Zatz Not Funny is reporting on a new Bear Stearns report which suggests that DirecTV may return to using TiVo for their DVRs once Liberty Media complete their acquisition of DirecTV:
We believe the new DTV management may be more amenable to renewing a relationship with TiVo. The TiVo HD-DVR offers several advantages over the NDS DVRs, including better user interface, wireless access can provide quasi-VOD service, ad revs would be incremental, and TiVoâ€™s HD-DVR is already cheaper than NDSâ€™ HD-DVR.
We already know that the TiVo HD platform has been designed to serve as a basis for further development. And the DVB-T reference platform, which is TiVo HD derived and forms the basis for the Australian unit, is also capable of being modified for DVB-S – another satellite system. It is logical to believe that the TiVo HD could also be readily modified to be a new DirecTiVo.
TiVo and DirecTV still have a working relationship, TiVo is working on updated software for the current DirecTiVos. And Liberty Media is one of TiVo’s corporate investors, so it certainly makes sense that they would want to throw business in TiVo’s direction. Just as News Corp shifted DirecTV’s DVRs to NDS, as News Corp also owns NDS. Keeping it in the family is a better return on investment.
This is certainly not the first time the rumor has come up since the Liberty Media buy was first announced. DirecTV’s recent acquisition of ReplayTV casts a small cloud on the matter, but it still seems like that buy was for the patents. The patents would give DTV some protection from lawsuits, such as the one TiVo brought against DISH Network, as well as giving them some more leverage in negotiations with other vendors.
EDIT: As I was writing this post I meant to mention that TiVo is participating in the Bear Stearns 21st Annual Media Conference on March 11, 2008. I just plain forgot to include that tidbit somehow.