TiVo didn’t show anything to the general public at CES, but instead had meeting rooms that were by invite only, and little is actually known about what they were showing. What many really want to know is whether TiVo will finally release a new MPEG 4 HD receiver for DirecTV users; and officially, this question has still yet to be answered.
Our sources from the shadows tell a bit of a different story, however. Apparently, development of a new DirecTivo HD unit is proceeding and if our sources are correct, we could finally see a release in April or May of this year. Of course, we know for sure that they are working on it, but it does seem that the sense of urgency in getting the new box out might be a bit lacking.
It has been a long wait, but you might not want to get too excited, as rumors suggest that it will only contain a subset of the latest TiVo features; and worse yet, it will offer no multi-room support. The new DirecTiVo offering is said to be built on a Thompson manufactured reference design that does incorporate many of the features that customers want; but the big advantage will be the return of the TiVo user interface that many still insist is better than the user interface used in the DirecTV DVR models.
From the whispers we hear, at least some beta testing has been taking place, as TiVo does apparently have a design that they are working on to refine and debug the software; but with the lack of official confirmation, it would seem that DirecTV isn’t too worried about when this new box will finally arrive and be available for purchase by customers.
It does seem that the new DirecTiVo is becoming the new “Duke Nukem” of satellite DVR hardware, but as one of our sources reminded us today, even that title does finally appear to be finding its way to release. We have to think that the same fate will finally see the new DirecTiVo find its way to release, as well.