Combining Web and channel surfing may sound like a dream to dedicated couch potatoes, but new technology that allows the two to mix is a nightmare for media companies.
There is a brouhaha brewing over technology that would allow people with digital video recorders like TiVo to “tape” programs and send them — almost immediately — over the Internet to other TiVo machines. Entertainment companies say this could throw a wrench into their marketing strategy and encourage piracy.
The conflict stems, in part, from recent Federal Communications Commissions regulations that give the green light to some companies putting TV content on the Net.
One such new service is TiVoGuard, which would allow TiVo customers to beam their recorded programs to other TiVo machines in different locations. So a “Will & Grace” fan could transfer the Thursday night show to his weekend home and watch it on Saturday instead. (COOL!)
And with rumors circulating that TiVo and online DVD renter NetFlix are negotiating a deal to allow subscribers to download movies to their TiVo boxes, it looks like in the future the Internet will be the homestead of TV rather than the frontier. (More)