‘Virtual PVR’ launches for mobile phones, PCs and Macs

A company has launched a new service which it has dubbed as a “virtual PVR”, allowing users to record and watch free-to-air TV shows on their PC, Macs, iPhones, the iPod touch V2 and media enabled Nokia handsets.  

The independently owned myTVR service works on a subscription model and is initially launching in the Melbourne metropolitan market, with plans to roll out in Sydney next year.

It allows users the to record FTA TV shows using the TV guide provided on its site and store them for personal viewing live or at their own leisure.

Consumers can either try out the new service through a free 30 minute trial, or sign up to two packages – 12 hours of recording for $7.85 a month, or three hours of recordings at a cost of $5.85 per month.

Users can keep recorded programmes for 14 days, and they can also delete shows and keep recording new ones within the one month timeframe.

Michael Carew, myTVR founder said the service has been two years in the making and was prompted because he wanted to create something that allowed people to “watch TV anywhere at anytime”.

He said it is aiming to have around 20,000 subscribers in Melbourne and Sydney respectively by the end of next year.

Unlike TiVo in other markets – excluding Australia where the Seven Media Group is the licensee through Hybrid TV – it does not allow users to skip ads, but they can manually fast forward them. Carew said it does have the capability of including an ad skipping function, which it will review in the future.

The service will be a full subscription model, with the possibility of advertising appearing on the company’s website.

Carew said it is also planning to launch in other metropolitan markets depending on demand.


  1. Steven Noble
    16 Dec 09
    1:53 pm

  2. Article says: “Unlike TiVo it does not allow users to skip ads, but they can manually fast forward them.”

    In Australia, TiVo doesn’t let you skip ads.

    Article says: “Carew said it does have the capability to add a time shifting function, which it will review in the future.”

    Isn’t this entire service, by definition, time, place and device shifting?

  3. Duncan Riley
    16 Dec 09
    2:30 pm

  4. Interesting to see where this sits legally in Australia; a similar attempt at a centralised PVR service (that is, where the company makes the recording on your behalf) hit legal issues in the US on the basis that centralised recording didn’t constitute fair use because the recording involved a commercial service.

    Given the TV channels here won’t even allow ad skipping on a TiVo, I can’t see them being that amused by this.

  5. Milorad
    16 Dec 09
    3:06 pm

  6. ad skipping is available on every other PVR not directly associated with a TV station. tivo is channel seven’s love-slave in australia, which is the only reasony it doesn’t have the feature here.

    On myTVR’s website, some mention is made of “licensing” being applied to individual user accounts, indicating that a portion of your monthly fee may be going to the networks for the privilege. /speculation

  7. Milorad
    16 Dec 09
    3:09 pm

  8. *** I should say, skipping rather than ‘ad skipping’, as it doesn’t work as it does in the US.

  9. Camille Alarcon
    16 Dec 09
    4:11 pm

  10. Hi Steven,

    You’re correct on TiVo not offering ad skipping in Australia, which has now been updated in the article. Also, the time shifting capability mentioned refers to ad skipping – so in the future myTVR may allow users to skip ads.


    Camille – Mumbrella

  11. Steven Noble
    16 Dec 09
    4:16 pm

  12. Hi Camille,

    This from Wikipedia: “Time shifting is the recording of programming to a storage medium to be viewed or listened to at a time more convenient to the consumer.”


  13. Jordan Windebank
    16 Dec 09
    5:32 pm

  14. Now to find an easy way to stream this to my TV without additional hardware and I’m set. Cost is pretty impressive for heavy TV watchers.

  15. Clinton
    16 Dec 09
    5:46 pm

  16. IMpressive service. Also, the nicest looking most straightforward and convenient online TV guide I’ve seen yet – http://www.mytvr.com.au/guide

  17. Harison
    16 Dec 09
    6:26 pm

  18. TiVo is unmetered on my ISP (internode). This is not. Otherwise I like the idea

  19. aplet
    17 Dec 09
    7:07 am

  20. Seems like a good idea, although I’d imagine the subscription costs may be a bit high for most, given that TIVOs are already in the homes of the most likely candidates.

    Why not offered on TVs? Seems like the obvious drawback

  21. Camille Alarcon
    17 Dec 09
    11:09 am

  22. Hi Steven – that’s now been amended in the story :)

    Camille – Mumbrella

  23. Gerard
    17 Dec 09
    6:28 pm

  24. Why would you pay for something AND watch ads?

  25. mattk
    21 Dec 09
    10:13 am

  26. A ‘networked pvr’ service is not exactly a new idea, but I never thought I would see someone try to release one here in Oz. My understanding of copyright law in this country, would require mytvr to have an individual recording of each show for each of their customers that wanted to watch that show. So, if 100 customers wanted to watch the same show, they would need 100 separate recordings of that show.

    They would not be permitted to just have one recording of a show and then be allowed to give access to that one recording to multiple people.

    If I am understanding our copyright law correctly and they would need as many individual recordings as customers that want access to it, the infrastructure they would need to have in place to continue to provide the service as they grow is almost imaginable.

    Perhaps I am wrong, and they can just record one copy of every show and then on sell it to multiple customers in multiple locations???

    Regardless, I don’t think it will be long before each of the networks (or Freeview) take some sort of action. It is also not clear where they (mytvr.com.au), are getting their EPG data from.

  27. r4i
    21 Dec 09
    4:41 pm

  28. I am waiting for this mobile I am very fond of new phones I loved to use this multimedia and high definition phone these are the My favorite gadgets.They give you very nice performance with sound as well as picture quality and other multimedia


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