TiVo Inc. has formally introduced its much-anticipated, HD-capable Series 3 digital video recorder.
TiVo is calling the new DVR the first to come THX-certified, which means recordings will retain the fidelity of the original broadcast. It will carry a retail price of $799.99.
In addition to traditional features such as Season Pass and WishList searches, the box will also support dual tuners, and two slots for CableCARDs. The two-CableCARD set-up is there to authorize both tuners for cable-fed services and watch and record capabilities.
Current generation CableCARD "hosts" (i.e. set-tops and digital TVs) do not support interactive services such as video-on-demand. A coming two-way CableCARD platform, which will support the Multistream CableCARD (M-Card) will, however.
The hard drive on the Series 3 will store up to 32 hours of HD programming, and up to 300 hours of standard definition programming. With a software download, the DVR will also support content encoded in the more bandwidth efficient MPEG-4 format.
Thanks to an Ethernet port, the box will also handle downloaded applications, and later this year, will support TiVoCast, a service that pipes in video from Internet sources such as CNET and iVillage.