39 : 05-15-2008 at 10:23 AM.
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:20 AM   #16
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I thought the reason TiVo got rid of Lifetime service was that it wasn't cost-effective. What changed?
I don't recall the exact time-frame of that assessment, but it was four or five years ago that I read about that in one of their annual reports.

In addition to the lifetime service costing more now, TiVo actually makes money on the sale of their DVRs, instead of losing money or breaking even, which during that prior time-frame, was part of the equation.

Its also possible that they've lowered their costs associated with offering the service, so that may also make it financially attractive to offer the lifetime once again, but that is just speculation on my part.

All in all, I wouldn't apply the assessment of five years ago to today's circumstances; clearly a lot has changed internally and externally for TiVo.

I'm just glad that the lifetime is now available to everyone, and not just existing customers; we've had a lot of folks, especially DIRECTV / TiVo customers with lifetime on their older DirecTiVo boxes that have been ineligible for these promotions.

Lou
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:22 AM   #17
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I'm not sure $400 is a good price just to get the guide data - that's really all it is... and to grace me with allowing me to use equipment I purchased (since you cannot record without service).
If you use the equipment for more than 31 months, it is a good deal. Especially if you consider selling your unit somewhere down the line, because that lifetime service will retain a good portion of its value (if not all of it) to the next person who ends up using it.
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:27 AM   #18
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I'm not sure $400 is a good price just to get the guide data - that's really all it is... can't be that expensive for them to harvest it from tvguide.com... and to grace me with allowing me to use equipment I purchased (since you cannot record without service).
You can't just scrape listings from tvguide.com and use them for commercial purposes.

Tivo buys their guide data from Tribune Media, and you can bet that it's for commercial purposes, the rates aren't as cheap as you would think.

Not to mention that you're also paying for support and continued software development, bringing the addition of features that make a Tivo "a Tivo" and not just some run on the mill cableco DVR that does one thing (poorly).
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:27 AM   #19
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I'm not clear on the $399 vs. $299. If I already own a TiVo or 2 and I buy a new one, will I pay $399 or $299 for service? Or is it if I buy 2 or more new TiVos that I pay $399 for the first TiVo and $299 for any additional TiVos?

I just went to tivo.com to check this out and it has $399 for lifetime, but that it expired 2/18/08 and that $299 is for three years. There must be another link that I missed.
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:32 AM   #20
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Cool.
I have one Series 2 with lifetime, and one Series 3 with MSD at $6.95/month, with two years remaining. If I bought a third TiVo (TiVoHD), would I be able to put Lifetime on it for $299?

Would I be able to transfer my MSD service to the new TiVoHD and buy Lifetime for the Series 3? Which one do you guys think is the unit with the most longevity, Series 3 or TiVoHD?
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:41 AM   #21
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If you log into your account at tivo.com, the pricing will be displayed for you.

nirisahn, I would guess $299. One thing we noticed on the site is that the 'popup' that appears when you get the plan details is showing the older promotion information on one of our computers, and the newer info on a different one.

MickeS, your next TiVo purchase would cost $299 for the lifetime service. I don't think you can do any transferring, but you should also be able to (and should have always been able to) purchase a lifetime on the 2nd unit you have, but that is something I'd check with TiVo on.

A new Series3 and a new TiVo HD should last about the same length of time, the most common failure point in either unit is a hard drive, and that is easily replaced. Beyond that, its essentially a crap shoot.

But, the Series3 will disappear from the market sooner, rather than later (unless something changes) so if you value those extra features, you may not want to wait too much longer. But all in all, these units are pretty much the same.
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Old 05-15-2008, 10:51 AM   #22
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In addition to the lifetime service costing more now, TiVo actually makes money on the sale of their DVRs, instead of losing money or breaking even, which during that prior time-frame, was part of the equation.
I also thing TiVo sees more revenue oppurtunity in the active susbscriptions from 3rd party deals likes ads and Tivocasts and UNBOX. Also TiVo may see good revenue generation in moving older lifetime to a new box for 199$ that they bring out every so often. That is different from a 6 or 7 year old S1 still hanging on their cost structure.

Plus they just may have seen the light that a substantial group of consumsers just do not like any plan but pay once and be done.

Now I have to deal with considering if 299/6.95* = 43 months is worth a lifetime or not

* - old grandfathered month to month sub.
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Old 05-15-2008, 11:02 AM   #23
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I want the Lifetime Service for the Web Special Refurb TiVo HD!!!
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Old 05-15-2008, 11:10 AM   #24
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Do you have to have more than one Tivo to get lifetime service? I have an HD Tivo that I bought last December and pay monthly service on. I went to the mange my account page and I do not have an option to change to lifetime service. Can I call Tivo and set it up that way?
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Old 05-15-2008, 11:31 AM   #25
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I just got lifetime on a second S3 box in February for $399 (since at that time it was only available until 2/13/08). I just got off the phone with them to request a $100 credit and had no luck since I was out of the 30 day window. It sucks that activating 60 days too early cost me an extra $100.
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Old 05-15-2008, 11:32 AM   #26
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so if I have a 2 Tivo's right now. One is activated and has lifetime on it. The other isn't activated. I should be able to get the $299 lifetime for the second unit right? And when you say that it's not transferable, that doesn't mean that later down the line I can't sell that $299 unit right?
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Old 05-15-2008, 11:48 AM   #27
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so if I have a 2 Tivo's right now. One is activated and has lifetime on it. The other isn't activated. I should be able to get the $299 lifetime for the second unit right?
it seems so, yes.
Quote:
And when you say that it's not transferable, that doesn't mean that later down the line I can't sell that $299 unit right?
No, it means that you can't transfer that lifetime service to a brand new Series 5 in 2012.
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Old 05-15-2008, 11:50 AM   #28
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So if I just bought a lifetime in the last 2 weeks for $399 I can get a $100 refund by calling them?
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Old 05-15-2008, 12:03 PM   #29
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So if I just bought a lifetime in the last 2 weeks for $399 I can get a $100 refund by calling them?
If you're within the 30 day window, then you should be able to call and cancel, then resub with this deal (although the CSR should just make it easy and do the adjustment for you).
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Old 05-15-2008, 12:36 PM   #30
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Just called them and they credited my account with $100. My HD tivo with Lifetime subscription now cost me $500 total as I got in on the $200 HD Tivo deal that ended April 30th. AWESOME!
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