So — we’ve been using over-the-air TV for about 15 months now, and as part of our setup we have a Channel Master DVR that uses TVGOS (TV Guide On Screen), which apparently is (or was!) provided by a company called Rovi (formerly Macrovision). Rovi, however, is pulling the plug on their TV Guide service as their contracts expire in various markets — which is apparently today in Chicagoland, and all TVGOS nationwide will be gone by April 13, 2013. (This will not affect all devices. Some TVs, etc., receive their listings straight over the Internet through a different service, so this info won’t apply to everyone.)
The first I found out about this was by reading a post on Jill Cataldo’s site today — her TV gave her a warning message heads up, while our Channel Master simply stopped displaying TVGOS listings for some channels earlier today, and for all channels after about midnight tonight.
If you also have a Channel Master, you can switch to PSIP listings by following the directions here. (Note the absence now of the little TV Guide logo at the top of our screen.) There are two major drawbacks to PSIP, however. First, note that we no longer have listings for all channels now, just the major broadcast stations.
Secondly, programming information now goes less than 24 hours out. I took this picture at 10:30 PM, and all of our listings now end by 8:30 PM the next day (and some don’t even go that far out). This will make setting the DVR fun — it’s now going to be more like programming the VCR by looking at a listing elsewhere and manually setting dates and times. Help, we’re going backwards in time…
If you have a Sony DVR, however, you may be even further out of luck. Check out this slashdot thread for more info on that. Here are a few more articles and forum posts (courtesy of Jill Cataldo):
- Rovi phasing out over-the-air guide.
- TV Guide On Screen Going Away?
- Rovi Switches Off OTA-Delivered Guide Service.
If you’d like to express your opinion on this to Rovi, here’s the link to their Facebook page. Note that part of the purchase price of your Channel Master, Sony, or other device that utilize(d) the TVGOS service went to Rovi.
Where to get TV listings?