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TiVo to come packaged with Web-based movies

The digital video recorder maker teams with iFilm to provide TV access to movies previously available only on the Web.

TiVo, a subscription-based TV programming service, has teamed with iFilm Network to provide TV access to movies previously available only on the Web, the companies announced today.

As part of the deal, set to begin this summer, TiVo's system will be sold with a collection of movies from Los Angeles-based iFilm already downloaded into its system.

TiVo offers "personal video systems," also known as digital video recorders (DVR), and a complementary service that allows TV viewers to pause and rewind live television by recording video streams to the device's hard drive. The company's service also allows viewers to customize TV schedules and specialized content.

In working with iFilm, San Jose, Calif.-based TiVo will be able to offer films and animation already popular on the Web to its DVR customers. In return, TiVo will promote iFilm's entertainment content on the TiVo Web site.

The number and kind of films to be included in the package are still being worked out, the companies said.

"People have been talking forever about convergence--this is it," said Kevin Wendle, iFilm's chief executive. "We're taking content created directly for the Internet and bypassing broadcast television and distributing directly on the TiVo box. It's really a new distribution paradigm."

This is the third major deal for TiVo this year. Several months ago, the company scored partnerships with Liberate Technologies and Blockbuster for its "video-on-demand" technologies.