When you think of TiVo you think of recording television shows, right? In a move that seems odd at first but begins to make more and more sense as you sit on a pier bench gazing out over the vast ocean, alone with your thoughts, this recently announced Best Buy/TiVo partnership might just work.
The basic idea is that Best Buy will begin selling its Insignia brand TVs with the TiVo interface built right in. You won’t have access to DVR recording since the TVs won’t contain hard drives, but you’ll seemingly be able to do just about everything else—use the TiVo programming guide, access all the online features like Amazon movies and Netflix streaming, and that kind of stuff. The TVs themselves will feature broadband connections.
The press release is pretty vague when it comes to details, other than to say that “development is underway” and customers can expect “an exceptional, intuitive user experience for accessing online content by utilizing the latest TiVo non-DVR software and advanced television service.”
What’s not mentioned is whether or not the TVs will be cable card compatible, allowing digital cable subscribers to access the hundreds of channels that come along with pricier cable packages. If using cable cards is an option and you don’t mind not being able to record anything, you’d theoretically be able to use these TVs without having to rent a cable box.
What’s also not clear is whether or not these connected TVs will be able to stream content from your computer or other TiVo boxes, a feature that’s available with the standard TiVo equipment today. And finally, I’d guess that you won’t have to pay a monthly TiVo subscription fee but that hasn’t been explicitly stated in the press release.
But assuming we’re talking about an internet connected TV with all the TiVo goodies (except DVR functionality) that’ll allow you to skip the cable box and stream content from your computer and other TiVo boxes on your network, I agree with Dave Zatz, who says, “I could see this easily being a killer kitchen or den television and DVR extender. Otherwise, meh?”
via Zatz Not Funny!
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