TiVo Reveals 'Next-Gen Platform' to Combine Cable and Streaming Content Across Multiple Devices

TiVo this morning announced a new "Next-Gen Platform" that aims to combine content from cable tv, streaming, DVR, and on-demand all in one place (via Engadget). The enterprise announcement is aimed at operators who might partner with TiVo on the platform, so the official launch of such a service is likely a ways off.

Image via Engadget

When it does launch, the Next-Gen Platform will deliver all of a user's content to "managed" set-top boxes powered by Linux and Android TV, as well as "unmanaged" devices like Apple TV and Amazon Fire TV. The OS-agnostic approach will let users access shows and movies from both cable providers and streaming services -- Netflix is used specifically in promo images -- on Apple TV, iPhone, MacBook, and more.

This means that TiVo's platform isn't a new cord-cutting service of its own, but something that cable and streaming operators will have to choose to integrate into their existing services for customers to gain access.
TiVo’s Next-Gen Platform allows providers to deliver content to customers where they want to watch it, whether on managed set-top-boxes, such as Linux and Android TV; unmanaged bring-your-own devices, such as Apple TV and Amazon Fire; as well as mobile and web. Our Next-Gen Platform gives operators rapid agility for faster time to market and scalability, while subscribers enjoy a greater level of personalization across content sources and devices.
Specifically, operators will be able to integrate the platform on managed set-top boxes with TiVo for Linux and TiVo for Android TV. The company said this cloud-powered software will offer TiVo's personalized recommendations, voice commands, and the Next-Gen Platform's main hook of integration across other devices for a multi-screen experience.


The other parts of the platform include TiVo for Streamers and TiVo for Mobile, which will be apps that offer the same features and experience as the set-top boxes, but delivered to Apple TV, Fire TV, iPhone, Android, and more. For the smartphone app, TiVo said that it will be able to "support multiple use cases," from a standalone, cloud-enabled Internet Protocol television (IPTV) app separate from the user's set-top box, as well as a hybrid app that could be more of a companion experience to TiVo's big-screen apps.

TiVo argues that the Next-Gen Platform will "help operators reduce churn, drive customer engagement, stay ahead of the competition and own the customer experience," but at this time no partners have been confirmed to support the future service. With CES starting next week on January 9, more information about TiVo's new platform is expected to be coming soon.

Tag: TiVo


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19 months ago
I can't wrap my head around what this is.
Rating: 11 Votes
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19 months ago
I hope it's what I've been wanting for a long time. If I want to see a particular show/series/movie, I do not care which of my services it's on and I don't want to go "log into" that service or sub-service to find/watch it. I want a central location that will bring the media to my screen from whatever services I subscribe to (NF, Hulu, AMZ/Prime, etc) without me having to exit the central location, including streaming sources. It should auto log in to each service in necessary (from creds you provided during set up) and bring the media to the screen. All media access from a central location. That's the dream.
Rating: 4 Votes
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19 months ago

I hope it's what I've been wanting for a long time. If I want to see a particular show/series/movie, I do not care which of my services it's on and I don't want to go "log into" that service or sub-service to find/watch it. I want a central location that will bring the media to my screen from whatever services I subscribe to (NF, Hulu, AMZ/Prime, etc) without me having to exit the central location, including streaming sources. It should auto log in to each service in necessary (from creds you provided during set up) and bring the media to the screen. All media access from a central location. That's the dream.


So basically an Apple TV?
Rating: 3 Votes
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19 months ago
I won’t hold my breath on this actually turning out to be useful. The current Bolt (which I have) claimed to be an “all in one” hub for all your cable and streaming video needs... but I’ve found it’s not particularly good at it. And, if you follow TiVo at all, you’re probably aware that we users haven’t been particularly impressed with their software prowess, especially since the Rovi takeover.

There are a couple really glaring flaws I’ve run into with streaming media and the Bolt:


* Some streaming services are dependent on your cable provider being a partner with TiVo on this. But why should my TiVo care about that? My third-gen Apple TV doesn’t care. If I have a Hulu subscription, I should be able to stream Hulu - end of story. (Hulu is just being used as an example... I can’t remember if it’s one of the problematic services or not)
* Cable “on demand” items show up as available, even if they require an extra fee for watching or an additional subscription for access... even though there’s a setting which purports to prevent that.

Combine those with other annoyances, like the hit-or-miss availability of commercial skipping and the ever-more-frequent guide data errors, and I really can’t think of a reason why I or anyone else should consider any new TiVo box or service.
Rating: 2 Votes
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19 months ago

Combine those with other annoyances, like the hit-or-miss availability of commercial skipping and the ever-more-frequent guide data errors, and I really can’t think of a reason why I or anyone else should consider any new TiVo box or service.


While I certainly agree it has it's quirks, issues and has tons of room for improvement, the (non-new) Tivo still is currently (to my knowledge anyway) the only box/UI that successfully integrates an old school cable box with the most important OTT products. The interface is still far better than the crappy one I get with Spectrum, and better than the last iteration of DirecTV I had before. Couple that with the ability to easily stream from Hulu, Amazon Prime and Netflix, and you have an interface that does something no one else's currently does.

It's not perfect, but for daily use right now, it's the most seamless environment I've found. I can watch live TV, then jump to Netflix, then jump straight back to something on the DVR, then over to Prime for a movie without changing inputs/sources, etc etc. from a single UI with a single remote.

Instead of trying to create some new BS products, I'd love it if they just focused on improving their core competency. This is a problem with a lot of companies, they end up hiring idiots who have no idea what consumers actually want/need.
Rating: 2 Votes
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19 months ago

I can't wrap my head around what this is.


I've had and loved Tivo for many years. Whatever this is, it is DOA. No doubt about it.
Makes me sad, but Tivo is more than likely on deathwatch.
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I don't read this as a "BOX" but a branded aggregation platform for streaming content.

This is a service for content publishers. TIVO is trying to provide a central managed location for content providers to peer their subscriptions and content. Allowing transparency between content services.

Let's say you pay $11 a month for HULU.

How about $24 a month for HULU, Netflix and Direct TV Now?

This platform seems like the place where TIVO wants to allow provides to deliver content in a wholesale manner and then allow TIVO to deliver the content to the consumer. A secondary revenue source when people want lots of choices but they are all locked together. Less opportunity to cancel Netflix for HULU depending on show preferences when you have them all combined into a single package.

This of this like the Cable, Phone and Internet packages you pay for today. Once you have phone and Internet on a provider, you are less likely to switch just for Cable, etc.



DOA. I love Tivo, but cable companies are NOT going to cut TiVo into the profit share. Zero chance of this taking off, in my opinion.
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I won’t hold my breath on this actually turning out to be useful. The current Bolt (which I have) claimed to be an “all in one” hub for all your cable and streaming video needs... but I’ve found it’s not particularly good at it. And, if you follow TiVo at all, you’re probably aware that we users haven’t been particularly impressed with their software prowess, especially since the Rovi takeover.

There are a couple really glaring flaws I’ve run into with streaming media and the Bolt:


* Some streaming services are dependent on your cable provider being a partner with TiVo on this. But why should my TiVo care about that? My third-gen Apple TV doesn’t care. If I have a Hulu subscription, I should be able to stream Hulu - end of story. (Hulu is just being used as an example... I can’t remember if it’s one of the problematic services or not)
* Cable “on demand” items show up as available, even if they require an extra fee for watching or an additional subscription for access... even though there’s a setting which purports to prevent that.

Combine those with other annoyances, like the hit-or-miss availability of commercial skipping and the ever-more-frequent guide data errors, and I really can’t think of a reason why I or anyone else should consider any new TiVo box or service.


Although I do love TiVo since they are far better than any cable company DVR, Tivo is STILL updating their UI to HD. Not 4K. Not 8k. They are still getting ready for the HD era. Just depressing.
Rating: 2 Votes
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19 months ago
This appears to be attempting to merge the best of both worlds. For the so-called cord cutters, it brings a variety of streaming services management together in a single interface, probably searchable across services and likely with a real, fully-functional DVR instead of the NOT fully-functional, virtual DVRs built into some streaming services.

It's also accepting that if one wants the fullest live TV experience, the choice is still only the traditional sources of cable (or Satt) + maybe OTA antenna too, so it's integrating a cable option into the same box. Yes, we can argue that PS Vue, DirecTV Now, Sling, etc all cover this base but none of them bring key quality basics like Dolby Digital 5.1 and they all count against broadband caps (while cable service doesn't). Again the same DVR brings a fully-functional DVR to this side of things too.

One central box- this TiVo box- manages all content, overcoming the need to rent a proprietary box from the cable company to attach to every TV. Instead each TV can be connected to this "hub" through an app, running on devices like :apple:TV and similar (equipment that many may already own).

TiVo already has some "play anywhere" features, so all this content is probably streamable to mobile devices wherever you are.

And it's all wrapped up in the TiVo UI goodness that TiVo users love.

I'm not sure it's all of that but that's what I think I read in several articles about it.

I've basically attempted to build something comparable via hodgepodge:

* HDhomerun Prime (with Comcast cablecard) +
* HDhomerun Extend (for locals) +
* Channels App (for unified on-screen guide) +
* Channels App DVR (for a traditional, fully-functional DVR).

Multiple :apple:TVs around the house bring the same to all TVs. Net result: no Cable Box leases but cable service (so I get good + smoothly playing + consistent HD and DD5.1 without eating any broadband capacity). Via "triple play" offer, this is cheaper than sacrificing quality items like DD5.1 and trying to go with a streaming service alternative(s) to get the channels that I desire. Comcast's mobile app allows many channels to be streamed to mobile devices anywhere. All TVs have access to a fully-functional, real DVR with centralized storage (that I can expand to basically any size). Video stored doesn't have watch-by deadlines, etc.

While I'm VERY HAPPY with this setup (for now), this TiVo platform appears to stretch that to integrating mainstream streaming services right into the same UI instead of having to hop app-to-app as I do now to also check what's on this other (steaming) service or that other (streaming) service.

I don't think any of us quite have all that in any existing :apple:TV-based option. So if this is as it appears to me, it looks like it takes a meaningful step forward in a kind of "one service to rule them all" way. It's not quite "cord cutter" but one can't cut the cord and keep the fundamental quality we've been accustomed to for years. It appears to overcome the need to hop app-to-app and search within individual apps to find something. It almost certainly brings a full-featured, real & unified DVR. It gets rid of proprietary lease boxes attached to every TV. It should be "grandma proof" meaning TiVo easy to use instead of trying to teach grandma how to hop app-to-app, use this input for OTA locals vs this input for :apple:TV, etc.

I think it's what I have now (minus OTA antenna integration) plus smooth integration of streaming services into the UI and a TiVo-class DVR and supporting features. If so, I'm interested.

Weak point? Adoption would kill a lot of lease box revenue for cable companies. As such, I don't see them being much interested in backing this thing. And I think I read that TiVo is basically shopping this for exactly that.
Rating: 2 Votes
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19 months ago

I can't wrap my head around what this is.


My thoughts exactly.
Rating: 2 Votes
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19 months ago

No. Apple TV and most other OTT boxes still require you to go into each "app" (like NF, Hulu, AMZ/Prime, YT, DVR shows) and search for your media and then play it from the app. I want a central dashboard that is service agnostic and will auto search everywhere (all services, all streaming, all local drives/DVR/NAS) and then play the media directly from there without having to launch/login to other apps/services. Not centralized by service, but by media itself, regardless of the source.


You haven’t used an AppleTV in awhile, have you? The TV app takes care of that. Netflix is the only app that’s still refusing to use the API that I use regularly.
Rating: 2 Votes
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19 months ago
Like PlayOn? The TV App on AppleTV? Plex plus streaming?

Why is Tivo still in business?
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I loved TiVo back in the day, and while I’m sure it has the best interface, it feels like the !ac is the 90s—better UI but an island unto itself which makes for an inferior value proposition.

What’s worrisome about this announcement is two-fold. First, no one has signed up for it;one would think they pre-sold it to a few cable companies or streaming companies. Second, feels they are late to the game. Companies like Comcast want to own the experience and customer relationship, and there are tons of players from Apple to Google to Rome to Amazon playing in this space.

I’m rooting for TiVo, but I suspect this will fail.



This kind of feels like the Atari Jaguar of media solutions.
Rating: 2 Votes
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