TiVo Inc. will offer its digital video recording service in Japan as early as next year, possibly by partnering with local firms, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun reported, quoting TiVo CEO Michael Ramsay.
TiVo, a California, U.S.-based company whose systems let users customize television viewing by recording shows on a built-in computer hard drive for playback later, will form a Japanese unit soon and begin operating in that market as early as 2006, the paper said.
TiVo has more than 3 million subscribers in the U.S., but would face stiff competition in Japan, where firms such as Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. Ltd.'s Panasonic brand have sold large numbers of DVD recorders with similar functions.
The Nihon Keizai Shimbun quoted Ramsay as saying it would be desirable for TiVo to tie-up with a strong Japanese service provider, suggesting the company may form an alliance with a cable TV network or Internet service provider. TiVo may also join hands with Japanese electronics manufacturers to procure hard drives, the newspaper added. (Reuters)
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