ALVISO, California: US digital video pioneer TiVo is extending its entertainment services to subscribers by offering access to the Rhapsody online music library.

Customers with broadband-connected set-top boxes - around 850,000 of TiVo's 4.2 million existing subscriptions - can, from today (Tuesday), listen to Rhapsody's library of four million songs via their television sets.

Declares TiVo ceo Tom Rogers: "This puts us on the map as distinguishing ourselves from other generic DVRs."

The company says it will roll out the Rhapsody feature - a joint venture between RealNetworks and MTV Networks - in stages, with priority for current subscribers who sign up, but it is also counting on its appeal to new customers.

TiVo has introduced a series of new features to compete against DVR services from cable and satellite TV providers.

These include a venture with online retailer Amazon where subscribers rent or buy videos, then download them directly to a set-top box to be watched like any other program recorded via their TV.

Data sourced from Washington Post Online; additional information by WARC staff