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Get a TiVo Roamio with lifetime service for $299.98

That's for a refurbished Roamio, but it's still by far the best TiVo deal, well, ever.

CNET's Cheapskate scours the Web for great deals on PCs, phones, gadgets and much more. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page.


TiVo

I'll just come out and say it: I love my TiVo. It's an older model, but I bit the bullet and sprang for the lifetime service agreement (because monthly service fees are evil).

When newer TiVos debuted last year, I was tempted -- but no way was I going to drop at least $700. And despite occasional sales on the hardware, TiVo has rarely budged on that ungodly, ridiculous, borderline insulting $500 lifetime plan.

Today, there's budging. You can get a "renewed" (code for "refurbished") TiVo Roamio DVR with lifetime service for $299.98, a total savings of $350. That's $49.99 for the box and $249.99 for the service, though in my brain I'm more comfortable thinking of it as $300 for the box and $0 for service.

Interestingly, you can also get a TiVo Roamio OTA DVR for the same total price, but that makes absolutely no sense: The regular Roamio includes OTA support. In other words, you can connect either your antenna or digital cable/Verizon FIOS.

Because this is not the Roamio Plus, however, it lacks built-in TiVo Stream features, though you can certainly add that handy box later if you wish.

Don't want to go the refurb route? A new Roamio will set you back an extra $100. The thing is, there's no warranty information listed for refurbished TiVos. It might be 90 days labor and one year parts like with new ones, or it might be 90/90. (If you've had better luck tracking down this info, please share it in the comments!)

CNET called this because at the time there was no Roamio OTA. Of course, nearly everything about that review applies to it as a cable-powered DVR as well.

There is one notable caveat, however: it's very likely that the Roamio's successor, rumored to be called the TiVo Bolt, is just weeks away. As blogger Dave Zatz (who's broken all the big news on the Bolt so far) points out, this "fire sale pricing is likely clearing inventory ahead of [the] TiVo Bolt." Still, unlike the period when TiVo was transitioning from standard-def to HD DVRs, these Roamio units will still bring a lot of value to the table, even if they're on their way out.

My question for all of you: Is this the TiVo deal you've been waiting for? Or have we pretty much crossed over into the post-DVR age? Maybe you're perfectly satisfied with your Comcast, U-verse or other leased DVR? I'm curious!

Bonus deal: Game time! Stranded on a desert island infested with zombies? Sounds like the perfect setup for an action-adventure! For a limited time, Green Man Gaming has the Dead Island Franchise Pack (for PC) for $4.62 when you apply coupon code SAVE23-WITHGM-GAUG15. GameSpot called it a "schlocky, gruesomely fun action role-playing game." Read its full review.

Editors' note (8:38 a.m. PT): Added additional context to the TiVo deal regarding the rumors of the TiVo Bolt.