Last month, TiVo finally dropped the hammer on its original DVR, the Series 1, by announcing that it would no longer receive program guide updates after September. To make up for that, the company has a new model on the way, currently known as the TiVo Mantis, though how it works varies from the DVRs the company is known for.
The existence of the TiVo Mantis was revealed by an FCC filing, which was first noticed by Zatz Not Funny. The filing gives the device the model number TCD84A000, while it isn’t clear if Mantis is a work-in-progress name or the actual name of the product. While the unit works similarly to previous TiVo models in that it receives and records OTA (over-the-air) broadcast television, how it is delivered is a different story.
Looking at the filing, the Mantis appears to lack any sort of video output, which makes sense as it is described as a network DVR. The filing reads the this DVR is “designed to receive OTA broadcast video and transcodes and send it out as a network stream either wired or wireless,” and is equipped with 802.11ac Wi-Fi.
This means that users will need another device to actually handle playback, but also carries the added benefit that one DVR can stream to multiple TVs. TiVo offers its own TiVo Mini, which is almost surely going to work with this upcoming network DVR, but the company is also likely working on apps for popular streamers from Roku, Amazon, Apple, and maybe more.
In the past, TiVo representatives have mentioned the company working toward something that moves away from the traditional DVR model, and this could be it, but this is far from clear. In a recent chat with users of the TiVo Community Forum, company retail general manager Ira Bahr said that the company does “expect to announce something around CES in January,” adding that the company won’t try to compete directly with streamers.
In the same message board thread, Bahr also told users to stay tuned for a TiVo announcement on September 15, so it’s possible that we could learn more about the Mantis sooner rather than later.