Sunday, October 02, 2005

Tivo Thoughts

Prediction/crazy business idea time... This time, the idea relates to Tivo and I have two thoughts.

First, my thoughts are predicated on two fundamental princaples.

(1) All air time is not equal. If you want to buy 30 minutes on Fox at 7:00pm on Thursday night it'll be a heck of a lot more expensive than 30 minutes on G4 at 3:30am on Monday morning.

(2) Tivo users record a show, not a timeslot. I don't care when House or According to Jim come on, or what channel they are on. I just know that I asked Tivo to record them and it did.

Second, here are some definitions.

Viewer Friendly Timeslot (vft) - a timeslot at a time that is convenient for a viewer. Meaning the time is ideal and the channel is one they frequent.

Tivo Friendly Timespot (tft) - a timeslot that does not conflict with any other shows the viewer is interested in.

So here are my ideas.

Collision Protection - Lets say House and Bones are on at the same time on Tuesday night (sorry if that's a bad example, but you get the idea). The average Tivo user doesn't have many options as you can only record one show at a time. Unless of course the networks buy collison protection. They simply run the show in both a VFT and TFT timeslot. This means that even if they lose the primetime viewer to say House, Bones still can recorded and watched at some point.

I guess a lot reality TV shows do this already, but you would think this would be more common, as it should be pretty cheap to buy a TFT.

Tivo Only Shows - I could imagine that a show be presented in only a TFT. Yes, this does not make sense for all shows. However, I could imagine that Tech TV, or Sci-Fi programs could go this route. This also makes lots of sense if the TV showing is just thought of as a distribution mechanism. If you have a website that promotes the show and provides bit-torrents, then the TV just becomes one more way for folks to hear your message, versus being *the* way they hear your message.

With the price of TFT perhaps shows that would never have made it to the little screen would have a chance. Maybe a bunch of video-bloggers should get together, buy some cheap air time, and prove my point?

Too bad I have a face for radio, or maybe I'd do it myself...


1 comment:

  1. Anonymous12:26 AM

    Ah, the joy of DirecTivo -- I can record two shows at once or record one while I'm watching the other. Quality is also better because the already compressed satellite stream is sent directly to the disk and does not require recompression. This means that the recorded quality is identical to the original broadcast quality. A traditional Tivo has to do an analog to digital conversion with lossy compression.