When I first ran into Digeo in the middle of 2007, the company had just begun to roll out its HD DVR to the public. They talked a good game and appeared ready to take on TiVo, who all but owns the set-top DVR market. However, within a matter of months, it became painfully clear that its Moxi DVR wasn’t going anywhere.
Their set top HD DVR could only record standard definition programming over cable, something they left out in their demo to me. Want to record HD? Hope you are in range of a high-definition over the air station. The box was big and clumsy and well, the whole product seemed to suck.
I was on their beta program for a matter of about two weeks before the product went under (in fact, the DVR still sits in my basement in the box, I forgot to send it back — feel free to e-mail me Digeo if you’re reading this with your mailing address). I didn’t even get a chance to set the thing up — and once I found out about the DVRs bizarre limitations I decided to pass.
Color me surprised after Digeo’s spectacular flameout post-CES 2008 to see them attempting to make a comeback. But sure enough, Dave Zatz has discovered a brand new unit has appeared on Digeo’s pages. So lets look over the enhancements.
Sexier, smaller set top box? Check.
CableCARD HD support instead of OTA? Check.
No monthly fees like TiVo? Check.
Reasonable retail price? Sorry, no dice.
Zatz has found out this box will retail for $800. I don’t know what they’re thinking. TiVo, the market leader, had a hard enough time selling its HD DVR for $600. What makes Digeo think its going to be able to break into the market with a device that a) has a smaller hard drive than TiVo HD XL at $200 less, and b) is all but an unknown with consumers, but is coming at a premium?
I’m sorry — not to be blunt — but it seems like this company is just destined to repeat its errors over and over again. I’m glad they’re trying again, but come on, this is a bad economy. You really need to have an awesome value proposition in order to charge a high price for your products.
What I’m seeing so far tells me this new Moxi DVR is not. It’s actually disappointing: I think TiVo could use a little kick in the pants.