Exclusive by Patrick Avenell
SYDNEY: Hybrid Television Services, the exclusive Australian distributor of TiVo, is enduring a bad week of publicity, with the news that the long-awaited ISP connectivity will not cost the “tens of dollars” promised, but around 10 times that amount.
Hybrid TV CEO Robbee Minicola released this information to the Fairfax press on 10 March, telling the Sydney Morning Herald that users can subscribe to the TiVo service, which will include the set top box, a modem and an adaptor for between $79 and $99 per month for 24 months. In total, customers are looking at around $2,400 for two years of TiVo, which is around the same amount you would pay for two years of Foxtel’s best channel package.
Today Current.com.au can reveal that TiVo’s tactics do not just include misleading consumers, retailers are also being hurt by Hybrid’s new policies.
In order to steal purchases away from retailers, Hybrid TV is now offering new payment plans on its websites. Under the new terms of these plans, consumers can receive a TiVo device with no upfront payment. And, in an amazing show of hypocrisy, the TiVo website is currently running banner ads that read: “Buy online now and pay in 10 in$talments,” followed by, “We [heart] our retailers!”.
Current.com.au contacted Hybrid TV, and its media representatives, for contribution to this story.