Why Tivo is better than Time-Warner DVR
We have rented and used Time-Warner DVR and Tivo for years. Here are some of the differences I've encountered.
- TW DVR requires you to have expensive digital cable (last time I checked). Tivo does not. We didn't need all those channels, so we opted for basic cable, and the Tivo paid for itself in a few months. We could even downgrade to the super-basic cable for $15 and the Tivo would still work fine, recording our network shows.
- You keep the box with you. We just moved to another apartment, and took our Tivo with us. Didn't need to mess with turn-in with Time Warner. Didn't need to worry about losing all the shows we'd recorded (or trying to watch them all before turn-in).
- Tivo has a much better user experience than TW DVR. It's easier to get around and do what you want to do. It's less buggy. More intuitive.
- You can set shows to record from anywhere in the world that has an internet connection. I can be at work and remember a show I want to record. I get on www.tivo.com and I can set it up.
- You can put software on your computer that lets you download the shows from your Tivo to your computer. You can store them for later in an external hard drive (like that time you were on that episode of Cops), or burn them to a DVD, or whatever else. Similarly, this can be initiated from your Tivo as well: you could have a spare computer with a big hard drive and just select the show on your Tivo and tell it to transfer to the other computer. Now, more space is freed up on your Tivo!
- Your Tivo can be set up to play video, show pictures, and play audio files from your computer. In other words, you can be watching TV, and then decide to watch a video on TV that is actually on your computer. Or browse a directory of Images like a slideshow, or play MP3 files over your TV.
- Monthly fees for Tivo are close to TW, so that's pretty much the same.
- If you buy another Tivo box, you do get discounted monthly rates, but the great thing is that the two boxes will talk to each other. If both are dual-tuner, then you could be recording 4 shows at once! Also, if you're in the bedroom and want to watch a show recorded by the Tivo in the Living Room, you can use the BR Tivo to tell the LR Tivo to transfer the show over to your other Tivo so that you can watch it in the bedroom.
- You can put ratings on the shows (i.e. "3 Thumbs Up" or "2 Thumbs Down", etc) so that Tivo will learn what you like and can recommend shows that you may like but don't know about. Also, you can set these "Suggestions" to automatically record, so that you have fresh variety on your box for you to browse.
- If you're really Tech-savvy, you might like the fact that your Tivo is just a Linux computer. You can take the drive out and tweak it, etc. Note: that does void the warranty I think. But there are many sites out there that tell you how to tweak your Tivo.
- The TW DVR we used ... in maybe 2005 or so... would not reliably record the right show when there was a conflict. We knew how to order the preferences, but we were constantly experiencing problems with it. Never had an issue like that with Tivo. I put this one last because TW will probably fix this at some point (and may already have).