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Old 03-08-2010, 09:37 PM   #1
johnny99
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what happens to my lifetime subscription if Tivo goes bankrupt?

Tivo reported their quarterly earnings today and they are having trouble controlling costs while customer cancellations are increasing and new subscriptions are decreasing. Meanwhile, there are reports today that Google is developing some kind of set-top cable box that provides TV search and schedule information for free (ad-supported).

If Tivo declares bankruptcy, what happens to existing "lifetime" subscriptions?
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Old 03-08-2010, 09:48 PM   #2
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What do you think would happen to it?

Just as with any company offering a lifetime warranty and the company goes under......no company means no lifetime warranty. So if Tivo went under than your lifetime subscription would be lost. You really couldn't figure this out on your own?
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Old 03-08-2010, 09:49 PM   #3
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Tivo reported their quarterly earnings today and they are having trouble controlling costs while customer cancellations are increasing and new subscriptions are decreasing. Meanwhile, there are reports today that Google is developing some kind of set-top cable box that provides TV search and schedule information for free (ad-supported).

If Tivo declares bankruptcy, what happens to existing "lifetime" subscriptions?
did you hear the parts of the conference call where they said they have tons of cash in the bank? and that how they had their second annual profit before ebitda?

they aren't going bankrupt anytime soon.

that said if they go bankrupt and no one buys them up than your box is potentially a door stop.

likely someone will buy them up though if for nothing else but to get their interlectual property. And not sure anyone buying them would want their name associated with pissing off a million or two 'former tivo' customers by shutting everything down.

But I'll really let the people who know finance pipe in on the liklihood of bankruptcy.
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Old 03-08-2010, 09:50 PM   #4
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Tivo is unlikely to go broke anytime soon. They have cash coming in from the Dish lawsuit and that victory will only lead to cash coming from other providers. As for what would happen, I am sure some company would buy the remains from Tivo. It would be up to them what they decide to do, as they would not be required to honor your current lifetime. I'm sure they would probably give some kind of deal, but there is no requirement.
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Old 03-08-2010, 09:53 PM   #5
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They would just get bought out and continue on from there

don't worry about it
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Old 03-08-2010, 09:56 PM   #6
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Where did you find this? I just did a Google search and there were no hits.

Quote:
Meanwhile, there are reports today that Google is developing some kind of set-top cable box that provides TV search and schedule information for free (ad-supported).

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Old 03-08-2010, 09:58 PM   #7
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Somebody would undoubtedly take over the subs, as they did when Replay went bankrupt. Servicing the accounts is highly profitable (because of the monthly subs).

Bankruptcy is not a danger at all for TiVo for many years, though. They have hundreds of millions of dollars in cash, no debt, and hundreds of millions of dollars due them from the echostar lawsuit. They are losing money now only because they have massively increased research and development because of all the new models (as many as 5 are expected in the next year or so, mostly specialized like the DirecTiVo) and overseas expansion.
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Old 03-08-2010, 09:59 PM   #8
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you can listen to the call here:

http://investor.tivo.com/phoenix.zht...ventID=2739755

press release is here:

http://investor.tivo.com/phoenix.zht...157&highlight=

one interesting postive the analysts asked about was the ARPU apparently made a significant uptick. Tivo wouldn't explain why (seemed afriad to discuss any contract details and then said "we dont want to give details of what our partners are doing")- but when pressed if it was a blip or a new trend they said it should be a new trend.
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Old 03-08-2010, 10:37 PM   #9
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Where did you find this? I just did a Google search and there were no hits.
Maybe this?
http://www.engadget.com/2010/03/08/g...d-based-set-t/
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Old 03-08-2010, 10:54 PM   #10
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What do you think would happen to it?

Just as with any company offering a lifetime warranty and the company goes under......no company means no lifetime warranty. So if Tivo went under than your lifetime subscription would be lost. You really couldn't figure this out on your own?
he asked about the subscription, not the warranty - could you not figure that out.

as others have pointed out -, even replay boxes still have service after all this time. No need to worry about service on the TiVo.
Then the fact TiVo is sitting on a pile of cash and has little debt will let them weather these lean times easily.
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Old 03-08-2010, 11:22 PM   #11
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I don't think Google is getting into the STB market anytime soon, but who knows?
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Old 03-09-2010, 02:13 AM   #12
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he asked about the subscription, not the warranty - could you not figure that out.
Yes I knew what he was talking about. Try reading what I wrote again, before throwing the hammer at me.

But I was making a point about any company that goes out of business and sold anything claiming to be "lifetime". So obviously "lifetime", whether it be a subscription or warranty, is only in place if the company is still in business.....or if someone else takes over their assests.
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Old 03-09-2010, 07:52 AM   #13
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Yes I knew what he was talking about. Try reading what I wrote again, before throwing the hammer at me.
Oh Ok you just wanted deliberately to talk about something different and be so literal as to give the OP an answer that in reality would not happen. Ok then, have fun with that.
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Old 03-09-2010, 07:56 AM   #14
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Remember ReplayTV? I got a lifetime subscription about 10 years ago. The company has been turned over so many times it is virtually gone. BUT, I'm still getting my ReplayTV guide just like 10 years ago.
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Old 03-09-2010, 11:43 AM   #15
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did you hear the parts of the conference call where they said they have tons of cash in the bank? and that how they had their second annual profit before ebitda?

they aren't going bankrupt anytime soon.

that said if they go bankrupt and no one buys them up than your box is potentially a door stop.

likely someone will buy them up though if for nothing else but to get their interlectual property. And not sure anyone buying them would want their name associated with pissing off a million or two 'former tivo' customers by shutting everything down.

But I'll really let the people who know finance pipe in on the liklihood of bankruptcy.
Tivo brand is recognizable, they just need some fresh ideas to move forward so buyout would probably best thing that could happen to Tivo.
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Old 03-09-2010, 01:46 PM   #16
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IIRC Tivo promised when they first started selling boxes that if they ever went under they would put the necessary codes in the public domain so any interested parties could provide an alternative source of guide data.

Also before Tivo was officially available in various foreign countries hobyists found a way to provide local guide data.
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Old 03-09-2010, 02:07 PM   #17
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IIRC Tivo promised when they first started selling boxes that if they ever went under they would put the necessary codes in the public domain so any interested parties could provide an alternative source of guide data.
It was not an official promise, just an employee (I believe Richard "Bullwinkle"?) stating that they would try and make sure customers were covered in case of bankruptcy, including going to public domain. It won't arise - now the current customers and contracts are a valuable asset that companies would jump to service (that wasn't necessarily true in the very beginning.)
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Old 03-09-2010, 03:32 PM   #18
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If the lifetime subscription is in jeopardy, then your Tivo box isn't likely to work so well anyway (no software, no programming guide, etc.). It's the end of the world as we know it--I'm not worrying just about the lifetime I paid for but the Tivo boxes I love.
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Old 03-09-2010, 11:17 PM   #19
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They would just get bought out and continue on from there

don't worry about it
Precisely.

Moxi is now owned by Arris, and SA is now owned by Cisco. DVR companies are apparently worth buying to somebody.
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Old 03-10-2010, 12:00 AM   #20
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Tivo reported their quarterly earnings today and they are having trouble controlling costs while customer cancellations are increasing and new subscriptions are decreasing. Meanwhile, there are reports today that Google is developing some kind of set-top cable box that provides TV search and schedule information for free (ad-supported).

If Tivo declares bankruptcy, what happens to existing "lifetime" subscriptions?
Anyone have a record of how many times a year this question is asked and answered?

As for Tivo going bankrupt - anything is possible, but they have $254 Million in the bank, no dept and Echostar owes them another $300 million plus additional damages from June 2009 forward.

As for Google getting into the set top business, they'll have similar problems to what Tivo has (primarily CableCARD and getting people to think beyond whatever the cable company gives them) UNLESS they really make it worthwhile for the MSOs to use a potential Google box. Most people these days aren't going to buy a cablebox that isn't also a DVR and Tivo has quite a few DVR-related patents, not just the Time Warp patent that's at the heard of the Echostar case, including one just issued related to the concept of season passes.

The other thing that was lost on the OP is that the rate of losses, especially in the MSO (now primarily DirecTV) is reversing and average revenue per MSO customer is increasing (about 15-20%) and the CEO said "this is not related to a one time event.

No offense to the OP, but this is just another "Tivo deathwatch" post that we've have pretty constantly for the last 10-12 years. IMO, the possibility that Tivo will go bankrupt is the lowest it's been in years.
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Old 03-10-2010, 07:45 PM   #21
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Oh Ok you just wanted deliberately to talk about something different and be so literal as to give the OP an answer that in reality would not happen. Ok then, have fun with that.
What is your issue with me? I was making a point that "lifetime" doesn't mean lifetime, if the company goes out of business, that's all!
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Old 03-10-2010, 08:25 PM   #22
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What is your issue with me? I was making a point that "lifetime" doesn't mean lifetime, if the company goes out of business, that's all!
and that was incorrect. The rest was just me replying in kind to your sarcasm you showed the poster. It seems you can be sarcastic but others should treat you with utmost respect. Ok.
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Old 03-10-2010, 11:28 PM   #23
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This was asked back in the day and a TiVo employee (Richard B I think) {His last name is like the moose on Rocky the flying Squirrel but I cannot spell it right now} said that, "were TiVo to go out of business an unlock code would be released that would, at least. allow TiVos to do manual recordings.

Of course TiVos back then were much simpler and things like cable cards, MRV, and other advanced things did not exist, but I would hope that all TiVos would be able to perform at some level should the worst happen.

But, as others have said, TiVo is not in current real danger of going out of business rather the only real danger is some sort of buyout which should not effect subscription models in any way but pricing and existing contracts should continue unchanged.
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Old 03-11-2010, 03:08 PM   #24
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Goggle will take over the world one day. Anything they do, they win.
<off-topic>
That doesn't seem to be the case for Wave or Buzz (from what I've been seeing)
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Old 03-11-2010, 03:45 PM   #25
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but they have $254 Million in the bank
.
hmmm, me too... small world
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Old 05-14-2012, 05:19 PM   #26
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Tivo reported their quarterly earnings today and they are having trouble controlling costs while customer cancellations are increasing and new subscriptions are decreasing. Meanwhile, there are reports today that Google is developing some kind of set-top cable box that provides TV search and schedule information for free (ad-supported).

If Tivo declares bankruptcy, what happens to existing "lifetime" subscriptions?
GOOD QUESTION..LIKE I GOT MY MONEY REFUND $149.00 PLUS ANY MOVIES FREE NO CHARGE SEPT TO NOV 30, 2011 FROM SEZMI INC. SHUT DOWN ON SEPT 24TH,..THEY SEND MONEY REFUND TO SUBCRIBERS CUSTOMER'S SEZMI DVR 1TB DEVICE ONLY AND ANY MOVIES FREE UNTIL NOV 30 EXPIRED... NOT NEW CUSTOMER JOIN...ON SEPT 24,2011 AFTER..
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Old 05-14-2012, 05:36 PM   #27
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Thank you for the seizure.
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Old 05-14-2012, 08:18 PM   #28
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I don't think Google is getting into the STB market anytime soon, but who knows?
Google in taks with an investment firm on finding someone who take Moto STB division. Cissco is also trying to unload the SA STB division.

Tivo has stated that in the event that would cause them to go under an update would be sent that would open the boxes. Hacker would end proving support if no one took Tivo over. But, this all un-likely to happen with VM in the UK and RCN, and other cable provider using TiVo. Comcast may come around and offer TiVo if the VOD deal sell more Tivo’s.
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Old 05-14-2012, 08:38 PM   #29
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Before a company goes under, it is sold to someone else. When AT&T offered to buy T-Mobile, a lof customers claimed foul. They didn't want to lose the plans they paid for (or plans they were grandfathered into) by joining AT&T. AT&T assured the customers that they would continue having the plans they currently were subscribed to.

I imagine that if TiVo ever "goes under" and is sold to the highest bidder, customers will retain the services they had.
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Old 05-14-2012, 09:02 PM   #30
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...
Tivo has stated that in the event that would cause them to go under an update would be sent that would open the boxes. ....

i doubt there's anyway that tivo stops operating anytime in the next several years. Just not going to happen.

that said- is the above accurate? I dont know that TiVo, the company, ever said that.

Several years ago employees of TiVo did indirectly let it be known they would unleash a back door.

But that was a a few platforms ago- who knows if such an easy backdoor exists or not anymore.

More importantly- I'm not even sure at this point that anyone could unlock anything without fear of getting sued or prosecuted. Tivo would have to completely go out of business with zero hope of providing guide data before anyone could unlock anything- but at that point I'm not sure there would be anyone left with the keys. If there's any hope of a buyer coming along then anyone unlocking anything would potentially scutttle a deal since all the subs wouldn't have to spend anything for guide data anymore and could just get it for free someplace. Some cheese head lawyer would probably through around the DMCA too in a suit.
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