As more and more Americans cut the cable cord, a battle is brewing for their loyalties.
Tivo, which pioneered the DVR revolution but has fallen back in the pack, has introduced the Tivo Bolt OTA, a new system capable of recording four programs at once from an over-the-air antenna. The Bolt OTA, which won’t work with cable subscriptions, will store up to 150 hours of HD programming. (The device is also 4K Ultra High Definition capable, though no OTA signals are in 4K yet.)
The device will cost $250 and come with a $7 monthly service fee (versus the standard $15 service plan for other Tivo devices). Like all Tivo devices, users will be able to skip through commercials.
Tivo sees tremendous potential in cord cutters, saying its internal research estimates 25% of the general pay-TV audience is considering canceling their subscription. And while other companies might have different estimates, they don’t disagree with the premise.
Amazon, in September, unveiled the Fire TV Recast, a DVR device for cord-cutters that will be released on Nov. 14 for between $230 and $280, with no monthly charge. That system will stream recordings to their Echo Show devices and can control the system with the Alexa smart assistant.
“We’ve seen growing demand for our over-the-air products, and BOLT OTA is a major upgrade that will continue to keep TiVo at the forefront of the market,” said Ted Malone, vice president of consumer products and services at Tivo.
Beyond over the air programming, Bolt TV owners can also access several streaming services, such as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime.