TiVo, the Silicon Valley company that popularized the digital video recorder, and Best Buy, the national electronics chain, are forging a broad partnership.
On Thursday, the companies plan to announce that Best Buy will heavily promote TiVo products in its 1,100 stores in the United States. TiVo will develop a version of its set-top box, to be sold in Best Buy stores, that will let the retailer advertise its products and services to TiVo subscribers on their home televisions.
The companies did not disclose financial details other than to say that Best Buy was making a multiyear commitment to advertise TiVo devices. Tom Rogers, TiVo's chief executive, said it was "a huge step above any kind of marketing that has ever been done for TiVo before."
As part of the deal, the companies also said that Best Buy would finance an effort to bring TiVo's software and search tools to Best Buy's own brand of consumer electronics, like its Insignia high-definition TVs.
Both companies are trying to significantly change how the world sees them.
Facing fierce competition from Amazon.com and Wal-Mart Stores, the Minneapolis-based Best Buy wants to extend its relationship with its customers outside of its stores. It has steadily expanded its Geek Squad customer service operation and last fall acquired the music subscription service Napster for $121 million.
TiVo said it planned to make the Napster music service available to TiVo subscribers on their televisions.
TiVo, for its part, desperately wants people to stop thinking of its technology purely as a way to pause and record live television.
That remains an important feature in TiVo boxes. But over the last few years, as cable and satellite companies introduced their own DVRs, TiVo has tried to position its device as a media hub that combines traditional television with a broad range of content from the Internet.
Current owners of broadband-connected TiVos, for example, can watch YouTube videos, download movies from Amazon .com and stream movies from Netflix on their televisions.
But TiVo has had a hard time telling people about that.
In an effort to reach profitability after years of significant operating losses, it slashed its quarterly marketing budget from around $9 million in 2007 to less than $1 million during the quarter that ended April 30 of this year. The number of households with TiVo devices fell to 1.6 million in April, from 1.727 million two years earlier.
"The kind of strategic marketing embrace this deal involves will very substantially advance the understanding of what we now have to offer,? Mr. Rogers said.
As part of the deal, Best Buy also plans to use TiVo to offer advice and guidance on products like HDTVs and digital cameras and provide ways to buy these products via the television remote control. TiVo currently offers its users ways to order pizzas, buy products on Amazon and get movie tickets from Fandango from their TV sets.
Best Buy stock has nearly doubled since hitting a November low, buoyed by the disappearance of rivals like Circuit City and signs of consumer spending. TiVo stock has also doubled since then, largely on positive news from its intellectual property court battle with the satellite technology provider EchoStar.