ReplayTV is a brand of digital video recorder (DVR), a term synonymous with personal video recorder (PVR). It is a consumer video device which allows users to capture television programming to internal hard disk storage for later viewing (sometimes called time shifting). more...
ReplayTV was founded in 1997 and purchased by SONICblue in 2001. On March 23, 2003 SONICblue filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, and on April 16 sold most of its assets, including ReplayTV, to the Japanese electronics giant D&M Holdings.
ReplayTV service is only available in the United States due to its subscription program. Through the subscription service, searchable program guides are downloaded to the ReplayTV unit nightly. Older units accomplish this download via a dial-up connection. Newer units are also capable of downloading program guides via the user's existing internet connection (broadband or DSL), as well as via the dial-up connection.
Like other PVRs, ReplayTV allows the users to record television programs. The subscription service is operated on a monthly fee, or one time payment, lifetime subscription. Each individual unit requires a separate subscription. Older units, like the 2000 and 3000 series, did not require subscription fees.
Hardware and features
The "5000 Series" ReplayTV units have ethernet connections that allow the user to stream shows to another similar ReplayTV unit within the same local network, transfer shows to another similar ReplayTV unit (either on the local network or across the internet) or to a personal computer. This capability enables the users to move recorded programs to PCs using third-party programs such as DVArchive. These units also have the capability to automatically skip commercial advertisements during playback. Recording of television programs can be accomplished either manually, or through use of the program guide.
The most recent "5500 Series" ReplayTV units still have the ability to stream shows to another similar ReplayTV unit within the same local network, but can no longer transfer shows to other ReplayTV units across the internet. The "5500 Series" units have also had the automatic commercial advance feature removed in favor of a manual "Show|Nav" feature. The units are otherwise identical to the "5000 Series" units.
Below are current 2005 products with list prices: (discounted prices from retailers or ReplayTV's own online store are commonly available)
- ReplayTV RTV5540 40-Hour Digital Video Recorder ($149.99)
- ReplayTV RTV5580 80-Hour Digital Video Recorder ($299.99)
- ReplayTV RTV5516 160-Hour Digital Video Recorder ($449.99)
- ReplayTV RTV5532 320-Hour Digital Video Recorder ($799.99)
On December 19th, 2005, Digital Networks North America announced that is exiting the hardware business as soon as current inventory is sold out. ReplayTV will then concentrate on PC software sales of its DVR technology in a partnership with Hauppauge Computer Works, a manufacturer of Television cards for PC's.
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