Well, we were at the point where we were pretty sure it would never happen. And, happily, we were wrong!
TiVo today issued a press release about a new HD TiVo for DirecTV that should be ready by the end of 2009. See the full information in TiVo’s press release.
We’ve had customers complain about DirecTV DVRs for years now, preferring the TiVo interface. And it looks like the day will come again when DirecTV and TiVo work together to make a DVR that has the best interface, and access to all of DirecTV’s programming.
DirecTV and TiVo ceased manufacture of the HR10-250 years ago now. That unit, still very popular among our customers (and still the main unit in my house) was the first mainstream HD DVR at all, and the only HD TiVo for several years, as well as the only DirecTV HD DVR for many years. Many TiVo fans even joined DirecTV just to get to use this hardware.
But as DirecTV decided to move to MPEG4 for new HD channels to conserve bandwidth, they needed to produce new equipment to deal with the MPEG4 signals. So they produced newer DVRs without TiVo – the HR20 and HR21. These units can read the older MPEG2 signals and the newer MPEG4 signals. The TiVo-based HR10-250 can only read the MPEG2 signals, and is therefore unable to get the new channels DirecTV releases in HD – and some even in SD.
During the DirecTV reign of Rupert Murdoch, we guessed that new hardware with TiVo would never be developed, because one of News Corp’s other companies was NDS, an engineer of DVRs in Europe and Israel. NDS engineered DVRs for DirecTV.
But now that Murdoch’s News Corp. isn’t in control any more, it seems that TiVo was able to start work with DirecTV all over again.
For years now, we’ve been helping customers navigate the split between TiVo and DirecTV. It looks like, at last, those days may be coming to an end, and customers who love both DirecTV and TiVo won’t have to decide between them any longer. It may be a long year of waiting . . .