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UK: Telewest Plans HD DVR Box for 1Q 2006

Telewest plans to soon launch its HD in the United Kingdom and has outlined plans for TV Drive, a DVR to be made available to all subscribers within the first quarter of 2006. The set-top box will include three tuners to allow the simultaneous recording of two programs while watching a third. (It has not, however, been able to expand a day beyond 24 hours!) Telewest said its STB has a 160GB hard drive, enabling up to 80 hours of (mostly SD) storage.

The HD service will launch at the same time as the DVR product. Telewest hopes to beat BSkyB, which plans to roll out its satellite HD services in early to mid-2006. Telewest is providing few details yet on its HD content, according to published reports.

The TV Drive box will cost the typical sub about an extra £12 per month ($US20). Telewest also plans to launch a VOIP service in sometime in 2006.