Maybe it’s just a fluke, but we’ve been getting a flood of emails and phone calls today from customers asking if they can use their combo DirecTV TiVo with Comcast cable. The answer, unfortunately, is no. These units can only read DirecTV signals and can’t do anything all all with a cable signal – nor can they be modified to read one.
My guess is that there’s a somewhat straightforward reason for all of these questions, which is reflected in another slew of questions that we’re getting: is DirecTV cutting off all TiVos? The answer here is, emphatically, no. DirecTV will phase out the TiVo service on their new DVRs, but they aren’t changing the service on existing DVRs, nor are they cutting support for it. There are several million DVRs with TiVo out there, and the cost to them to swap them would be huge. And if you need any further proof that DirecTV will continue to support these units, look no further than the UltimateTV boxes. These haven’t been made for years, but DirecTV still sends out the signals they need. And why not? If they stopped, they’d both anger some customers, and have to swap out those units.