The TiVo HD: interface and features

We take a look at the TiVo HD unit

  • The Suggestions page is the other mainstay of the TiVo. When you record a show or use the “Thumbs Up” button, the Suggestions page will work out which shows are similar — in terms of director, actors or genres — and then display them prominently with guide information.

  • All that’s needed to use the TiVo is an antenna connection, a television set to display content and a broadband Internet connection — which is used for downloading the electronic program guide, as well as the digital movie downloads that will be offered early next year.

  • The remote is simply laid out, featuring the prominent red and green “Thumbs Up” and “Thumbs Down” buttons that are used for recommending and rating shows.

  • Plenty of connections are offered, with HDMI, S-Video, component and composite carrying video, and audio transfer being handled by digital optical and analog RCA.

  • The unit is a similar size to a set-top box or VCR.

  • The TiVO HD box will be able to store at least 60 hours of standard-definition content and 20 hours of high-definition content.

  • Even when watching live TV a pop-up guide will display a small amount of information about the program and offer the option for an instantaneous recording.

  • Once the Wishlist is created it can be easily accessed to find out what programs meeting the criteria are being broadcast in the next week.

  • The unit itself is a copy of the third-generation TiVo unit released in the US in 2006. It features twin high-definition tuners, but differs from the US model in possessing only a 160GB hard drive.

  • TiVo Central is the home page of the TiVo software. From here users can go straight to watching live TV, browse through previously recorded shows, search the EPG for upcoming programs, and connect wirelessly to a PC for photo sharing.

  • The Wishlist is a search feature that means users can look for specific genres, actors or programs that are coming up — with the additional functionality of automatically scheduling these programs when they do appear.

  • The unit is unobtrusively styled, designed to be hidden away in an A/V rack.

  • The guide can be displayed in various formats — focusing on one channel at a time, or displaying all channels simultaneously. Live TV is still displayed behind the EPG.

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