Tiburon, CA-based Simple.TV announced late Friday afternoon that they are shutting down the electronic program guide service associated with the cloud DVR products effective this Saturday, August 5. An early entrant in the cloud-dependent DVR space, these products included a single-tuner model that was later replaced by a two-tuner unit.
When connected to an off-air antenna and an external hard drive, Simple TV provided a unique way to time-shift broadcast television. As is the case with similar products from Ontario, Canada-based Nuvyyo, sold under the Tablo brand, content was viewed from the local drive, but only through a cloud connection, on a smartphone or tablet using iOS or Android apps, or on a web-based site for PC viewing.
Due to slow sales, the high cost of delivering the program guide service and servers as well as presumably funding issues, Simple TV products have not been available for some time. However, since the program guide servers remained active until today, the units still functioned. That is no longer the case. A $100 discount on the TiVo Roamio OTA with 1TB of storage was made available through today as compensation to existing SimpleTV owners.
The fate of the Simple TV intellectual property, particularly where it intersects with Silicon Dust is unknown, but Tablo, its main competitor remains very viable with a new model including onboard storage recently joining their lineup, along with a tuner and cloud DVR service designed for us with the Nvidia Shield. Available for sale online and through Best Buy, and with more new Tablo products to follow this year, Tablo continues to successfully provide DVR products for OTA, where SimpleTV was not able to continue.