Archive for the ‘Home Entertainment’ category

TiVo Adds iPod Support – For a Price

June 21, 2006

BetaNews is reporting that TiVo's new version of their desktop software allows customers to transfer recorded programming from their boxes to their computers and, finally, to their iPods that support video playback.

The DVR maker also released a premium version of the software called TiVo Desktop Plus with support for transferring content to Apple's iPod, Sony's PSP, Treo and Nokia phones, along with other portable devices that support MPEG-4 or H.264 video. The Plus version is priced at $24.95 USD.

TiVo's basic desktop software, TiVo Desktop 2.3, is still free.  It allows you to schedule nightly transfers of your recorded programming from the TiVo box to your computer as well as view photos and listen to MP3s stored on your computer on your television.  To use TiVo Desktop 2.3, you'll need a Series2 TiVo (the software doesn't work with DIRECTV TiVo boxes) and Windows 2000 or XP.  Click here to view the full list of TiVo's Desktop 2.3 and Plus upgrade requirements and supported portable devices.

Prior to TiVo's release of their Desktop Plus, if you wanted to view your recorded TiVo programming on your iPod or other portable multimedia device, you needed a third-party file format converter such as Video-2-iPod.  If you want to transfer your recorded programming from your TiVo box to some non-iPod portable devices, you may still need a third-party software file converter; Kinoma Player.

While iTunes does offer TV programs, the selection is limited to more popular series.  With TiVo's new capabilities, your selection is limited only to what you can record.  If you enjoy less popular shows, such as Animal Planet's Breed All About It, the TiVo Desktop Plus software could be your best friend.  Additionally, you can purchase single episodes from iTunes for $1.99 per episode or you can purchase a Season Pass, which is the entire season of your favorite series.  TiVo Desktop Plus's one-time price pays for itself with one season of a TV series or roughly twelve individual episodes.  If the series or programming you want to see isn't available on iTunes, purchasing the Plus upgrade for TiVo's desktop service is extremely tempting.

One of the best things about TV episodes downloaded from iTunes is they're commercial free.  Obviously, if you record network programming on your TiVo, those episodes will be punctuated with commercials.  Watching a recorded TV show on your DVR and skipping the commercials is good.  Watching a commercial-free episode is even better.  So what's a cutting-edge techno geek to do?

The obvious solution is to use both iTunes and the TiVo Desktop Plus software!  If the episodes you want to see are available on iTunes, purchase and download them from there.  If they're not, use TiVo's software to transfer them to your iPod.

Happy 'podding! 

Advertisements