During this site’s hiatus, back in July, 2009, TiVo and Best Buy announced a strategic alliance. Building on that, in May, 2010, TiVo and Insignia (one of Best Buy’s house brands), announced that they would be developing connected HDTVs using the TiVo UI. Now it seems that partnership will bear fruit on July 31st, according to information uncovered by Zatz Not Funny.
Note that these TV’s do not include DVRs! They are connected TVs, or cTV’s in Best Buy parlance, which use the TiVo HD UI, introduced on the Premiere, for their functionality. I don’t know if there is any Trojan Horse DVR functionality in there – say via an add-on module (Toshiba and others have sold HDTVs with this kind of sidecar DVR capability in the past), but we’ll see.
We really don’t know too much about the feature set of these TVs at this point. Will they support streaming shows from a TiVo Premiere (or Premiere Elite) in the home? We don’t know, but I hope they do. I guess we won’t have long to find out.
Two models are slated for July 31st – a 32 inch and a 42 inch set. And no TiVo subscription is required! I’m guessing Best Buy is footing the bill for the guide data service. Kind of like TiVo Basic on the old Pioneer and Toshiba TiVo/DVD combo units.
See the Zatz Not Funny post for more, including photos of the Best Buy source materials.