Comcastic TiVos Ready for Friendlies

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Comcast and TiVo have announced that the first non-Comcast employees have begun receiving the TiVo-based DVRs in New England.

This moves the ball down the field after some recent delays, although it appears this phase of the deployment is still limited to "friendlies." That’s a term in the industry that refers to people who can be counted on for providing helpful feedback if something goes wrong, rather than, say, creating an angry Web site whining about their experience.

One guy hoping to get his Comcast/TiVo box soon is industry analyst Will Richmond of Broadband Directions. He received his official invitation for the Comcast TiVo beta last Friday after requesting a test unit from Kevin Casey, president of Comcast’s Northern Division. Richmond wrote me in an e-mail on Wednesday that he expects to get the box shortly.

Richmond promises to post updates on what he finds after he gets the box. He has high hopes for TiVo’s cable play on this front, which he believes will mark a turning point for the company: "If it works as advertised it’s going to be a killer device."

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