Everyone has dreamt of fast forwarding through the commercialswhen watching live TV - well, now we can with the first wave ofcustomisable television services.
ReplayTV is a personal television service that enables viewers to stop, rewind, and fast-forward live TV. The box also downloads TV listings via the telephone and enables customers to build a channel guide that ensures favourite programmes are recorded automatically.
The intelligent Replay TV box will shut down if someone picks up the phone accidentally and it will not interrupt a call if the line is in use.
Keywords can be entered as a theme, gardening programmes for example, and the service will tag matching shows to ensure that viewers don't miss out on any associated programmes.
The ReplayTV box, which started shipping at the beginning of this month, uses a Quantum drive that stores video in MPEG-2 format. It is capable of storing around 20 hours of programmes.
Unfortunately the ReplayTV box is currently only available in the US and is selling for around $700 to early adopters, according to industry watchers. Competitor TiVo has a similar service on offer in the US that starts at $500 plus a $10 monthly subscription fee. Tivio recently licensed its software to Sony for inclusion in future devices.
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