TiVo (Nasdaq: TIVO) may be one of the coolest four-letter words among couch potatoes, but its quarterly reports remain a horrorshow.

The DVR pioneer is proud to post its highest fiscal first-quarter revenue in three years, but let's hit the pause button long enough to dissect that claim. TiVo's gain results entirely a significant boost in hardware revenue, partly thanks to the new Premiere boxes that launched midway through the quarter.

This may not seem like a bad thing, but TiVo's hardware gross margins have been historically negative. There's a reason why TiVo backs out the hardware contribution, providing the more telling service and technology revenue on a quarterly basis. How is TiVo faring on that front? Not so hot. Service and technology revenue of $43.2 million is both a sequential and year-over-year decline, as TiVo continues to shed subscribers.

TiVo has been eating through subs faster than Jared from Subway. It closed out the quarter with 2.5 million subscribers, far less than the 3.2 million on its rolls a year earlier. TiVo-owned subs -- the number of accounts that deal directly with TiVo -- are down to a mere 1.4 million TiVoheads. In short, a hardware surge isn't translating into a larger user base.

TiVo also posted a wider deficit for the period, losing $0.13 a share for the quarter. After a brief profitable stint, the company has posted five consecutive quarterly losses.

TiVo continues to shake its patents, despite the recent setback in its seemingly victorious case against EchoStar (Nasdaq: SATS) and DISH Network (Nasdaq: DISH). Other media heavyweights such as DirecTV (NYSE: DTV) and Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA) -- the largest satellite television and cable provider, respectively -- continue to license TiVo's set-top technology.

There is also a fair amount of excitement over its marketing alliance with Best Buy (NYSE: BBY). The two companies announced yesterday that they are planning to integrate TiVo software into broadband-connected Insignia televisions. However, Best Buy was also singled out last week as a retailer partner for Google TV.

At least four analysts questioned TiVo executives about Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG) impact during last night's conference call. Google TV aims to redefine the convergence of broadcast television and online connectivity, which appears to be a bigger threat to TiVo than an opportunity.

TiVo isn't toast. It maintains a cash-rich, debt-free balance sheet. A favorable resolution in its DISH and EchoStar litigation would make it rain even more money. However, TiVo needs to grow its subscriber base, return to profitability, and increase its service and technology revenue to matter again outside of the courtroom.

The company's 0-for-3 on those fronts at the moment. TiVo shareholders had better hope that the pause button isn't sticky.

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Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz thinks life is too short to not fly past unwanted commercials on TV. He owns no shares in any of the stocks in this article and is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.