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Justin Thyme said:
[ ... ] Tivo Corp evolves from being just a one trick pony.
I just want TiVo to use their great name and great web address (tivo.com -- you have to admit, it's pretty good) and create a content destination. "Downloadable content from the TiVo Network." They should start serving cool content that you can download to your PC or Mac and, of course, your TiVo box. They could start small, with quirky or niche content, and work up to the bigger stuff. Free stuff. Support it with ads (embedded in the content and sitting on the web site). Maybe some stuff exclusive to TiVo subs.

They could leverage their search interface, their ad relationships, the capabilities of the broadband-connected boxes, with a brand that everybody knows. On the flip side, the content site would be a great place to advertise the box and the service. That's synergy, baby! ;)

The TV world is changing, and fast. TiVo needs to seize this opportunity to be part of the new paradigm.
 

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Justin Thyme said:
This just in. Possibly Tatung is manufacturing?
No. Universal Scientific Industrial. It says so in the article you quoted (very last line):

TGC introduces TiVo to Taiwan market
Shawn Chen, Taipei; Adam Hwang, DigiTimes.com [Friday 9 December 2005]

TGC (TiVo Greater China) Taiwan, the Taiwan subsidiary of US-based TGC, on December 8 debuted the TiVo 8, a 160GB HDD (hard disk drive) DVR (digital video recorder) model based on TiVo technology, for launch in the Taiwan market at a recommended retail price of NT$12,900 (US$385).
TGC was founded specifically for marketing TiVo DVRs and related services in Taiwan, China, Hong Kong, and Singapore, with TiVo being the largest shareholder, according to TGC Taiwan. Taiwan is the first of the four target markets, mainly due to its high penetration of broadband Internet-access services and cable TV, said general manager Travis Lin for TGC Taiwan.
TiVo 8 will be sold through Tatung, a local manufacturer of consumer electronics and electrical home appliances, Synnex Technology International, a 3C distributor in Taiwan, and PChome Online, an on-line shopping web portal in Taiwan, Lin indicated. Apart from the cost of the TiVo 8, an annual service fee of NT$1,500 (US$45) will be charged beginning from the second year after purchase, Lin noted. TGC Taiwan aims to sell 40,000-50,000 units a year, Lin added.
In addition to marketing, Tatung is interested in ODM/OEM production of TiVo products for TGC, according to company general manager WS Lin. Currently, Taiwan-based Universal Scientific Industrial is the OEM maker of TiVo products for TGC.
http://www.digitimes.com/NewsShow/NewsSearch.asp?DocID=5090678C0243B7F6482570D1004AA21F&query=TIVO
 

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Justin Thyme said:
Yep, down to the screw locations- it pretty much looks like a 540 with the exception of the ethernet port. They must have used the same dies, etc.
Okay, let's have a show of hands: How many of you think the next production run of the U.S. Series 2 boxes will include an ethernet port? Faster processor? More memory?

Somebody needs to pop one of the Taiwanese boxes open, because that's going to tell us where we are going.

  • No network functionality at all that I see, besides guide. No MRV, no HMO, no HME. Which makes sense. You go with your first phase of the port, then bite off more.
The articles indicated that the service would be more basic than what is currently available in the U.S. That makes sense from a marketing point of view, too -- there's no point in confusing your story with a lot of value-added features when nobody even has the basic features yet.

It is interesting that the box has a phone jack, but there is no mention of telephone support -- only internet. Does anybody know how well-wired Taiwan is with broadband and home networks?
 
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