OK, I wrote this and then I opened the original post in a new tab, planning to cut & paste this there as well, only to see it was posted FEBRUARY 11, 2005! Why is a post that is over three years old, and VERY out of date, being re-posted here as *NEW* with today's date on it? That's terrible!
If you're going to slam TiVo, at least *try* to get your facts correct.
Can TiVo show a static ad while fast forwarding over a commercial? Yes. But very, very few ads are flagged for this. And really, you have to be pretty unstable for this to bug you. You're fast-forwarding over a commercial for Pepsi and you see a quick static image ad for Pepsi. Oh my god! The world is ending!
And you're got a number of things just wrong:
Besides, can you browse the internet on Tivo? No!
No, I'll give you that.
Can you check email on Tivo? No!
Yes. There are HME applications that will allow you to see your email on the TV via TiVo.
Can you have a slideshow of all your pictures on the TV? No!
Yes. TiVo has had photo viewing built in for YEARS. You can view photos from a PC on your LAN, or you can access sites like Picasa and Photobucket. Standard.
Can you stream your favorite Internet radio station on Tivo? No!
Yes - if they're in MP3 format.
Can you skip past commercials with no ads? No!
Yes. 30-second skip. You don't even get the static ads while FF that seem to bother you.
Can you play MP3s on your Tivo? No!
Yes. Again, TiVo has had MP3 playback for YEARS. Stream MP3s from a PC on your LAN. TiVo also has built-in support for Live365.com and Rhapsody built-in. And HME apps for other music sites are available.
Can you play Half Life2 on your huge 65" TV via Tivo? No!
Can I have a videoconference on your TV using Xten or inititiate a VoIP call using Skype?
All of these things CAN be done with a MCE 2005 PC. Case closed!
Case not so closed.
Can the MCE PC natively record digital cable channels? Not if you build it yourself. CableCARD tuners are only available in specific, expensive pre-built MCE models. CC tuners are not available to home builders, or in less expensive MCE models. And that is a problem recording HD content - HD capture systems that can capture from component are only now showing up for PCs, and they're expensive. So you have to add at least $300 *per tuner*, PLUS the cost of a cable box rental *per tuner*. And you have more boxes, more cabling, and the *joy* of IR blaster control. Or you can get a TiVo HD for ~$230, lifetime service for $399, and have dual tuner capability for analog and digital antenna and cable, SD & HD with not more fees.
TiVo is arguably a better DVR than MCE with the options available with Season Passes and Wish Lists. But it goes further. TiVo, as above, can show your photos and play your music. You can transfer video from the TiVo to a PC - and from a PC to the TiVo. TiVo has built-in support for Amazon Unbox, Live365, Rhapsody, Picasa, Photobucket, Music Choice, Yahoo Weather, Yahoo Traffic, One True Media, Fandango, and more. There's also TiVoCast and TiVo Web Video. Coming soon YouTube, Jaman.com and CinemaNow will also be natively supported. There are 3rd party sites like Apps.tv and PlayTeeVee.com with more content for TiVo. All with TiVo's solid UI and controllable from a simple remote.
So it isn't like TiVo is just a single purpose box and MCE is somehow vastly better. MCE is a fine solution, and it should stand on its own merits without having to erroneously slam TiVo to try to make MCE look better. It just looks ignorant when you state TiVo can't do things that it has done for years and you'd know if you so much as loaded TiVo.com once.
TiVo Series3, Pioneer DVR-810H, Toshiba RS-TX20