Friday, April 22, 2011

TiVo is Great!

Now that we have used out TiVo for three months, it has become an integral part of our TV viewing experience. It is a great supplement for over the air broadcast TV. The ability to watch programs at more convenient times and to access streaming content are key features.

My wife is not comfortable with a lot of technology, and she can use the TiVo for what she needs without any problem. She even said last night that she would like a TiVo box for our TV in out bedroom.

Our six year old grandson has a TiVo at home and is a whiz with it - of course.

Vudu vs. Netflix updated

The performance of both Vudu and Netflix streaming has improved with the installation of powerline Ethernet. You make an explicit choice of quality with Vudu and pay more for higher quality. However, it is difficult (or not possible) to downgrade to a lower quality, once a higher level of quality has been selected.

Netflix tests your link at the beginning of each film and sends you the best quality that it believes that you can support. It is automatic and will back down automatically if the link degrades while streaming.

I like the Netflix approach best. However, I think that Vudu generally provides better video quality. However, Netflix is certainly good enough and I would not choose to buy a Vudu film rather than watching it on Netflix. I would watch Vudu only if content I wanted to see was not available from Netflix.

Replacement VBR231 Blue Ray Player Arrived

After three weeks, I received a replacement VBR231. It works well. The Powerline Ethernet really improves the quality of streaming compared to WiFi in my home. I was able to watch Vudu content with 720p HD. Vudu said that its 1080p service would work for me, but that did not proved to be the case in operation. 720p is a big upgrade over SD.