This article says that AOL and Tivo are partnering to offer services that call for San Jose, Calif.-based TiVo to integrate AOL features like instant messaging (IM) and live chat into its new TiVo Series2 DVRs, and both companies are working to provide AOL members who are also TiVo subscribers the ability to schedule recordings on their TiVo from the AOL service.
TiVo already supported web controls: http://tivo.lightn.org/, but it seems that simplifying this software and integrating with AOL would lead to a higher rate of adoption.
This appears to me as a signal that AOl and TiVo are coordinating their efforts to attack Microsoft’s convergence strategy. Personally, I was hoping that AOL would work with Sony for this instead. Microsoft has pulled their UltimateTV business, and is focussing instead on XBox to get into your homes. AOL should recognize this change in strategy and team up with Sony’s Playstation division. Web services as we know them on the desktop and web services as they will be applied through home appliances such as the playstation will create a large amount of integration value – exactly the strategy that Microsoft used to take over your desktop. If Microsoft succeeds at home, too, then we are all doomed. 🙂