TiVo To Go

There is a lot of news going around my household in this New Year. Not the least of which is the fact that tomorrow is the last day of my job at URS Corporation or that I have several new gadgets that don’t entirely work! That’s all for another time, though. This post is all about the TiVo.

TiVo announced the TiVo To Go service way back in January of ’04 and finally rolled it out on Monday. Well, they sort of rolled it out. They posted an updated version of TiVo desktop on their site and the newest version of the TiVo software will include the capabilities. Of course, the scheduled downloads for the box software don’t occur immediately. The best you can hope for is requesting priority and you might get it in the next few weeks. Further, there’s no Mac support as of yet.

Now, to be able to burn your recorded shows from your PC (again, not Mac as of yet) to DVD, you’ll use Sonic’s MyDVD v6.1, which was announced yesterday. I had a copy of MyDVD that was pre-loaded on my Dell Dimension 4600 Media Center PC. I didn’t really care for the interface, so I never really used it much. I purchased Nero 6 as soon as I got the PC and have used it ever since, especially since Nero soon added support for Microsoft’s .dvr-ms format mpeg video. That aside, a soon there-after bought a Plextor PX-708A DVD Burner and after a couple of frustrating days, finally learned that MyDVD + PX-708A = memory dump. Bad.

Sonic’s site lists the PX-708A as compatible hardware, so hopefully that problem’s fixed now. None-the-less, this is now one more piece of software that does something that another piece of software I already own does, with the exception of one tiny task which will cost around $50. Not to sound cheap, but why can’t TiVo and Nero get together on this as well? Since Bill Gates announced at CES earlier today that Microsoft’s going to support TiVo ToGo in Windows software, why can’t Nero be on board?

I’m addicted to TiVo and desparately want the ability to get my video files to and from the machine to some network storage or my PC. However, I’m not crazy about buying another piece of software that I wasn’t impressed with before to replace some software that I really like.

Lastly, on the TiVo front, they’ve been taking a lot of flack over their sollution to skipping over advertising. The idea is that when you fast-forward through 2 minutes (or so) of commericals, a static banner ad will pop up on the screen. Frankly, I don’t care so long as it doesn’t eat up my bandwidth. I’m watching people zip around the screen at 4x FF, what do I care if an ad is slapped over that? Ads are everywhere, and good ads are an artform. People get too upset over advertising to realize that when done right (and whose to say this won’t be), it helps the customer connect with a supplier. It does appear that some people seem to agree that this is a non-issue, and I think that no one is goign to get rid of their TiVo based on this. Further, this is a whole lot more tenable than the Senate’s stupid sollution to making fast-forward illegal!

After doing some further reading, I thought I’d post this link to a response on the TiVo commercial skip stuff from one of the product managers at TiVo.