TiVo Inc. was an American corporation whose primary product was the marketing and subscription services for its TiVo branded digital video recorder. TiVo primarily operated in the United States, but also operated in Australia, Canada, Mexico, New Zealand, Puerto Rico, Taiwan, the United Kingdom, and Western Europe. On September 8, 2016, TiVo Inc. was acquired by Rovi Corporation. The new entity became known as TiVo Corporation.
TiVo Inc. was incorporated on August 4, 1997 as "Teleworld, Inc." by Jim Barton and Mike Ramsay, veterans of Silicon Graphics and Time Warner's Full Service Network digital video system. Originally intending to create a home network device, they later developed the idea to record digitized video on a hard disk.
Teleworld began the first public trials of the TiVo device and service in late 1998 in the San Francisco Bay area. After exhibiting at the Consumer Electronics Show in January 1999, Mike Ramsay announced to the company that the first version of the TiVo digital video recorder would ship on March 31, 1999, despite an estimated four to five months of work remaining to complete the device.
Teleworld, Inc. renamed themselves to TiVo Inc. on July 21, 1999. TiVo Inc. made its IPO (Initial Public Offering) on September 30, 1999. Its first profitable quarter was the second quarter of 2005.
The original TiVo device digitized and compressed analog video from any source (antenna, cable or direct broadcast satellite). In late 2000, Philips Electronics introduced the DSR6000, the first DirecTV receiver with an integrated TiVo DVR. This new device, nicknamed the DirecTiVo, stored digital signals sent from DirecTV directly onto a hard disk.
In early 2000, TiVo partnered with electronics manufacturer Thomson and broadcaster British Sky Broadcasting to deliver the TiVo service in the UK market. This partnership resulted in the Thomson PVR10UK, a stand-alone receiver released in October 2000. In January 2003, After poor sales, TiVo pulled out of the UK market, officially their manufacturing contract expired, however it was more likely because Sky, who were the exclusive distributor of TiVo in the UK, launched their own TiVo-like DVR product called Sky+ which they heavily promoted to their customers. Sky+ is still the dominant DVR product in the UK with 5,005,000 customers using Sky+ HD service in 2013.
In June 2005, veteran media executive Tom Rogers was named president and chief executive officer of TiVo Inc. Rogers, a TiVo board member since 2003, took the reins from TiVo co-founder Mike Ramsay. Under Rogers' leadership, TiVo has transformed itself from just a DVR into a complete in-home broadcast, cable and broadband media hub and an ally to the traditional media businesses with its innovative ad solutions and television measurement services.
In 2006, TiVo, Inc. won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Innovation and Achievement in Advanced Media Technology.
TiVo was again awarded an Emmy in 2013 for Technical and Engineering Achievement for Personalized Recommendation Engines for Video Discovery.
On April 29, 2016, Rovi announced that it had acquired TiVo Inc. for $1.1 billion. It was further announced that the combined company would operate under the TiVo brand, and would hold over 6,000 pending and registered patents. Rovi indicated that it planned to discontinue in-house hardware production, and would focus primarily on licensing its technologies and the TiVo brand to third-party companies.
On September 8, 2016, the acquisition by Rovi Corporation was completed.
On January 27, 2004, TiVo announced the acquisition of Strangeberry Inc., a small Palo Alto based technology company specializing in using home network and broadband technologies to create new entertainment experiences on television
On July 17, 2012, TiVo announced the acquisition of TRA, Inc., an audience measurement company that measures advertising effectiveness. Renamed TiVo Research and Analytics, the service now matches television exposures from 1.5 million TV homes with actual purchase transactions to determine the effectiveness of TV advertising.
On January 29, 2014, TiVo announced the acquisition of Digitalsmiths, a cloud-based content discovery and recommendation service for Pay-TV.
On November 25, 2009, TiVo re-entered the UK market by announcing a partnership with UK cable company Virgin Media to become the exclusive provider of Set Top Box middleware and user inferface software for Virgin Media's next generation television platform. On November 3, 2010 Virgin Media announced the launch of their first PVR running TiVo software, available in 500GB or 1TB configurations.
By 2012, TiVo services had become a part of 18% of Virgin's TV customer base. By the end of 2013, TiVo was installed in 2 million (52%) of all Virgin TV's subscribers. In September 2013, Vigin Media became the first pay-TV provider to provide Netflix streaming services, which were integrated into Virgin's service through TiVo set-top boxes.
As of January 2014, TiVo reported having relationships with 18 of the top 25 U.S. operators. All Comcast Xfinity customers using retail TiVo devices have access to Xfinity On Demand. Smaller cable companies in the U.S. and Canada offer TiVo DVRs and TiVo Mini extenders directly to their paid TV customers. These companies include: Atlantic Broadband, Astound Broadband, Blue Ridge Communications, Cable One, GCI, Mediacom, Midcontinent Communications, RCN, Suddenlink, and Wave Broadband.
In 2004, TiVo sued EchoStar Corp, a manufacturer of DVR units, for patent infringement. The parties reached a settlement in 2011 wherein EchoStar paid TiVo a licensing fee for its technology.
On January 19, 2010, Microsoft filed a lawsuit against TiVo, Inc. for patent infringement. Both companies agreed to end their lawsuits in March 2012.