While it's not unheard of to hold a contest where the prize doesn't yet exist, it's usually not a good idea to offer a prize that won't be available relatively soon after the contest ends. So, the fact that TiVo has just launched an eleven-week contest in conjunction with American Idol, in which the grand prize is a TiVo Series 3 DVR, has already resulted in a flood of speculation as to when the long-awaited box will finally materialize. The contest rules stipulate that TiVo has up to four months after the end of the contest to fulfill, meaning that the latest the Series 3 will be available will be October. Engadget contributor Dave Zatz speculates that the box will be out the first of September, at a price of $800. Anyone else want to hazard a guess?

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TiVo giving away Series 3 player - and launch date?