personally I prefer it via a smart TV app or vis Roku- some folks complain that Tivo is sluggish when loading i player & choosing programs, but my wife happily uses it.
I am not sure it the Tivo search function now also searches I player.
ITV hub is frankly awful - ad invested, standard definition only.. ditto the apps for channels 4 & 5 , Virgin catch up is probably far better though I don't watch those channels myself & cannot directly comment on whether Virgin has HD catch-up
i'd say that very much depends on whether you are interested in any of the non-freeview channels. e.g. we considered getting rid of our Tivo but ,my wife like sky arts & did not want to give that up, so we have the Virgin M+ channels package, but I dont watch any of it.. i prefer PC -> plex media server -> samsung TV plex app,
if what you like is on freeview, then consider buying a freeview HD recorder instead e.g. Humax, Panasonic, or look at freesat
when deciding to downscale I made a 1 page word doc showing all channels in each of M, M+ L, XL packages, then we trawled through all our tivo recordings to see where they had come from and highlighted those channels. I would attach a copy but we don't seem to have saved it. It is easily done with cut and paste from the virgin web pages
we found that the M+ package covered almost everything
if you simplify that channels compare list even more by removing all the +1 channels, and any stuff you know you'll never watch e.g. kids, foreign... it's even clearer. We'd taken XL for the bundled BT sport, but we were not watching any of the extra 100 rubbish xl channels .
and if you have a tivo, you don't need the +1 channels, as you can record stuff.
the most basic virgin package is basically just the freeview / freesat channels. I read up on freesat also but that seems to make sense only if you cannot get good freeview via aerial. we could get sky TV free for a year via the new customer = refer friends deals but year 2 looked not so good. We ruled out NOW TV as it is SD only and has no subtitles.