TiVo, We Hardly Knew Ye
from the first-mover-disadvantage dept
Somoene over at Slate is already declaring the TiVo dead, saying it was too far ahead of the game. While those who have it can’t stop talking about how wonderful it is, they’re still having trouble signing up users and making a profit. The suggestion is that they have “first mover disadvantage” where the idea is cool – but too complicated for most consumers to see the benefit. So, while a similar concept may succeed in the future, TiVo may be running out of time. The article compares it to the old Commodore Amiga, which was certainly cool, but way ahead of its time. I think part of the problem with TiVo is the pricing. While they’ve done a good job bundling and subsidizing the hardware on the satallite versions, most people don’t have satellite TV – and it’s a big disconnect to convince them to switch. But, on the cable versions of TiVo, they seem to be trying to recoup their box costs and charging for the monthly service. The combined charges are way too high for mass acceptance. If the real money is in the service fees, then they should just subsidize the boxes, and try to sign up more customers for the service.