Instead of requiring users to own a PC to archive videos to a hard disk, Tivo rents you storage space on their servers to archive your shows. Tivo does all the maintenance, backup, and whatnot. It is always up 24/7. No reboots necessary.
To help pay for the service, user agrees that commercials can be renewed (new content inserted in place of commercials which initially aired.
Part of the advertising revenue possibly goes to content owners.
One rationale for providing such fees might be if an option were offered to the user for having their original upgraded to a very high quality version of the same archived show. Option would only be available if content owner signs a license agreement with Tivo.
Hard technical problems- Bandwidth and hardware requirements are extreme, however huge efficiencies are possible for common content. If 30K users who recorded the same Comcast broadcast version of Survivor. Checksumming frames of the Video will identify which are unique (local advertisements, whatever) Only those frames (or noise difference on particular regions of the screen) need be transmitted and retained.
Why this is not MP3.Com's "virtual CD player". RIAA's suit focused on the initial infringing act of ripping the MP3 to disk. MPAA has not sued DVR vendors from recording content, so this defence does not apply. Financial motive. If MPAA members get their advertisement revenue per user view, they have an interest in pursuing this as a trial new source of revenue. By participating in trials, they need not give up the legal options to sue for shutdown. After evaluation of user patterns and projected revenue streams, they may be more amenable to continuation of the trials.
user may access their recorded video from any broadband video display device anywhere in the world.
User may store much larger amounts of video than they could afford if they chose to own.
Services can be performed on the Tivo server stored files, such as conversion to MP4 for replay on a particular PVP, or streaming to lower bandwidth devices.
Database software makes navigating the large number of archived shows more simple.
24/7 server reliability- no server maintenance, no security breaches, no reboots, no data loss on crashed hard drives, software is always up to date
You forget the compression optimization. There are huge redundancies in the uploads.
After the first upload, you only have to transmit the frames that are unique.
After the 100th upload of the same Survivor episode, all the Tivo needs to transmit is maybe a Satellite reacquisition error screen when Rain destroyed the reception.
Same optimization on the storage. You only store the differences, so really the cost of storage would be low. Advertisements probably would pay for it, and it could be free.
Time shift up to 1000 shows free with Tivo.
So no, upload is not the problem. Download is- because then you do have to xmit the whole thing. Less of a problem for Mpeg4 capable Tivos.
I like the USB HDD but unless you have really ridiculous capacity, you don't get to what I call Tivo level 2 shift in perception. Not only is all the Video you have the video that you like, but the video that closely matches your mood. Then the Tivo is responsive to your emotions at the moment. You are in a kwirky Danny Kay kind of mood, well too bad because that movie was purged two months ago. You remember seeing how to shove connectors on quad RG6 cables but can't quite recall how it went.... It becomes like a huge visual brain of memories that you can access much more rapidly.
Last edited by Justin Thyme : 12-13-2005 at 11:23 PM.