TiVo debuts next-generation DVR, the Bolt; aggressively touts commercial-skipping tools, 4K capabilities

TiVo has formally announced its next generation DVR set-top, the Bolt, a device that includes robust commercial-skipping tools, an interface that blends OTT and linear programming options, and 4K capabilities. 

"The TiVo Bolt arrives at a time of piqued interest in both connected devices and commercial avoidance," said Tom Rogers, TiVo's president and CEO. "The clear demand of consumers is for a TV experience that quickly delivers them exactly what they want the instant they turn on the screen. Bolt is a game changer that will remind people of how they felt the first time they experienced digital recording."

Featuring a CableCard option, TiVo is touting the device as a money-saver for pay-TV consumers -- "particularly as a household with multiple TVs, by getting out from under the rental charges of boxes from your cable operator."

It's also boldly promoting the the "SkipMode" feature, which TiVo says allows 30 percent faster viewing of recorded shows "while maintaining perfect audio."

The new device includes TiVo's OnePass search feature, as well as a new form factor.

Priced at $299 for 500GB models and $399 for devices with 1 terabyte hard drives -- with a full free year of $14.99-a-month DVR service thrown in -- the Bolt is not, as reported by some tech bloggers, a "replacement" for the incumbent Roamio model. 

"It will stand alongside Roamio, but can be considered an upgrade to Roamio S and OTA models," said TiVo rep Dani Siemon to FierceCable.

Certainly, the Roamio has been a stalwart performer for TiVo, which has used the device to capture a dominant share of the set-top market for smaller and mid-tier cable operators both in the U.S. and abroad. 

"Bolt was designed to meet the requirements of a new generation of TV viewers," said Ira Bahr, TiVo's chief marketing and retail sales officer. "Smaller form factor, 4K compatibility, single-screen integration of cable or over-the-air, plus streaming apps, the ability to take your content anywhere -- and for the first time, the ability to precisely jump commercial breaks at the touch of a button."

For more:
- read this TiVo press release

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