So I know you’ve all been wondering about the Tivo.
Here’s a background on me and TV. I watched a decent amount of TV growing up. My fave shows were The Cosby Show, Kids Incorporated, MMC (The New Mickey Mouse Club), Out of This World, Hey Dude, Clarissa Explains It All, Full House, Family Matters, and of course Saved By the Bell. There were many others, but those are some of my favorites off the top of my head. I had to give you a chance to remember how fun those shows were back in the day. 😉 When I left for college I stopped watching TV almost completely. I went to a school that didn’t allow televisions in the dorm rooms. There were little lounges in the dorms where you could watch TV, and I didn’t spend much time in them. I could always think of a million other things I should be doing instead of watching TV. There was one show that I watched once a week for a couple of years in the end lounge, and that was Felicity. Mom had told me about it and I watched it and got hooked. It was perfect because it was about a girl who leaves home for college, and it starred Kerri Russel, who I knew from watching on MMC. This was also my first J.J. Abrams show (he also created Lost). My junior and senior years of college I lived in apartments that had tvs, but I didn’t find time to watch much. I usually had other roommates who spent more time in front of it.
After college I mostly watched syndicated TV late at night, because I was either working, on the Internet, or out. I had cable for about a year, and this is when I started watching syndicated Law & Order:SVU and CSI: Crime Scene Investigation with one of my roommates. I also remember watching some shows on BBC America. But once I met Trevor I really started to watch TV again. When I met him he lived in a house full of guys that were always watching TV and movies. Of course they had to have the ultimate cable package. That is how one day I stumbled upon one of my favorite shows, Veronica Mars. When we got married we just kept the cable package and kept watching the shows, eventually upgrading to DVR and HD channels. With DVR I could watch way more shows that ever before. Now I could just set a bunch of shows to record and watched whenever I had the time. This is when I started to pay attention to TV schedules and what all the new shows were and started reading TV blogs. I liked that i could record a bunch of new shows and then stop recording them if they weren’t any good. Our way of watching TV changed completely. We would record shows and watch them when we felt like it, and otherwise we would just turn on HGTV or something like that.
For the past couple of years we have talked about canceling cable. It was hard for me to imagine it after the past few years of having it! I kept trying to put it off. Once many of the channels had digital signals and the same quality as the HD channels there really was no excuse. What I had really been not wanting to give up was the DVR. After seeing a couple different friends on facebook talk about giving up cable, I finally gave in. We found the perfect solution! Tivo! I made a list of all of the shows we were recording on our DVR, and realized that most of them were on network TV. The ones that were on cable were simply not worth the extra money we were paying for them. Last month we went to Best Buy and bought a TV antenna for $11 and a couple of HD Tivo boxes on sale (talk about good timing). The monthly fee to use it is about $13. We set everything up and wished we had done it a long time ago!
With Tivo we can still pause, rewind, fast-forward live TV. We can set individual shows to record or set up season passes to record all episodes. There are many more ways to search for shows with Tivo, including categories and keywords. That would have come in a lot more handy with cable, I admit. We still have a Guide with all the channels and shows on live TV and have more options for how we want to view it, and the guide gives us episode info up to two weeks ahead. With Tivo we can also schedule recordings from our computer, and even transfer recordings from one box to the other! We have one set up in our living room and one set up in the bedroom. I can record something on the tv in the living room and then decide to watch it in the bedroom while I put laundry away. It’s fantastic. 🙂 Also, we still have access to an on-demand service like we did with cable, which is nice if we ever want to use it. What we really love is that we can access Netflix through our Tivo. So now instead of putting on HGTV when there’s nothing else we want to watch, we just start up a tv episode from our Netflix Instant Queue. There’s still a lot that we are figuring out as we are using it. I’m sure it’s capable of much more. For example it has something called Kidz Zone, and you can set up the Tivo so that your kids can only watch shows you have approved.
When we first set up Tivo Cash was afraid of the noises it made so he would hide or come sit in our laps. It was pretty funny. Poor little dog. Trev changed the options so that there wouldn’t be noises anymore so that we wouldn’t have to deal with that anymore. Haha.
Anyway, canceling cable and getting Tivo is saving us over $125 a month! I can still watch TV when it is convenient for me. This is getting pretty long, so I’ll have to save the TV shows I’m watching these days for another entry. Do any of you have Tivo? Any tips for me?