Something horrible happened this week… our beloved Tivo Series 2 died (I have been having rotten luck with electronics lately). It seems that a power outage, followed by the power flickering on and off several times might have been the culprit.

Dead Tivo
Dead Tivo

While this is an inconvenience to me, it’s been devastating for my wife, a unabashed television junky. It’s been pretty hard to watch her comes to terms with the loss. After I was informed that the Tivo had been stuck on the startup screen all day. I suggested unplugging it and plugging it back in, but that didn’t help. So Susie called Tivo.

Sue’s progression through the five stages of grief:

Shock/Denial – “The Tivo people said to unplug it and then plug it back and let it run over night. Maybe it will work itself out by then? If not, we have to sent it to Tivo and then they will fix it and sent it back to us”.

Anger – “I can’t believe that we have to send that back to them and wait weeks for it’s return! In the meantime, I’m not getting a service that I’m paying for!”. So she called support and let random support guy know how she felt. Then she proceeded to inform support supervisor guy.

Bargaining – While talking to support supervisor guy she angled for a replacement to be cross shipped in exchange for our dead box. As it seemed that this was going nowhere, she finally blurted out, “Maybe we’ll just switch to Comcast!” and hung up. Alluding to the PVR available from our cable provider.

Depression – The rest of the evening and the following day. Trust me. Though this was mitigated somewhat after I dusted off our original Philips Tivo and hooked it up. Sadly, it has no schedule information, but it’ll do in a pinch.

Acceptance – The plan is to box up our beloved Tivo on Monday, ship it off and hope for the best. None of the alternatives seem very appealing. Comcast’s box and the required digital cable subscription would nearly double our cable bill. Besides, I’ve not heard good things about it’s interface especially when compared to the simplicity of Tivo… though it does record in HD. Buying another Tivo while waiting for this one to be repaired seems silly. And so we wait.

By the way, I’d love to hear from folks that have Comcast’s PVR service. Good? Bad? Ugly? Tivo’s death (the company that is) has long been rumored to be inevitable. They still offer no support for HDTV. So, at some point we will probably have to look for an alternative… maybe I should break down and build a MythTV box?