As I’d suspected, TiVo support for YouTube is indeed hidden within the 9.4 software update. Series 3 and TiVo HD subscribers should start seeing the application show up as early as tomorrow (Thursday), though the rollout will be completed over the next few weeks. And in some form of meta-irony, I’ve shot a brief video of YouTube on TiVo… on YouTube. For good measure, I also brought up the new SDV Tuning Adapter and TCP Remote screens on my Series3.
I’ve confirmed the YouTube content is indeed H.264 – thus marking the first time TiVo is rendering anything other than MPEG-2. (And why Series2 customers are out of luck – sorry, your hardware doesn’t support additional codecs.) In pressing TiVo on the issue of codecs, I also learned the forthcoming CinemaNow movie rentals will be provided (to both Series2 and Series3/TiVoHD units) as MPEG-2.
I can’t say I’m a huge YouTube fan (and I don’t like Mentos), but I’m impressed with the breadth of this app and the seamless playback. However, what I’d really like to see them do with the new H.264 capabilities is provide access to a much larger library of video podcasts without requiring TiVo Desktop Windows PC transcoding or TiVo to broker indivudal content deals before providing server-side transcoding. I know I’m not the only one waiting for Tekzilla…
Expect TiVo’s YouTube press release tomorrow AM, which is also when the tivo.com/youtube informational page will be activated.