We really haven’t heard much of anything since the TiVo-Nero partnership to develop TiVo software for the PC was announced last November, so it is nice to get some confirmation that things are still moving forward. This confirmation comes via an ITBusiness.ca article on Nero, due to their new Canadian-born Nero Americas president, Richard Carriere. Nero is focused on expanding their products to embrace what they’re calling ‘liquid media’ – content on any device, anywhere, at anytime. And part of that focus includes the TiVo software:
One use-case being carved-out centres around the television. Nero has partnered with TiVo, developers of the popular set-top boxes for recording digital television tailored to personal preferences, and the two companies are working to develop a software solution that brings the Nero engine and the TiVo usability to the PC.
â€œYou’ll have all the power, performance and flexibility of a PC, the strength of the Nero engine, and the TiVo user experience,â€ said Carriere.
In essence, the digital cable feed could be connected into the PC which could be used as a personal video recorder (PVR), eliminating the need for a TiVo box. Programming could be watched on the PC, or a cable connected back to the TV to watch it there.
â€œIf you look at what’s available from HP or Microsoft today you can do it, but it’s not a very easy user experience,â€ said Carriere.
The details on the solution, which is expected to launch within the next year, are still being developed, but Carriere says it may open new opportunities for partners in the digital home integration space.
Interesting that they say “the digital cable feed could be connected into the PC”, that would imply that the software will work with CableCARD tuners. I’d rather expect it would. I’m a little disappointed by the “launch within the next year”, since this was announced last November it has already been six months since the announcement. I was hoping that we might see it released in time for the holiday shopping season this year, but I’m feeling more like sometime in 2009 at this point. Of course, we don’t know how complex the development work is – if it is a whole-cloth creation, or a port of one of the existing code bases such as the standalone OS or the cable OCAP/tru2way OS.
As I said at the time of the announcement, I’m still iffy on the PC-based software in general. Media Center PCs haven’t lit the world on fire, and it is a crowded market with established players. Breaking into that market is hard for new comers, as ReplayTV, Meedio/Yahoo, and others have discovered. But TiVo has their strong brand working for them, and Nero is an established player as well. So I’ll be very interested in seeing how it does when it hits the market.