DIY Friday: TiVo on your mobile phone

Picture it: you’re at a baseball game and are fighting with your buddy about whether or not the last hit was fair or foul. The away team’s manager is screaming at the ump and the home team isn’t showing the replay on the scoreboard to avoid controversy. You are stuck guessing — and your honor is on the line.

The solution: pull out your mobile phone, connect to your home’s TiVo, rewind the recording, then force your friend to buy you a beer for getting the call wrong. It’s possible!

An innovative blogger pulled off a very useful mashup by connecting his PPC-6700 mobile phone to a Slingbox, and the Slingbox to his TiVo. A Slingbox is a TV streaming device that enables viewers to remotely view content.

After connecting your TiVo to the Slingbox, download the appropriate player for your mobile phone. Currently there are versions for Windows Mobile 2003, Windows Mobile Version 5.0 for Smartphone, and Palm OS.

While many users find the ability to easily record shows to be most important, I’m intrigued by the convenience of having vast amounts of mobile content. The screen size on the 6700 or the Q is not much different than on an iPod and this mashup avoids hard drive space limitations and the trouble of having to download content, then add it to the iPod. By streaming from your TiVo, you are guaranteed a steady selection of fresh media—both live and recorded.

From early user reviews, the quality appears to be more-than-sufficient. Here is a video from a Motorola Q (skip to 3:30 to watch the Chappelle Show):

Don’t have a Slingbox or TiVo but still want to stream TV on your phone? Try a free service called Orb. While it let’s your home computer be a hub that streams all types of media—music, photos, and videos—to any Internet-connected device, its tv feature may be most useful. Simply connect your tv or set-top box to your computer’s tv tuner card (instructions on buying one are here), then install Orb’s free software. Your computer becomes a server distributing your tv’s content. Orb includes DVR technology, allowing you to (like the TiVo mashup) remotely record programming.

Enjoy the game!