TiVo is a name that was once synonymous with the DVR, but despite better than expected sales results from the third quarter of 2009, the once mighty TiVo is losing subscribers in droves.
The third quarter of 2009 was a bit of a mixed bag for TiVo. The press release reads like a 'good news, bad news' scenario. The bad news is that TiVo posted a loss of $6.7 million. The good news? They expected it to be worse.
Of course, the company isn't taking this in stride. In the last year they've made significant investments to expand outside of the US market, including entering New Zealand for the first time. They've teamed up with Virgin Media in the UK, and DirecTV in the US, which has potential to increase their subscriber base by millions.
TiVo is also quick to remind investors and analysts of the recent deal with Best Buy. In return for allowing Best Buy advertisements and branding on their DVRs, TiVo is expected to get a large marketing and sales push from Best Buy starting in early 2010.
According to TiVo's SEC filing, the subscriber base has been steadily declining since the first month of 2007. The last few years have seen a slow shift away from the service, with declines of one or two hundred thousand subscribers a month, but October showed a huge increase of over three hundred thousand subscribers leaving the service. This correlates interestingly with a similarly sharp increase in subscriber rates in October of 2004, which peaked two months later when over six hundred thousand new subscribers joined the service in December.
There have been several new announcements from TiVo recently, including a new keyboard style remote, but thusfar, there's no indication of new DVRs.