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TiVo Unveiled Series 2 DVR Platform Plans

Las Vegas – TiVo unveiled plans for its Series 2 digital video recorder (DVR) platform that will enable a broad range of additional services and broadband Internet connectivity.

To provide those capabilities, the company announced strategic partnerships with streaming media developer RealNetworks, games developer Jellyvision and video-on-demand enabler Radiance to deliver new entertainment services for the next-generation hard-drive-based recorders.

Starting around the holidays in 2002, TiVo said it would distribute digital music, video party games and video-on-demand services on the new platform.

Currently, a TiVo Series 2 device is being distributed by AT&T cable operations as a side-car to its digital cable receivers. Beginning in February, TiVo will sell its own standalone Series 2 DVR direct to consumers through the Web site at a $399 suggested retail price. The company said it expects announcements of additional products from CE manufacturer partners.

As with earlier TiVo models, consumers will be required to subscribe to a program listings service for $9.95 per month or $249 for a one-time upfront rate.

TiVo CEO Mike Ramsay said Series 2 recorders will include larger hard drives than current TiVo DVRs, enabling up to 60 hours of recording time in a smaller, sleeker set-top box. The unit will include two USB expansion ports for easy connectivity with peripheral devices including digital cameras, MP3 players and other TiVo DVRs and network devices in the home.

Through the ports, users will be able to access the new partner services including RealNetworks’ music jukebox or digital photo viewer. A network adapter will enable subscribers to play video party games developed by Jellyvision, listen to Internet radio stations or share programs with other TiVo devices in the home.