In 1999, the digital video recorder changed television forever by letting viewers pause live TV, ushering us into a new world of on-demand everything. “TiVo(R)” became a household word.
DVRs radically changed the video and consumer electronics industries, but today, the notion of on-demand programming has become something we take for granted. We expect this sort of functionality across apps like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime. "Game of Thrones" might premiere on a Sunday, but if you miss it (and manage to avoid all the social media spoilers) you can always watch, pause, rewind and fast-forward whenever you want.
So, with on-demand video and the ability to pause TV now part of our daily lives, how can the DVR still be relevant?
Today’s DVRs give you more time, control and ability to discover better content quickly. Sure, most DVRs let you fast-forward, rewind and pause live TV, but modern DVRs also have the ability to speed up your content by 30 percent while maintaining perfect sound quality (say, if you’re watching a particularly slow sports game or awards show). And in a world where several subscription services still force you to watch some commercials, the ability to fast-forward through ads with your DVR is a very good thing. TiVo’s SkipMode(R) enables you to skip most ads at the click of a button, and even set your device to skip those ads automatically. This means if you are recording an over-the-air or network TV show, you can watch it without interruption and get a huge chunk of time back in your day.
A modern DVR lets you access all your content in one place. The best DVRs seamlessly display your favorite programs across live and on-demand TV as well as streaming video services like Hulu or Amazon Prime in a single interface. Although some TV “dongles” offer this, the search results are often incomplete or biased toward whichever content provider the dongle is associated with. With a modern DVR, you have one place (and one remote) to search, manage and discover all of your entertainment. You can set your DVR to record an episode or series of your choosing across channels and apps and have one central place to find it all.
Today’s best DVRs have smart personalization features that can also find the right shows for you. Don’t know what to watch? No problem. A high-end DVR will learn your preferences over time and make suggestions specialized for you. You can also set it to record any movie or TV show that features your favorite actor or director, or your favorite topic.
Modern DVRs now come with mobile and web apps that allow you to watch and program recordings from anywhere. How often do you hear about a show but forget about it later? Problem solved!
If you have a digital TV antenna and your DVR has “OTA” (over-the-air) capabilities, you can record dozens of high-definition shows available to you for free over the airwaves. Some DVRs like the TiVo BOLT(R) are compatible with the highest resolution available, capable of displaying 4K Ultra HD. The quality of the network TV video experience will meet or exceed that of 4K streaming services available today.
And today, many DVRs have advanced features like smart home connectivity and intelligent, natural language voice control. And of course, if you misplace your remote control between the cushions of your couch, the best modern DVRs have a “find-your-remote” button right on the set-top box.
Today’s DVRs do so much more than just pause live TV; they give you back time in your day. You can watch smarter, discover new shows and have complete control over your entertainment. With one seamless interface to search across all apps and video sources, a commercial-less experience, advanced and unbiased search and discovery features, smart home capabilities, voice control, personalized show suggestions, viewing speed functions, Ultra HD, mobile and web viewing and recording, and a single hub to operate from, having a modern DVR in your entertainment center is a clear choice that’s not only relevant today, but will enrich your TV viewing experience for years to come.