The DVR (digital video recorder) is one of our favorite modern technologies. It empowers people more than I thought it ever would, and I think it will continue to do so for families for years to come. When I first heard about the DVR, I didn’t realize how effective and useful it could be; then, we got our first DVR in 2008. We began by recording just a few things to test it out, and we were hooked.
Now, just like most people in today’s society, we are normally busy and have limited free time (especially to be able to just relax and watch TV) but this is how the DVR crosses that line between useful and empowering. If you like to watch TV, then you can use your DVR to maximize your free time at home. Free time is precious for families, so this is a basic but invaluable benefit! My family is now able to “control” our TV and we can now watch more of our favorite shows, see less commercials, and have the TV schedule work around our schedule.
Honestly, I could never go back to life without a DVR (okay, if I had to, I could..I just wouldn’t want to). We record just about every show we like to watch: weekly competition shows, our favorite childhood reruns, news specials, movies, and anything else that interests us. With a DVR, watching TV is a much better experience because it puts the family in control.
Flipping through channels and watching commercials is nice sometimes, but you always have a lot more options when you’re using the DVR. And to me, options equal empowerment.
For those of you who do not have a DVR yet, here are some more things to learn about them. You may be surprised at how much control you actually have:
- TV show times no longer matter—you can set a show up to record and you won’t miss it. You don’t have to worry about being home at a specific time for the program.
- Pick and choose the commercials you watch.
- Fast forward, rewind, and pause your shows.
- Makes your favorite shows available whenever you want to watch them. (If we can’t find anything good on live TV, we have no problem re-watching our previously recorded Seinfeld or Roseanne episodes!)
- Recorded programs are stored right in your satellite/cable box.
- You have an option to add extra storage capacity with an external hard drive.
- You can save money because you no longer have to purchase DVDs or tapes to store your recorded shows.
- You can record a show and watch another show at the same time, on the same TV.
- Most DVRs are free with a new service, which means there’s no expensive equipment to buy.
- It’s easy to set up an entire season to record with just a few pushes on the remote. You no longer have to setup the recording weekly.
- You’re free to delete shows at any time.
- Missing out on some commercials we might like to see.
- There’s a possible monthly service fee (but believe me, it’s worth it!).
- We’re less likely to watch new shows, because we watch mostly what is already recorded.
- Limited hard drive space if you choose not to use a separate external hard drive.
- Having to “wait” for certain shows to be on TV (this doesn’t bother us, but could be a concern for those that are used to the instant ways of Netflix).
I listed both pros and cons to be fair, but honestly, I see only pros after having our DVR for 3 years. We would never go back. Having a DVR empowers our family by saving time, allowing us to watch the shows we aren’t normally home for, and we can skip over some of those darn commercials! These benefits give families more control over their free time, which is a huge perk. Just think of everything you could accomplish with even an extra hour or two a day!
Do you have a DVR at home? If so, what is the main benefit for your family? Could you ever go back to life without it? And what other modern technology empowers you, whether at work or at home?