Tivo's competitors

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by GeorgeHReme, Aug 19, 2007.

  1. GeorgeHReme

    GeorgeHReme Level 2 Tivo Fairy

    Feb 25, 2007


    Hello fellow TiVonites (or tivodites, tivophiles? ..Tivocollective? Maybe TiVopods? Tivobots? You choose). I was wondering if anyone has compiled a list of TiVo's competitors. Besides the cable companies, that is to say, I seem to recall a few other third party folks trying to reinvent the DVR idea. Did any of 'em make it? Not that I want to switch, mind you. I just need something to occupy my time before my new box arrives. Thanks--

  2. stevel

    stevel Dumb Blond TCF Club

    Aug 23, 2000
    Nashua, NH
    The only company I know of with plans to sell their own DVR independent of cable/satellite providers is Diego/Moxi (currently available only from a few cable companies.) But the cable and satellite companies are very much competitors for TiVo business. For some years, ReplayTV was in that market but no longer.

    You would do well to look at TiVo's 10K report which lists firms that TiVo thinks are competitors.

    Oh, and we're TiVolutionaries.
  3. dianebrat

    dianebrat wait.. I did what? TCF Club

    Jul 6, 2002
    Sony's now discontinued DHG-HDD500 could have been considered a TivoHD and S3 competitor (it even used cableCARD), but it used the dreadful TVGuide listings service, and as far as I had seen no one had been able to hack it for higher capacity.

    Those two items had me take a pass on it.
  4. bilbo

    bilbo New Member

    Dec 7, 2004
    tivo's competitors include the plain jane vcr.

    and i'm being serious, too. this isn't really meant to be a joke. i know people who still have multiple vcr's.

    personally, i gave up on vcr's about 5 years ago when my last one (a cheap sub-$100 model from wal-mart) broke.
  5. cwerdna

    cwerdna Proud Tivolutionary

    Feb 22, 2001
    SF Bay Area, CA


    I can think of many, some are out of the market though...

    cable co PVR software: iGuide, SARA, MSTV (no longer in the US), Moxi (they said they intend to go into the standalone PVR market), Aptiv (formerly Pioneer) Passport
    DBS services: DirecTV's NDS based HR20 and R15, various Dish PVRs, Dishplayer, Ultimate TV
    For standalones: various DVD recorders, some have TV Guide software while some aren't better than dumb VCRs w/timers, ReplayTV (out of the standalone market)
    PC based solutions: Media Center Editions of Windows, MythTV, SageTV, ReplayTV
  6. GeorgeHReme

    GeorgeHReme Level 2 Tivo Fairy

    Feb 25, 2007
    Ah, yes! Tivolutionaries! I'm sure that name will quell any doubt in those afraid of what users of DVRs have in mind for established consumer institutions (i.e. here are the products you are supposed to like. Look at the handsome, dashing men! And the ladies! They're so thin, so attractive, and they seem to like the razor-blade/whatever. Why don't you? BUY BUY BUY!"

    Speaking of being afraid of change, I know what bilbo is talking about. There must be legions of people out there who religiously use their VCRs for all their recording needs. I know a few relatives among them...don't they know there's been a TIVOLUTION?!

    But, what's this? ReplayTV bit the bullet, aye? And Moxi, that sounds familiar. Hmm...and you're right about the TV Guide crap. I was trying to use that with a DVD/VCR combination a few months ago, and nearly poked my eyes out in disgust (merely a dramatization on my part? YOU try it).

    A series 2 Tivo w/lifetime
  7. classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

    Feb 18, 2004
    Ontario Canada.
    AFAIK, there is no standalone DVR the level of TiVo remaining on the (US) market.

    DVR options boil down to serviceless HDD based DVD recorders, which at most use the TVGOS or similar, provider DVRs, or PC based DVR options.

    Yes, a cablecard Diego box is likely coming, and there are probably a few emerging products or products under development..
  8. dstoffa

    dstoffa Member

    Dec 14, 2005
    New York, NY
    I would say that Tivo is the last buggy-whip maker...

    DNNA (ReplayTV's parent) decided to abandon the stand-alone box when their market research indicated that provider-provided boxes (Cable, sat) would be offered too cheap for RTV to make it in the end. (The masses are asses, and they'll only consider price, not features... Remember, we here aren't average consumers...) DNNA stopped production on their last line of boxes and blew out the remaining inventory maybe a year ago.
  9. GeorgeHReme

    GeorgeHReme Level 2 Tivo Fairy

    Feb 25, 2007
    Dear dstoffa,

    Do you really think TiVo isn't persuasive enough to survive? Sure, this forum is far from representative...but to inspire the kind of loyalty we read of time and time again in posts, surely there must be some glimmer of hope?

    ...wait, no. I forgot that a lot of us don't have anything better to do with our time and that's why we're actually here. Speaking of, where is my #$%@@ TIVO already?! (raising fists to the air) You'll pay UPS, you'll pay! (sobbing) All I want is to see was highly-rendered video of kuala bears! Why must I be tortured like this?!

    Anyway...perhaps the best hope for Tivo is to stop this nonsense of monthly subscriptions. As much as I love the service, I simply couldn't bring myself to purchase a new box 'till I knew I'd never have to spend another dime again (having secured another lifetime subscription). Besides, I don't feel comfortable trying to hawk Tivo to my friends and family when it ends up being just another monthly bill they have to worry about. What kind of Birthday/Christmas gift is that? "Oh, thanks George. $12.99 taken out of my pocket is just what I wanted!" "Sorry, Grandma." *sigh* what to do?
  10. erikg

    erikg Member

    Aug 20, 2007
    What about Windows Media Center? Between Dell, HP, Alienware there are machines out there that record digital content. Additionally there are also linux based solutions such as SageTV, MythTV and even DNNA who dropped their ReplayTV DVR boxes after the lawsuits has their own software solution that only requires your PC and a tv tuner card.
  11. dstoffa

    dstoffa Member

    Dec 14, 2005
    New York, NY
    Well, Tivo sure hopes so... I do not own Tivos. I own four ReplayTVs. When I was looking into getting a DVR 4+ years ago, I polled my friends, who have owned both. I was told, "Tivos are better at getting your shows. ReplayTVs let you do more once you get them. You'll be happy either way." DVArchive, external storage, and LAN streaming out-of-the-box are what made me by two original RTVs. I now have routines to get my shows to my iPod so I can watch TV while I commute. I've since inherited two more RTVs from friends who have moved on to other options (one a Tivo, one a Cable Co DVR).

    When DNNA decided to stop making stand-alone DVR's, I was disappointed. I read the company's financial reports / plans, and they said that the cost of the box, + the subscription could not compete with the service provider provided boxes. Why would someone pay $149 + $299 for a device when I can get one from Time Warner for a small monthly fee?

    Consumers look at low EZ payments, not the bottom line.

    I would like to think that DNNA was correct in their assessment of the market. Cable DVRs are cheaper to the end user, Tivo has scuttled the Lifetime subscription option since they deem it not profitable, and here we are.....

    Unless Tivo can get more people to try it, I think they'll never make it. Unfortunately, the junk that passes as DVR's is too cheap for the masses to invest in.

    As you stated before, "Gee, thanks for buying me this box that sucks $13 per month out of my wallet."

    Why am I here? Slow Monday, and I am curious how the other half lives.....

  12. dstoffa

    dstoffa Member

    Dec 14, 2005
    New York, NY
    The Media PC's are not the soluition.

    The masses want a box that works when they plug it in. They don't want to configure anything. They just want to plug and play. The cable guy comes in and gives you this shiny new box that works. No IR blaster. No hassles. No worries. Standalone units cannot match the simplicity of the Cable Co DVR. And a PC? Forget about it. This is for power-users.

  13. jmoak

    jmoak Beware of Conky!

    Jun 20, 2000
  14. dstoffa

    dstoffa Member

    Dec 14, 2005
    New York, NY
    Have they (Tivo) turned a profit yet? Can they? Will they? That is the question. You can have all the press and presence on the web you want. The presence in the living room is the one that will matter in the end.
  15. bonnie_raitt

    bonnie_raitt Member

    Sep 14, 2001
    Seattle, WA
    I tried to use the Comcast supplied DVR for several months before buying an S3. It had so many problems I couldn't rely on it for my recordings. I finally gave it up.

    I think Tivo may still have a chance. It would be nice if the monthly charge was less
  16. jmoak

    jmoak Beware of Conky!

    Jun 20, 2000
    Don't care about any financials and the only living room presence I care about is my own.
    I guess I touched a nerve, there. Sorry 'bout that. I'll be quiet now.
  17. Justin Thyme

    Justin Thyme Contra sceleris

    Mar 29, 2005
    Huh. If they are making buggy whips, then the cable companies are foolishly pulling out the stops to flood the market with buggy whips too?

    It's a poorly chosen metaphor because it indicates some sort of antiquated status, suggesting that someone else has come out with a car or jetpack to the DVR buggywhip.

    If anything is antiquated, it is the Tivo death watch. Yet some folks cling stubbornly to their whips... Whatever- go ahead. Flail away. You are swinging at air.
  18. dswallow

    dswallow Save the ModeratŠ¾r TCF Club

    Dec 3, 2000
    There's only a few companies not on this list that probably are into something TiVo might consider competitive:

    Adelphia Communications
    Cable Vision Systems
    Charter Communications
    Comcast Cable
    Cox Cable
    Echostar/Dish Network
    D&M Holdings
    Scientific Atlanta
    Time Warner
  19. tenthplanet

    tenthplanet Well-Known Member

    Mar 5, 2004
    PC's are more for people who like pain. Tivo's operate at appliance reliabilty level.
  20. dstoffa

    dstoffa Member

    Dec 14, 2005
    New York, NY
    I do not troll financial pages to see if Tivo is going under... But getting back to my buggy whip metaphor, who else makes a STAND ALONE DVR that can work anywhere?

    I don't think it's going to be easy for Tivo to compete with the rental box market.

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