Speculation is mounting that Seven Media are considering dumping their Tivo set top box after poor sales and the refusal of retailers like JB Hi Fi to stock the $699 offering which at this stage will only record free to air TV.
Despite a massive advertising blitz during the recent Olympics sales of the Tivo PVR which was sold exclusively via Harvey Norman did not hit targets according to Seven Network insiders with the media Company now said to be reviewing their options for their set top box which was slammed by reviewers. PC Magazine wrote “unlike its US counterpart, the Aussie TiVo is a crippled box. Shipping with a 160GB HD, the TiVo allows you to record up to a pathetic 32 hours of HD or 62 of SD television.
A key problem for Seven Media is content and the emergence of IPTV which will allow consumers to download movies and other content to a HD TV screen. They are also set to come against content kiosks which will sell content that can be plug into or downloaded to mobile phones, HD TV’s, MP3 players or other devices with a screen.
Another problem for Seven Media is the launch by Tivo and Nero of Germany of a pre packaged software program that allows consumers to link a PC with a HD TV and do almost everything that the new Seven Tivo PVR does. The new software basically turns a Windows PC into a TV recorder.
The new software offering will cost around $199 when it goes on sale Oct. 15. It includes a remote and a TV tuner that plugs into the PC. The interface on the computer screen looks just like the one on a TV equipped with a TiVo box.
Joshua Danovitz, vice president and general manager of international business at TiVo said of the new package “It’s really part of a global TiVo strategy,” Mr. Danovitz said.
Nero who has been around longer than Tivo said that consumers who already have a tuner-equipped PC, can buy the software only for around $99. Buyers will also get a one-year subscription to TiVo’s program guide updates. Renewal will cost $99 per year.
ChannelNews has been unable to get a statement from Seven Media as of yet. More on this story to follow.