TiVo Inc. is expanding its video recording service so users will be able to transfer recorded TV shows onto Apple Computer's iPods, according to an Associated Press report. By adding support for the MPEG-4 video format, TiVo hopes to capitalize on the immense popularity of Apple iPods.
When TiVO launched TiVoToGo in January 2005, TiVO Series2 broadband subscribers gained the ability to transfer recorded shows to Windows PCs and Windows Mobile-based Portable Media Center devices such as the Creative Zen, Samsung Yepp YH-999, and iriver PMC-120. The new TiVOToGo servise will also support Sony's PlayStation Portable. There is no information available at this time regarding support for transferring recorded shows to Apple Mac OS X personal computers, although one might infer that supporting MPEG-4 video will allow Macs to play such content.
Tivo's TiVOToGo webpages do not currently mention support for the Apple iPod. The new service feature will be available "today" for current TiVo subscribers as a beta test and for others early next year, according to the Associated Press report.
"The ability to transfer shows between a TiVo and Apple's market-leading iPod or Sony Corp.'s popular PSP 'may help cement the idea that a TiVo is better than a generic DVR,' said Stephen Baker, an analyst with NPD Group. 'Their route to success is to differentiate themselves from generic DVRs,'" Julie Tamaki reports for The Los Angeles Times. "TiVo subscribers will need to purchase special software to tap the features, said Jim Denney, TiVo's vice president of product marketing. The TiVo box would need to be connected to a home network and the program would first have to be transferred to a PC... Restricted content includes video-on-demand and pay-per-view, Denney added. TiVo also plans to make files traceable to discourage 'people from distributing the content beyond their personal use.'"
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