Virgin Media claim their TiVo box is the best way to watch TV, but that wasn’t the case last night when dodgy EPG data caused its customers to miss the start of BT Sport’s UFC coverage.
The EPG on Virgin’s boxes told viewers and their set top boxes that the fight was being shown on BT Sport 1.
It actually aired on BT Sport 2.
This meant UFC fans sitting up to watch the fight live will at best have missed the start, while those who went to bed and entrusted their boxes to record it will wake up this morning to discover they’ve got Basketball and German football instead.
BT has been keen to stress that the fight was always scheduled to air on its second channel and that this was correctly signposted on the BT TV and Sky EPGs.
The problem seems to stem from the fact that the TiVo doesn’t use standard EPG data from the broadcasters, but instead gets its EPG from a third party which adds additional information in order to power the box’s unnecessarily complex recording system.
(TiVo users keen to defend the need to worry about whether a show is new or a repeat or highlight the recording priority feature might like to note that certain other boxes can automatically resolve conflicts and record series without any of the TiVo’s fussing and lengthy error logs.)
The box also only updates the EPG once a day which means it can’t cope with programmes moving around within schedules and the EPG can’t be updated speedily to correct errors such as last night’s.
Virgin Media customers rushing to Twitter this morning might want to consider the above when deciding which company to vent their frustrations at.