I first became aware of Tivo as soon as it was put on the market. I was told about it by someone who took part in the manufacturing of it and all I heard was how amazing it was. Though I listened, I wasn't impressed or interested. A few weeks later, I saw it in action for myself and I was totally amazed. At that time, I didn't fully know what it was capable of doing.
After being shown the basics about it, I began to play around and see how it worked. I selected a few programs that I liked and often recorded on VHS, which was always a pain. I was hesitant to trust this new gadget to find my shows and record them with so little effort on my part. I was in for a wonderful surprise.
I use Tivo just about every day and many days it records several shows. I can't begin to express how much I love Tivo. It has made my life much simpler and I can go out or do other things without worrying about missing a show or game on TV.
Tivo is very simple to use. If a show comes on that you are interested in recording, you just press the record button on the remote. There is nothing to set. Tivo will know how long to record. If you want to record that show every time it's on, you push the record button twice. That's it! Tivo will automatically record that show every time it comes on. You can go into the menu and tell it whether to record first runs only or reruns too. It's that smart.
I have certain people that I love to see on TV, but don't always know when they will be on. I'll use Brad Pitt, for example. I can put his name into a wishlist and every time he's listed to be in a show, Tivo will automatically record that show. Whether he's a guest on David Letterman or one of his movies is on, it's automatically recorded. This is a fantastic feature.
The feature I use the most is "pause", whether it's a regular show I'm watching, something I recorded on Tivo or even a live event. You can pause any of these things. If the phone rings, the dog wants out or I need a snack, I just pause the show and then continue when I get back. It also comes in handy if my husband or I want to say something to the other. Using pause, no one is causing the other to miss anything. You can go backwards also in case you forgot to pause and missed a great play during a game or just want to see something again.
We watch a lot of sports and the only problem I ever had with Tivo (which is not their fault) is when a game runs longer than expected. Tivo is told that it will end at certain time, but sports events often run longer. You can manually set Tivo to record that show longer. You can choose anywhere from 1 minute to 3 hours. I've learned the hard way that this is a smart thing to do.
Tivo will also record two different shows at the same time. The only catch is that you have to have your TV on one of the channels at that time. However, you can be watching a DVD and Tivo will record both shows at once.
There is a limit as to how many hours of recording Tivo will hold. That's really not much of an issue as long as you delete the shows once you've seen them or if you decide you aren't going to watch them.
I can't think of any other product that I have praised and recommended more to other people than Tivo. I absolutely love this device and will never, ever be without it.