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Samsung unveils digital video recorder

The electronics giant's first DVR is capable of recording 100 hours of programming. The high-capacity device is designed to work with DirecTV and TiVo services.

Samsung Electronics America is trying to make a big splash in the digital video recorder market with a large-capacity product, one able to store up to 100 hours of programming.


As TV changes into an on-demand
medium, EchoStar's DVR sets the pace.

Samsung this week announced its first DVR device, which is designed to work with DirecTV satellite service and TiVo's service.

The SIR-S4120R has a 120GB hard drive. Samsung says the device, which will be available in early September priced at $499, has 50 percent more storage capacity than most DVRs now available.

Greg Ireland, an analyst with market research company IDC, agreed the product stands out for its roominess. "If you're looking for capacity, the Samsung product would be one you'd be drawn toward," he said.

DVRs allow TV viewers to record TV shows as well as temporarily pause live broadcasts. The devices are expected to grow in popularity. There were about 1.5 million U.S. households with DVRs in 2002, and the number should climb to about 3 million this year, according to IDC.

In 2002, most households with DVRs also had satellite TV service, according to IDC. That Samsung's product is tied to DirecTV reinforces this link, Ireland said. "It speaks to the importance of the satellite TV platform for the proliferation of DVRs," he said.

TiVo's service adds additional features to DVRs. These include Season Pass, which allows viewers to record an entire season of a show with a few clicks of the remote.

Samsung's device will vie against DVRs from Philips and Hughes also designed to work with the DirecTV service. More broadly, Samsung's product will be in competition with DVRs made by DirecTV rival EchoStar Communications for its satellite TV service, Ireland said.

Samsung Electronics America is a division of Korean electronics giant Samsung Electronics.