Digital video recorder (DVR) manufacturer TiVo recently unveiled a mobile app for Android that allows users to stream TV content on their smartphones, tablets, and other handheld devices.
By introducing this Android app, TiVo has added a service that is similar to what it offered for Apple devices. Almost a year ago, the company had previously made the app available for devices that run on iOS, the mobile operating system developed by Apple.
For now, the new TiVo app is initially being rolled out in the United States. Consumers who own handsets that run on Android, Google's mobile operating system, can connect to their TiVO set-top box at home and be able to view, record, and playback their favorite TV shows on their smartphones or tablets. The TiVo app is also capable of connecting with wireless networks as well as Wi-Fi. This is certainly a plus for Android users considering that the Apple app can only connect to Wi-Fi.
In an effort to gain more subscribers outside the US market, TiVo is planning to offer its Apple and Android app to international users as well. By the end of this year's second quarter, the California-based company has amassed a total of 4.8 million subscribers, of which 3 million are in European countries. TiVo has stated that it will deploy more workers in five European countries as it expands its operations in the continent.
As for Android users, they will finally be able to stream TV shows from networks such as CBS or Time Warner on their handsets, at the same time get information on what programs are available from web-based providers such as Netflix or Amazon.
However, not all TV content will be available for streaming for both apps outside the home. Content owners like HBO or Starz may impose restrictions on their premium programs, preventing them from being viewed on users' mobile devices. The challenge now is to get pay-TV providers to make their content more available for remote viewers, i.e. people who like to stream content through their mobile devices.
The TiVo app for Android also has some features that users should find interesting. For instance, with just a tap, users can open up background information on the cast and crew of the TV shows they are streaming. Also, if users want to switch from Android handsets to their TV sets, they can just tap the app. Lastly, with the use of the app, users can turn their Android devices into the next-gen remote control for their TiVo Roamio DVR.
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