Walking past the TiVo booth at press events has been a little painful for a while now. They were always touting a new partnership or somethingl like that, but the same, increadingly old hardware still sat there on the table. But now we're officially in the Series 4. Both of the new Premiere models use TiVo's new architecture, which should feel very familiar to TiVo users, but brings with it some key improvements like full widescreen capability, which essentially doubles the amount of useful info on the screen.
One area where the new TiVo beats the pants off of its predecessor is in its web capabilities. The Swivel Search function lets you scour the web for info about your favorite programming and actors. The results point you toward pertinent media that's as far reaching as video on-demand services like Netflix streaming and Amazon Unbox. The whole UI is based on Adobe Flash and offers a much-appreciated disk space meter.
As I mentioned before, there are two different models, including the standard Premiere and the XL version. The normal box will hold up to 45 hours of HD content and 400 hours of SD, while the XL more than triples those numbers, with space for 150 hours of HD and 1350 hours of SD content. In addition to the extra space, the XL also ships with a badge deeming it THX certified and comes complete with the THX Optimizer calibration utilitiy built right in.
Both boxes are available for pre-order today with the Premiere checking in at $299 and the XL demanding $499. Both are compatible with their new QWERTY Bluetooth remote, which is slated to hit later this year. Unfortunately, wireless networking capability will cost an extra $90 (double boo!) in the form of the the wireless N dongle that will be out in May. Of course, with access to all that HD content, it seems like kind of a waste to try and send it over WiFi anyway.
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