Rumors. Apple rumors in particular, so juicy. Let’s hope I don’t get sued like the poor Harvard student with his thinksecret site.
I have no inside source- just read on that Apple may be buying TiVo- and this makes me happy and a little worried.
Happy because TiVo is too good to go the way of the BetaMax, or to lose out to cable companies and satellite companies selling DVR’s to their customers. Time Warner has a DVR that records hi-def, but the interface is pathetic compared to my beloved lo-def TiVo. Apple in their latest releases of software have said- this is the year of High def- even adding hi-def capability to the free with every Mac editing software iMovie. They had Sony’s chairman out on stage with Steve Jobs bragging about the new HDV camera during MacWorld. (I’m lusting for the HVR-Z1U camera- $5K). Apple buying TiVo would bring HD to my TiVo fast. Yeah.
The fact is, a TiVo box is just a little Linux computer with a hard drive (always too small a hard drive too), Apple OSX is the best version of Unix out there- it would be easy to port the TiVo functionality onto a Mac.
TiVo isn’t really a hardware company (they are now practically giving away the box) anyway- they are a software and subscription company. They sell an interface to your TV programming, and a data feed of what that programming is. That is what I love and pay for- not the box.
Apple could take TiVo to the next level by taking that data- like I want every show with Kelly McGillis in it, and record it, and use it as an iTunes music store for TV. Think about it- you miss tonight’s episode of “Lost” because you are on a blind date- you go home, click on your Apple iTelevision link and buy the show as a download to your Apple TiVo- and it delivers in HD via a bit torrent type download. This is the future of programming.
The worry I have is that Apple doesn’t have great luck at running a subscription business. E-world was a flop, and I constantly read about problems with .Mac Apple may not be ready to keep TiVo as it is and that would be a mistake.
Time will tell. Apple is usually good about keeping secrets, so we should know if this is true in the next 2 weeks.