Switching to Tivo?
Up until recently, I haven't cared about owning a Tivo. I really like Windows Media Center Edition as a television platform. When I needed to record HD cable shows, DVR functionality on my Comcast box was acceptable. But that changed when Comcast dumped their Microsoft Enhanced guide for something they built internally. It's not that I was in love with the old Comcast UI; the MS Enhanced guide was definitely slower scrolling than the new Comcast stuff. Fact is, the Microsoft stuff was more reliable, especially for DVR functionality.
A lousy guide experience isn't the only reason I'm thinking of making a switch. I also like the integration between Amazon Unbox, which has become my favorite way to watch movies on the road, and Tivo. While still far from perfect, Amazon Unbox is closer to the perfect video on demand experience than anything else out there right now. When you download movies to your computer, you can play them back with or without an Internet connection either until they expire (if you rent) or forever (if you bought them). Authorization of new machines seems painless. And the fact that you can get a normal TV experience (i.e. no PC involved) using a Tivo when you want to watch in the living room, makes Amazon Unbox a shoe-in for normal people who don't want to deal with the hassle of integrating a PC into their home entertainment experience.
Combine Amazon Unbox, a lousy cable guide, and the new Tivo HD DVR's support for CableCard as a complete replacement for my cable box and I'm ready to make the leap. Tivo's guide, while criticized for being a bit slower in the new HD boxes, is a thing of beauty. Tivo is easy to navigate. Tivo is easy to configure for recordings. And if I want to take my Tivo recorded shows with me, Roxio comes in handy for burning Tivo files or converting them for any device using MyTV ToGo.
What are you using as your DVR? Your portable video watching experience? Should I go Tivo? Or is there something better on the horizon?