OnePass is how you set up series recordings on TiVo, with an added feature for the cord-cutter.
As mentioned before, the TiVo Roamio DVR series lets you add subscription content providers, notably Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu Plus. But provider content can now be integrated with your over-the-air recorded shows.
In an earlier post, Our post-cord-cutting TV menu, I displayed a list of some of my wife’s favorite cable shows that are available on Roku channels, Netflix and Amazon among them (we subscribe to both).
Previously, if she developed a yen to see “Wings” as a result of browsing the list (not a natural habit for her) she would see that it is on Netflix. Then she could go to Netflix on the TiVo (or the Roku box), select her account, find “Wings” in her list, and pick an episode. Doable, but multiple steps are required. Not the smoothest experience.
With OnePass, I was able to do a search for “Wings”, see that it is available on Netflix, then set up a OnePass that puts “Wings” on the same list as her antenna-recorded shows.
For example, when she is looking for something to watch on a Saturday afternoon, she might scroll through “The Bachelor”, “The Bob Newhart Show” and “General Hospital” recorded from broadcast TV, and…”Wings”, “Property Brothers” and “Hoarders” NOT on broadcast TV. The latter three are on Netflix, Amazon Prime and Netflix, respectively. But all are presented in the same list. She can select any of these series and then choose which episode to watch. Very smooth and integrated.
A bonus is that Netflix, Amazon or Hulu Plus offerings take up no room on your hard drive.
VUDU (Video on Demand) is another provider. If you can’t find what you want on the others, you might find it on VUDU. But it will typically cost 2 or 3 bucks per show. Anathema to the true-believing cord-cutter, but maybe worth it on occasion.
- Lack of a unified exploratory mode for the content providers, i.e., you need to already know what shows you want to watch. I’m not sure how this could be done, anyway.
- YouTube. It’s there, but it isn’t integrated the same way as the other providers. Plus, the user interface is tricky.
- Lack of other content providers. In truth, TiVo has it pretty well sewn-up with the big three, Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu Plus. But it doesn’t eliminate our need for a Roku box. We still need Roku for Media Browser and Plex, the channels that allow us easy access to our home server content, plus Crackle, Sky News International and a few audio channels (though TiVo does have Pandora and Spotify).
Nevertheless, OnePass’ integration of provider content with over-the-air recorded content is a huge boon to the cord-cutter, unmatched by would-be competitors such as Channel Master DVR + and Tablo DVR.