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Old 06-11-2011, 06:57 PM   #1
Rebate_King
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TiVo announces two new boxes. Premiere Q (4 tuner box) and the Premiere Preview

http://www.tmcnet.com/usubmit/2011/06/11/5567557.htm

(Multichannel News Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) TiVo working overtime to win business from cable operators will offer MSOs two new set-top options and has enhanced its iPad app to integrate with cable video services.

TiVo Premiere Q is the company's first quad-tuner gateway set-top box, a higher-end option than its flagship Premiere dual-tuner digital video recorder. In addition, TiVo is rolling out Preview, its first non-DVR HD set-top box.

RCN will be the first U.S. cable operator to offer subscribers the Premiere Q and Preview, in addition to its current TiVo Premiere offering, later this year. Sud-denlink Communications also expects to offer the new boxes at some point.

“TiVo's solution for cable has stood apart in delivering the only offering that fully integrates the operator's linear and VOD content with broadband content and application choices,” David Sandford, vice president and general manager of TiVo's service provider business, said in a statement.



Premiere Q and Preview will provide more flexibility to offer multiroom DVR services to customers, according to TiVo.

In addition being able to handle up to four simultaneous recordings, Premiere Q supports up to three HD streams over a Multimedia over Coax Alliance (MoCA) or Ethernet home network. The Preview box also includes integrated MoCA and Ethernet for home networking.

Meanwhile, the newversion of TiVo's companion iPad application automatically adds an operator'svideo-on-demand titles into the search and browse features within the app. It also detects and integrates an operator's branding, linear programming lineup and VOD catalog when connected to a TiVo box provided by the operator.

Users can “flick” the content they find on the TiVo iPad app and it begins playing on TV.

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Old 06-11-2011, 07:27 PM   #2
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Did I read the article wrong, or are these boxes for cable providers only?
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Old 06-11-2011, 08:17 PM   #3
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Did I read the article wrong, or are these boxes for cable providers only?
You read it correct. Not surprising since they already offer a three tuner box with Virgin in the UK.

Some time back, folks noticed testing with a unknown TiVo box (I think the guy who hosts HME Reversi noted it). The original speculation was that it was testing for the Insignia-branded TV (Best Buy) with TiVo interface (announced a while ago). Apparently there are now two non-DVR TiVos now in development.

Looks like retail is REALLY taking a back seat to MSO development.
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Old 06-11-2011, 08:32 PM   #4
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If Comcast offered a Q, I'd be all over that.
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Old 06-11-2011, 08:55 PM   #5
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The box was originally designed for cable companies RCN and Sudden Link. From the previous announcement they said they might still offer it via retail but possibly without moca.

From the original announcement, http://www.lightreading.com/document...&site=lr_cable

Quote:
TiVo Inc. (Nasdaq: TIVO) has confirmed it's developing a new client box for a whole-home DVR for MSOs, with Multimedia over Coax Alliance (MoCA) being one of the high-speed home networking technologies it's considering.

TiVo senior VP of corporate development and strategy Naveen Chopra tells Light Reading Cable that his company will be developing both the software and the hardware for a whole-home product that would feed off an MSO-customized version of TiVo's Premiere box. TiVo has similar projects overseas, but most of them call for TiVo's software to be ported to third-party boxes. (See TiVo Hopes to Reign in Spain and TiVo Coming to Virgin's Non-DVRs, Too.)

"We're developing a client box" for MSOs, Chopra says, but he isn't elaborating on specifics, such as how many TVs and other devices would be supported by the new multi-room product.

However, TiVo wants to ensure that the experience on the client boxes mirrors what customers can do on the Premiere DVR. "That's a key design principle for us," Chopra says.

TiVo is considering a "couple of choices" when it comes to the home networking technology for the multi-room DVR. "We think MoCA will be a very popular answer for many operators," Chopra says, noting that it would be "easy" to modify the Premiere box for MoCA. That would obviously represent growth potential for Entropic Communications Inc. (Nasdaq: ENTR) and Broadcom Corp. (Nasdaq: BRCM), still the only companies that make MoCA chips. (See MoCA Is Go for 2.0.)

TiVo hasn't announced plans to make a similar whole-home client to support its retail DVR products, though Chopra acknowledges it would be a "logical" thing to do. Such a product would likely involve wireless home networking.
Also one sentence in the OP's link jumped out at me.

Quote:
In addition being able to handle up to four simultaneous recordings, Premiere Q supports up to three HD streams over a Multimedia over Coax Alliance (MoCA) or Ethernet home network. The Preview box also includes integrated MoCA and Ethernet for home networking.
It looks like the Tivo will support streaming with a max of three streams on the Q. This leads me to believe we will see support for one stream on the Premiere assuming they leave one tuner for local viewing.
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Old 06-11-2011, 11:27 PM   #6
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With the last update the Premiere can handle more than with the previous software. 2 MRV streams( 1 incoming and 1 outgoing), 2 recordings, one VOD download and viewing one previously recorded show.

Although when I tested this, the Amazon download did slow to a crawl of only 3 or 4 mb/s instead of the normal 30 to 35 mb/s download speed from Amazon.
But still you could do six things which was not possible before.
Before it was only four. Only one MRV stream and the VOD download had to wait until the MRV transfer was finished.
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Old 06-11-2011, 11:48 PM   #7
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I am guessing this means streaming may take priority or use less resources since technically this would be three outgoing. Of course the premiere q may have a newer beefier chip. Unless of course the q blocks other services or queues them at least while the streaming is occurring.
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Old 06-12-2011, 01:39 AM   #8
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Looks like retail is REALLY taking a back seat to MSO development.
I would guess that they'll have a retail version out soon. They'll need someone to beta test it.
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Old 06-12-2011, 07:28 AM   #9
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I would guess that they'll have a retail version out soon. They'll need someone to beta test it.
I wonder if the current Premier would be replaced and would we see a version of the Preview at retail? There is only so much space the TiVo will get at retail today.
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Old 06-12-2011, 08:02 AM   #10
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I wonder if the current Premier would be replaced and would we see a version of the Preview at retail? There is only so much space the TiVo will get at retail today.
IF they take the Q into retail it'd be online only and perhaps through Magnolia is my guess... For the Preview, I'm not sure - there could be more options IF they can simply and effectively explain it as a non-DVR cable box that also handles Premiere streaming.

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Old 06-12-2011, 08:18 AM   #11
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If it's OTA, it's not interesting to me...or the retail chain
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Old 06-12-2011, 09:39 AM   #12
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I wonder if they will stick with the 1tb drive from the xl or if they will be smart and go with the 2tb drive.

Depending on how well the xl sells or doesn't sell, I could even see them dumping the xl and only offering the regular premiere and the q.
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Old 06-12-2011, 11:21 AM   #13
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Interesting...

While it's tempting to think that this explains where Tivo's engineers, time and focus have been, I'm afraid that's wishful thinking.

I fully expect the Q to be just a Premiere XL with 4 tuners instead of 2. Recall that the box is perfectly capable and has everything it needs to handle more than 2 tuners - Tivo just didn't insert them.

It's kind of sounding like the Preview is interesting but the big x-factor is the Tivo fee. If they're still charging 19.99/14.99 a month for it, I can see it flopping in a BIG way. This is especially the case because you're still going to need a Cablecard in each one, so that added expense and hassle may make the Preview more equivalent to the Premiere in the minds of many customers. I think the only way they address this is by making the Preview significantly cheaper. If it's $75 up front + $15/10 a month, well heck, you might as well just get a Premiere for 25 bucks up front and an extra 5 bucks a month! To really differentiate it, the pricing differential will have to be non-trivial.

Of course, all of this assumes Tivo has any plans at all to sell these to us - it's quite possible that this is the first stage of Tivo's overt MSOs-Only strategy, which has mostly been hinted at till now. Then again, Tivo may see an opportunity to set pricing out of this world for online-only Q purchases - after all, the only people who would buy one (other than RCN subs) would be diehard fanatics, the folks who paid $1000+ for Series 3's the first day, and so on. Plus, as nrc mentioned, Tivo needs someone to beta test... wait a second, why are we PAYING Tivo to beta test? One more advantage of lifetime!
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Old 06-12-2011, 11:29 AM   #14
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Well my first cable card is free. With 4 tuners I'd wager many people would go the whole home DVR route like Directv is offering. Thats $10 +7 right off the bat and another $6 which can be credited and a two year contract. Tivo's price isn't that far off with the subsidized hardware and drops after the first year. What this could do is get people to get rid of some extra boxes. Sure some people need 8+ tuners but I'd wager most do not.

Also this PROBABLY means Tivo isn't abandoning premiere software. Which means those of us that don't give a crap about the extra two tuners can skip out on the upgrade yet see hopefully tangible improvement to the UI.

We shall see. This is a critical time for Tivo. If they lag too far behind now they will get bought out or go into bankruptcy / get bought out. They have about 3-5 years to make it happen and not become any more irrelevant than they already have. The direct deals with DirecTV and Cable Co's are their only hope as retail is dying for them.

The Directv tivo will be out this year. Probably next for the start of the cable Co roll outs. Adding VOD to the Premiere will also help. So there are a few big things coming. Hopefully they get the UI speed up and finish the HD UI for the other menus as well.
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Old 06-12-2011, 11:29 AM   #15
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Interesting...

While it's tempting to think that this explains where Tivo's engineers, time and focus have been, I'm afraid that's wishful thinking.

I fully expect the Q to be just a Premiere XL with 4 tuners instead of 2. Recall that the box is perfectly capable and has everything it needs to handle more than 2 tuners - Tivo just didn't insert them.
Dont forget they have also been working on streaming, the virgin TiVo, the RCN software, the comcast software, hulu, and the 4 tuner would still require testing though some would have been done software wise for the virgin TiVo. Of course the virgin TiVo is different hardware.

I can see TiVo sticking with the 1tb drive, but hopefully they won't or at least will offer a 2tb drive option like a Q XL. My Premiere XLs constantly have full drives, and I cant imagine if they had two more tuner in them.
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Old 06-12-2011, 12:09 PM   #16
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Dont forget they have also been working on...
Oh, I know, and I agree - my point was just that I doubt Tivo is going to do much of anything software-wise other than the minimum required to get all 4 tuners working. Bare-bones functionality and then stop development seems to be the rule at Tivo - this is probably due to having few engineers and spreading them thin over so many projects, including those you mention.

It is tempting to think "well maybe they'll do something to fix the Premiere now" since they're releasing this. If anything, the complete OPPOSITE is true historically. That said, if they're still calling it a Premiere, I'm hopeful that at least some of the software will be the same. Perhaps charging a potentially super-premium price for the Q would give them an incentive to fix stuff for the Q, which might trickle down to the current Premiere/Premier XL. I think that's the best we can hope for.


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The Directv tivo will be out this year.
LOLOLOLOL - I think any prognostication on a DirecTivo release date is wishful thinking, for a variety of reasons. DirecTivo isn't in Duke Nukem Forever vaporware territory, but it's getting there.
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Old 06-12-2011, 12:35 PM   #17
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this is probably due to having few engineers and spreading them thin over so many projects, including those you mention.
Good insight here. Must be hard to hire top engineering talent when you have companies like Apple, HP, Intel etc thriving and clamoring for talent. How does Tivo retain and / or lure new talent to support existing and future projects?
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Old 06-12-2011, 03:36 PM   #18
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TiVo OTA performance devolves over time

Let me see if I have this straight:

The Series 3 TiVo has two tuners and good over the air reception in 2006.
The TiVo Premiere has two tuners and mediocre over the air reception in 2010.
The Tivo Premiere Q has four tuners but no over the air reception in 2011.

How friggin' tough is it to include an ATSC tuner with decent performance in a device that already has a QAM tuner, power supply, hard drive, case, etc.? It doesn't seem like the marginal cost nor the engineering expertise should be all that demanding.

WTF?!
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Old 06-12-2011, 03:53 PM   #19
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Let me see if I have this straight:

The Series 3 TiVo has two tuners and good over the air reception in 2006.
The TiVo Premiere has two tuners and mediocre over the air reception in 2010.
The Tivo Premiere Q has four tuners but no over the air reception in 2011.

How friggin' tough is it to include an ATSC tuner with decent performance in a device that already has a QAM tuner, power supply, hard drive, case, etc.? It doesn't seem like the marginal cost nor the engineering expertise should be all that demanding.

WTF?!
We don't know. I am guessing.

TiVo uses a 2 chip design. Previously the chips they could choose from were
1 OTA/1 qam tuner
2 qam tuners
2 OTA tuners

As a result they could do any combo but to get 4 tuners and stick to the two chip design they would have to go with 2 of the 2 qam tuner chips. Now like I said there could be new tuner chips out and bkdtv would probably know but he seems to be MIA.

If someone now makes a single chip with 2 qam tuners and 2 OTA tuners they could offer a box with 4 tuners for either qam or OTA.
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Old 06-12-2011, 04:01 PM   #20
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hopefully the iPad VOD updates are for comast.....from the press release, it seems like it may only be for those cable providers that offer tivos??
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Old 06-12-2011, 04:08 PM   #21
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hopefully the iPad VOD updates are for comast.....from the press release, it seems like it may only be for those cable providers that offer tivos??
I would say it is probably for RCN for now. Currently RCN is redesigning their vod interface and also they don't support the iPad app yet.
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Old 06-12-2011, 04:10 PM   #22
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Hopefully it has 4 cable tuners AND 4 OTA tuners, if it ever comes to retail. I HIGHLY doubt Time Warner is EVER going to let Tivo develop their DVRs.
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Old 06-12-2011, 04:25 PM   #23
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A four-tuner box with extenders could potentially drop the cost for multi-room by hundreds. Currently, a four-tuner solution is 2 Premiere's (2x$99) and two Lifetime's (2x$499) or $1200 (maybe $1000 if there are $399 lifetimes). And you have to manually manage the two separate boxes. This new system might be $199 for the box, $99 for an extender, and $499 for lifetime, a $700 total, a $400 savings.

Would Tivo give up that much revenue? Perhaps the right interpretation is that, if they sell standalone systems, the new box will by at least $299 and extenders will be at least $199.

I want to upgrade from my two TivoHDs this Fall. I want a four-tuner system, and am investigating HTPCs. Tivo creating a quad-tuner box with extenders could completely change my equation and keep me in the "family".

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Old 06-12-2011, 04:28 PM   #24
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The Premier Preview sounds like a complete waste of hardware. Judging from the original Premier, Tivo is utterly incompetent at branching out into things other than being a DVR. A box that can only run the absolute worst bits of Tivo software sounds like a real dog of a product. Of course, even at that, it might still be better than the cable boxes currently available.

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Old 06-12-2011, 05:29 PM   #25
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Let me see if I have this straight:
The Tivo Premiere Q has four tuners but no over the air reception in 2011.
WTF?!
Why you would include OTA tuners in a MSO / Cable only box? I would expect a retail variant has the OTAs - but not the MSO version. Its pretty rare exception nowadays to need OTA reception if you have local Cable (i.e. most cable COs carry the HD versions of the network locals.)

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Old 06-12-2011, 05:51 PM   #26
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How friggin' tough is it to include an ATSC tuner with decent performance in a device that already has a QAM tuner, power supply, hard drive, case, etc.? It doesn't seem like the marginal cost nor the engineering expertise should be all that demanding.

WTF?!
Does such a device even exist? The few 4+ tuner devices I've seen for HTPCs are cable only also.
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Old 06-12-2011, 06:28 PM   #27
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How many tuners would an "M" card feed? There is only space for one card on the Premier?

Also, the TiVo OTA performance is not as good as on my TV.
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Old 06-12-2011, 06:34 PM   #28
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How many tuners would an "M" card feed? There is only space for one card on the Premier?
The M cards support up to 6 streams, but Tuning Adapters which are required by some markets are only going to soon be required to support 4 streams.
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Old 06-12-2011, 10:45 PM   #29
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How friggin' tough is it to include an ATSC tuner with decent performance in a device that already has a QAM tuner, power supply, hard drive, case, etc.? It doesn't seem like the marginal cost nor the engineering expertise should be all that demanding.

WTF?!
It's a cable company product. How many cable boxes have ATSC tuners?
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Old 06-13-2011, 12:19 AM   #30
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The Tivo Premiere Q has four tuners but no over the air reception in 2011.
So really this is just a regular Premiere with the 2 OTA tuners replaced by 2 additional QAM tuners. I wonder what took them so long? Perhaps they've had this ready since the release of the Premiere and were just waiting on the mandate that forces Cable Companies to support at least 4 tuners on a single M-Card.

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DirecTivo isn't in Duke Nukem Forever vaporware territory, but it's getting there.
It only took 14 years, but DNF will be available this Tuesday...

http://www.amazon.com/Duke-Nukem-For.../dp/B002I0JAJ2

It's only been like 2-3 years since the new DirecTiVo was announced, so they've got plenty of time to catch up.

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