Comcast's new DVR? 'Like a 1972 Gran Torino'
You know the old saying about two hunters chased by a bear? One sees a bear and takes off at a fast clip. The other says, "You'll never be able to outrun a bear!" And the first one replies, "I don't have to outrun the bear, I have to outrun you!"

That pretty much sums up TiVo's situation these days. Sure, the device is expensive, and people don't like its new remote control. But all TiVo has to do to win the DVRs war is suck less than the competition. Comcast, for one, appears to be making that incredibly easy for TiVo. John Battelle, author of "The Search" and a contributor to Business 2.0, writes a vitriolic report on how awful Comcast's high-def DVR is.

How does Battelle define awful?
"... the damn thing is slow - beyond unresponsive. There's no way you can accurately predict where and when the thing might stop and start when you are fast forwarding or rewinding. The Tivo is like an Audi, but the Comcast drives like a 1972 Gran Torino Station wagon. And the remote? My God, what a piece of sh*t!"

Battelle says he's going to dump his Comcast DVR for a new TiVo HD box. Of course, he could just wait for Comcast's upcoming TiVo-powered DVR. But from the sounds of things, Battelle can't bear to wait.
Posted by Owen Thomas 11:37 AM 4 Comments comment | Add a Comment

I love my Comcast DVR and suggest perhaps he calls Comcast and requests a replacement if he is having that much problem or perhaps slow down - there are FF and rewinds that may be too fast for your reaction time. I've had ours for about a year and no complaints. I've never used Tivo but don't see the need.
Posted By M. Smith Devon, PA : 6:14 PM  

I fully agree with the Owen's comments. I used to have a Cox DVR and it worked great. My Comcast DVR has some quirks, such as if I record one show, and want to watch another (box has 2 tuners), then there is no sound on the other channel!?! This also means that if I'm recording something, I cannot playback something previously recorded, with sound that is.
Posted By Kim Schulze, Los Angeles, CA : 12:24 PM  

All I can say is he is right, and they know it thus the deal with Tivo. Its a shame that Comcast does not care about their customers, as they would haver put out an abomination like this. Ask time warner they have been using DVR's that are NOT Tivo's but perfectly usable, due to the fact that they are running on better software, which means that there was an actual evaluating and testing process involved instead of somebody's golf course deal that screwed all their subscribers. Its ironic that people who have never used anything else, don't think comcast is that bad, but to me they are kind of like a someone who comes from an impoverished nation, and moves to the US to live in a ghetto; they are just happy to have indoor plumbing. Catch my drift, anyway thanks for the column it was awesome, more people need to say something.
Posted By Jay, Los Angeles, California : 12:40 PM  

The DirecTV DVR sounds very similar. Not even a slow mo button. It's as if their programmers never used the product.
Posted By D Johnson Albany, GA : 8:57 AM  

To send a letter to the editor about The Browser, click hereTop of page

Got a news tip? Send it to The Browser