I reinstalled my mother-in-law's TiVo last night. It's one of those things that sons-in-law do to win babysitting points.
Now that TiVo
"On November 18, 2008, we commenced a plan to reduce our operational expenses, primarily through a reduction in headcount, as we manage through the challenges presented by a difficult economic climate and a rapidly evolving retail consumer market," the company explained in its 8-K filing last night.
The company isn't revealing how many employees it will let go, but it won't be many. The move will result in a pretax charge of just $1 million during the current quarter.
But it still stings. TiVo seemed to be on a roll. It's been surprising Wall Street with back-to-back profitable quarters. The company has also been inking deals to make its home theater boxes more useful.
Did you catch this week's deal, which lets hungry couch potatoes order Domino's Pizza
For those scoring at home, here are a few of the things you can now do with a TiVo:
Program your TiVo through Research In Motion's
Stream digitally delivered queue titles through TiVo boxes in the near future, if you're a Netflix
Stream clips from Google's
(NASDAQ:GOOG)YouTube, as well as download select video content from select partners.
The rub, sadly, is that all of these initiatives haven't created a whole lot of demand for TiVo. It has been losing more subs from its expired pact with DirecTV
In a soft economy in which worried consumers are likely to spend more time at home, TiVo is one of the few consumer-facing companies that should be thriving in this environment. But it isn't. Even if TiVo thrilled investors with an unexpected profit in its latest quarter, it came on a 5% decline in service and technology revenue.
How can a company so cool be so stagnant?
Other "thumbs-up" reads to kill time until the earnings report: