trying to help my mother decide on Tivo

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by javabird, Sep 21, 2007.

  1. javabird

    javabird Well-Known Member

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    I think my elderly mom would enjoy having a Tivo, since she has trouble figuring out how to use her VCR. She's not real technical, although she does use the internet and AIM. She has an analog TV and analog cable.

    I was thinking the single tuner S2 Tivo that's free after rebate right now would be a good choice for her, since she's pretty frugal about money, and isn't a heavy TV watcher. But I wonder if having only one tuner would be confusing, if she wanted to watch TV live while the Tivo was recording.

    Can anyone else who has used a single tuner give advice, either pro or con? Have you known people who aren't technical who like the single tuner?
     
  2. 20TIL6

    20TIL6 BaDoop BaDoop BaDoop

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    I think since she's just using analog, she could pobably do the following:

    Split the incoming cable and connect one end to the ST TiVo, the other end to the coax input on the TV. I'm assuming her TV has video inputs for other devices, so connect the TiVo to a set of those inputs.

    Then, normally she would just watch TV on the TiVo input. She could watch live TV, watch something recorded, or watch something live as that same program is being recorded. If she wanted to watch something live, while something else is recording, switch the TV over to the coax input and watch the live program over there.

    I think this would work.
     
  3. dbtom

    dbtom Member

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    You should spend a little money and get the dual tuner. I set Tivo up for my parents and the concept of not being able to record something and watch TV at the same time (like a VCR) was very confusing. They much prefer the dual-tuner setup.

    You could set it up so that you switch inputs as was suggested. In my opinion, this is too confusing to operate for older folks. My guess is that your mother would spend most of her time on the live TV input if you set it up that way.
     
  4. 20TIL6

    20TIL6 BaDoop BaDoop BaDoop

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    Yeah, I agree with that. I wonder if she would have to juggle remotes (on the TiVo input, use the TiVo remote, on the TV input, use the TV remote). I think the TiVo remotes have a little switch to make it function as the TV remote, but the whole idea is to make it easier for your Mom.

    Dual tuner would do that, and she'd really enjoy TiVo which is what you are wanting.
     
  5. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    Buy her the dual tuner and tell her it was free and then she can pick up the subscription part of the deal.

    switching between two inputs is THE most confusing thing to non technical people
     
  6. dianebrat

    dianebrat wait.. I did what? TCF Club

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    Also don't discount the "it's different I don't like it" aspect.

    I went through that with my mom, she dug in her heels and decided she'd never like the Tivo I gave her 3 years ago. She's a smart woman, and always been very technically savvy, to this day she still runs a website that was created extensively in Front Page, but the Tivo pushed all the wrong buttons for her.

    We had issues with suggestions "I want them on, no off, no on, no off" for several months.
    Then we had the issue of her saying she wanted to make a season pass "that gets all the episodes!" we talked about first run vs repeats, and she said "all.. every one" and we set it up, then that was flipped to "why do I have 9 million episodes of Stargate SG1?"

    Dual tuner would have made her head explode, so don't go overboard.. keep it simple.

    That resulted in the final discussion we had on the Tivo before she gave up and gave it back to me, it consisted of the following exchange:
    " Well yes, I want it to always record every episode of Stargate, but not the ones I've already seen..."

    [head slams on wall]

    true story.. I love her dearly.. but that series of events was tough.. she seemed like *exactly* the right kind of person for a Tivo.

    Diane
     
  7. javabird

    javabird Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for your comments. Your feedback kind of confirms what I was worrying about. She does have a hard time switching between her DVD player and VCR, in fact she rarely uses her DVD player, and using two remotes is really confusing for her. I think you are right that the DT would be easier for her to use... then she could just have one remote and not worry about switching inputs. I was trying to save money since I currently can't afford to buy it for her and the rebate seems like such a good deal. But maybe it would be worth it to wait for a sale on the DT and get something she would be happier with.
     
  8. javabird

    javabird Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I feel for what you went through. I was thinking I would just install the Tivo and then program the season passes and wishlists for her. I also get called on to help her with Tech support on her PC, and sometimes I have to remind myself to *be patient, be paitent*...
     
  9. MsRoboto

    MsRoboto Member

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    You might want to consider a Harmony type remote too. This gives you a single button to press to change the activity to watch tv, watch dvd. It is non-techy proof and probably mother proof too.

    I live with a non-tech person who literally almost had a meltdown trying to use the old remotes. She could not understand multi-function remotes and how to use them. Now all I have to say it press the green button so easy.

    There other remotes that will do this type of thing but this is the one I use.
     
  10. javabird

    javabird Well-Known Member

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    If I were to come up with the money to buy her a DT Tivo as a gift (an early Xmas present), would I still qualify for a rebate? Since I'm already a Tivo subscriber for myself, would it disqualify me from getting the rebate? How does that work?
     
  11. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    the rebate is for a TiVo that is having new service activated. Your account status or other TiVo DVRs will have no bearing on it
     
  12. ebf

    ebf New Member

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    I got my mom an 80 hour single tuner TiVo last summer. It took a few days (weeks?), but once her favorite shows started to fill the Now Playing list she really started to enjoy it! Don't show her everything at once-- I showed my mom things like Search by Tile, Wish Lists, page-at-a-time scrolling and the 8-second rewind after she'd gotten the hang of the basics of watching and recording shows (using the Guide).

    I am sure your mom will love her TiVo once you program all of her Season Passes. :up:
     
  13. richsadams

    richsadams Well-Known Member

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    Ha! What a great story! Thanks for sharing that Diane...good stuff. I could see all of that happening and probably some experiences you've left out no doubt. That would be a great beginning of a "Tell Us Your TiVo Horror Stories" thread! No disrespect to your mom...I'm sure she's a saint...but how classic.

    I have no idea what to tell the OP other than KISS, but had to give you :up: :up: on your post. :D
     
  14. megory

    megory Advanced TiVoOligan

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    I tried to give a TiVo and service to a very clever uncle, who works with all sorts of speakers and tuners etc., and who is very creative as well as brilliant -- but he couldn't wrap his head around it and begged me to give it to someone else, insisting he didn't want it! (A man who knows his mind!)

    Those features that WE love in TiVo can really confuse many people or complicate their lives in ways that we don't realize or understand. We just want to share our joy!

    Maybe the best thing is to get a cable DVR consistent with KISS? She'll have dual tuners easily as well as, sometimes, 2 hours of cache. And, for the price of a TiVo and TiVo service and contract, you could pay for her to have the digital cable.

    The SA8300s are not as complex as TiVos, and don't have all the searchability features etc. But they ARE made for people who are not technologically savvy.

    And if she ultimately does NOT want to use it, you've lost nothing!
     
  15. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    leaving aside people who do not get a DVR or multiple inputs on the TV etc, which is understandable

    can you please tell us how a TiVo is more complex than a SA8300 or any other cable company DVR for that matter?
     
  16. javabird

    javabird Well-Known Member

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    If she gets the single tuner Tivo, will it become obsolete in a year after the analog-to-digital conversion? Or will it still work since she has analog cable (and will that still work or will she need a converter box)?
     
  17. dianebrat

    dianebrat wait.. I did what? TCF Club

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    Not if she uses cable, it will still be able to use a cable box for tuning channels above 99. The 2009 (now 2012) date is for analog over the air transmissions changes, not cable.

    Diane
     
  18. Puppy76

    Puppy76 Well-Known Member

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    I'm completely confused about how Tivo could confuse anyone. Some of these stories...yikes!

    And I mean how can you not understand the difference between repeats and first run shows? :-/
     
  19. javabird

    javabird Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, everyone, for your advice! I decided to order one of the refurb DT's that's on web special right now. The suggestion to only show her a few things at a time is good advice. I'm planning on programming all her shows for her at first, so she will only have to switch between the "Now Playing" and "Watch Live TV."
     
  20. richsadams

    richsadams Well-Known Member

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    That ought to make her smile. :up:
     

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