Tivo now sucks in the UK and is just a Sky+ box. Boo.

Post updated at the end!

I have Tivo – if you’re not familiar with it, it was an early version of a Sky+ box which launched in the UK about five or six years ago. The main difference between Tivo and a Sky+ box is that Tivo learns over time what kind of programmes you like and will record suggestions according to your tastes.

That to me has been brilliant – even though the hard drive is only 40GB, it’s kept me using Tivo as boxes like Sky+ and Virgin Media’s V+ box have come out. If I’d watched all the programmes I’d series linked or selected to record, I’d just go through the selections until I found something I wanted to watch.

Tivo pulled out of the UK about a year or so after launch, as it seemed like the idea was just too ahead of its time for UK consumers. They’ve continued to supply EPGs to Tivo boxes though, so they’ve still been functioning 100%. Until recently.

In August, my Tivo stopped recording suggested programmes. That was fine, as I’d been on holiday and had loads of stuff to catch up on anyway, but this week I was ready to start viewing suggested programmes again. (Erm usually stuff like The FBI Files, Cold Case Files, Judge Judy – you get my drift). But suggestions have never returned.

And, it appears they never will. An update with programme IDs means they now have 14 numbers, which UK Tivo boxes can’t understand, so they now can’t record suggestions. And they’re not going to fix it for UK boxes (or can’t). This sucks big time. And no, you can’t buy a Tivo box in the US and bring it back here either, as it won’t work. Even though they have super duper versions that can be controlled over the Internet, connect to YouTube etc.

So I’m stuck paying 10 a month now for what is basically just a hard disk recorder with no added Tivo benefits. I’m not sure what I’ll do now – but I really miss my suggestions. What I really want as well is a brand new Tivo box with all the US features, but it doesn’t look like they’re going to launch again anytime here soon (although they have recently launched in Australia).

Update: Well thank goodness, some people did a lot of hard work and suggestions are now working again. Hooray! Now all we need is a new Tivo box that can handle HD! But this’ll do great in the meantime, I’m glad my suggestions are back!

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