TiVo, Netflix to deliver on-demand films over Internet

Thu, 10/30/2008 - 8:20am
Mike Robuck

DVR pioneer TiVo and Netflix have reached an accord that will allow Netflix’s content to be sent to TiVo customers in on-demand mode.

The two companies said today that they’re initiating a test of the new service in several thousand households across the nation and anticipate that the service will be widely available in early December.

TiVo customers will need a Series 3 or higher HD DVR and a broadband connection in order to stream Netflix’s 12,000 movies and TV shows to their homes.

TiVo's Series 3 HD DVR 

TiVo's Series 3 HD DVR

“Joining forces with Netflix creates the ultimate video-on-demand service and solidifies TiVo’s leading position as the one-box solution for aggregating, searching and delivering the best content available anywhere right to the TV,” said Tom Rogers, president and CEO of TiVo. “Adding Netflix to our already vast library of content differentiates TiVo even further from any other offering in the market today.”

Movies streamed from Netflix to TiVo DVRs are sent through a wired or wireless broadband connection and a Netflix Queue-based user interface. Members can visit the Netflix Web site to add movies and TV episodes to their individual instant Queues. 

Once selected, those choices will automatically be displayed on subscribers’ TVs and will be available to watch instantly through the TiVo service. With the TiVo remote control, users will be able to browse their instant Queue, make selections on the TV screen, and they will also have the ability to read synopses and rate movies. 

Customers will also be able to use trick-play modes for pausing, fast-forwarding, rewinding and re-starting whenever they wish.

While TiVo has worked hard to incorporate its technology with cable operators such as Comcast and Cox Communications (story here), the service with Netflix could pose a significant threat to cable operators’ on-demand services.

Financial terms of the agreement between TiVo and Netflix weren’t available.

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