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CableCARD: TiVo Fights The Good Fight

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by sbiller, Mar 31, 2014.

  1. May 9, 2014 #241 of 280
    Bigg

    Bigg Active Member

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    Yeah. And LTE won't have replaced Comcast and DirecTV and gang, that's for sure.

    Why? That makes no sense. Faster delivery just makes everything more expensive and difficult to do over linear delivery based on regular channels that are just hidden to the normal user (or could be just recorded off of PPV type of thing for movies). The hardware would have to be a lot beefier for no gain to the provider or the user. And you can bet that the content provider isn't going to let you skip ahead of where the live broadcast is, as they want you to watch commercials. Hence why, on the very rare occasion that I watch something that's not on HBO when it's actually on, I start 10 or 15 minutes late and catch up.
     
  2. JosephB

    JosephB Member

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    It's very clear from every one of your posts that you are stuck in the old way of thinking. Literally everything you say isn't going to happen and "doesn't make sense" is EXACTLY what the TV industry is moving towards. They've said it publicly and in filings. IP distribution is coming. The VOD-ization of all non-live events is coming. Network DVR is coming. It may be a long time, but all of those things WILL happen. In 5 years the TV industry will look a lot different than it does today. In 10-15 years it'll look NOTHING like it looks today.
     
  3. Bigg

    Bigg Active Member

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    For wireless, there are physical bandwidth limitations. You can't pull bandwidth out of your @$$ and just make things happen. It doesn't work that way. And while IP distribution over cable is perfectly technically possible today, seeing that Comcast is still using MPEG-2, and not MPEG-4, which has been the standard for 6+ years now, I don't foresee them getting to IP-based distribution anytime soon.

    You think channels are just going to give up their "slots" and DirecTV and DISH are just going to go away so that everything can "VOD-ize". You are crazy. Those channels are not going to give up their linear slots when 85% of the TV viewing today is linear, 15 years after the DVR was invented, and 38 years after VHS was invented. What will happen is more and more content will be available both way, but that's been happening for 5+ years, so that's nothing new.

    Network DVR exists today, but a lot of cable systems don't have the bandwidth to support it. Unfortunately, a lot of systems will waste the bandwidth on it, but to the user, it doesn't really do anything that's much different than what a DVR does today. And if the content providers move to block certain fast forwarding with a network DVR like they do with ON Demand today, than that's the end of the network DVR.

    In 10-15 years, the industry will look a bit different, and the pricing structure may be totally different than what we have today, but the technology distributing the video won't be much different from what's out there today.
     
  4. JosephB

    JosephB Member

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    TV is going where the people are. If no one is watching linear TV, then they will move to what customers want, which is a netflix style interface and experience.

    And Comcast has said many, many times that they are moving to IP distribution. Just because you don't think they aren't doesn't mean that all the words coming out of Brian Roberts' mouth are just made up. Come find me in 5 years and let's see where things are.
     
  5. trip1eX

    trip1eX Active Member

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    It will all go video on demand. No reason why it won't. I mean who doesn't want to turn on the tv and watch what they want when they want.

    The problem for us Tivo/DVR lovers is you won't be able to skip commercials.

    But maybe the nature of commercials on tv will change too. Maybe they will do something like YouTube does and allow you to manually skip commercials after 5 seconds.
     
  6. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    Apparently there are quite a few people who still like to watch whatever is on. In fact there are a couple of new devices out there designed to create "channels" of content from VOD providers like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, etc... where it just randomly plays shows/movies it thinks you might like back to back like a live TV channel.

    While I agree that everything will eventually be available on demand, I'm not so sure that will be the only way to watch. I think the broadcasting model will persist for quite some time.
     
  7. trip1eX

    trip1eX Active Member

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    Well if you can watch what you want when you want then that also covers those who just want to watch random content.

    But interesting concept to imagine a market of un-time-shifting devices sorta speak. It's a Bizzaro world of what we have today.
     
  8. tarheelblue32

    tarheelblue32 Active Member

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    There is basically a generational divide. My parents are in their 60s, and even though they have the ability to watch on-demand or time-shifted content, they choose not to. They just watch whatever is on the linear channels. Whereas I have some younger cousins in their teens who almost never watch linear channels. They only watch on-demand, recorded, or internet video content. I'm in my 30s and sort of in-between. I watch probably 70% on-demand or time shifted, and the other 30% linear channels.
     
  9. JosephB

    JosephB Member

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    Not necessarily. I watch Netflix, sure, but actually not as much as a lot of people my age or younger (I'm 31).

    Most of my "on demand" viewing is watching things I've recorded with my TiVo. If the industry moves towards all VOD, then I'll be mostly OK. Right now Netflix rarely ever has anything I search for, I end up having to settle for some suggestion.

    However, my "just want to watch random content" sessions are usually out of frustration of trying to decide. Sure, people will just randomly choose something on demand, but I actually prefer to just sit down and have to select something that is on right now. It's just a psychological thing, maybe I'm weird. I get analysis paralysis and it's nice to just turn on the TV and select a channel and there's something on, that I didn't have to decide on out of a million choices.
     
  10. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    Netflix's organization of content is pretty bad. If you know exactly what you want to watch it's fine, since you can search, but for finding stuff you might like you pretty much have to take what they suggest. There really aren't any filter options in the app, and on the website they're still not all that easy to use
     
  11. JosephB

    JosephB Member

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    The problem isn't finding it, they have a search feature. The problem is they don't have the rights to about 90% of the things that I search for when I decide "hey, I want to watch X, let's see if it's on Netflix"
     
  12. Diana Collins

    Diana Collins Well-Known Member TCF Club

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    Over the last 10 or 15 years wireless data has gone from a theoretical maximum of 11 Mbits/sec over WiFi (802.11b) and around 100 Kbits/sec (that's kilobits) over 2G (EDGE) networks to 600 Mbit/s sec over WiFi (802.11n MIMO) and around 100 Mbits/sec over 4G networks (LTE). LTE advanced will up that to 100 Mbits/sec symmetrical when moving and 1 Gbit/sec when stationary.

    Throughput will continue to advance. You are the only fixated on LTE. There are newer, more robust, systems coming, not the least of which is LTE-Advanced. Technologies like Artemis' that allow frequency reuse WITHIN a cell are going to vastly increase the number of distinct streams that can be delivered over a wireless network.

    Will the cable companies go wireless? Maybe, maybe not. The fact is that it doesn't matter - the VIEWERS will be going wireless, with or without them. Sooner or later that financial equation will become such that HBO, Showtime, AMC, TNT, and every other creator of original content, including the broadcast networks, will be able make more money selling their content directly to viewers than they make from cable companies. Long before that happens, I wouldn't be surprised to see them go to a two tier approach: free access if you have a cable sourced subscription, and a monthly fee paid direct if you don't.

    The cable companies are very aware of thsi fact. Comcast is one of my customers and they make no secret of the fact that they consider linear video a legacy, and declining, business. They are morphing into broadband companies. Verizon and AT&T are morphing into WIRELESS broadband companies.

    The bandwidth and technology to do IP-based distribution is coming, and in many cases is already here. The advantages to IP distribution, even of linear video content, are just too overwhelming for the cable companies to NOT pursue it.

    Perhaps the most ludicrous comment you have made so far:

     
  13. Bigg

    Bigg Active Member

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    85% of TV viewing today is linear. I don't forsee linear dying anytime soon. What will happen is that most content will be available on multiple platforms (much of it already is). There's also sports, news, sports news, and a few others types of programming that don't fit into a VOD model. There are a lot of old movie channels that could use to go to an on-demand only model, but the way they are force-bundled, they won't do that anytime soon.

    To a certain extent, but I know a lot of people my age (24) who watch mostly or all linear TV. Even one of my roommates barely DVRs anything, and he's using one of my TiVo Minis running off of my XL4, so it's certainly not for lack of ability to do so.

    The problem with that argument is that a lot of that has come through wide channels, and a lot of the future gains will come through carrier aggregation, which doesn't increase the overall bandwidth, although it does tend to make bandwidth more available, just like DOCSIS 3. If you look at the last 10 years or so, there have been significant, but not huge gains in the spectral efficiency of wireless services. Going from EVDO and HSPA+ to LTE gained some spectral efficiency, but it wasn't ground-breaking. Much of the additional bandwidth came from wider channels (especially for Verizon moving from 1.25mhz EVDO to 10mhz LTE). OFDMA is somewhat more efficient and better in many ways than CDMA, which is used by both EVDO and HSPA+, but it's not an order of magnitude. OFDMA is more robust under heavy load, but there's not actually that much more spectral efficiency, it just doesn't bomb out nearly as quickly. Much of the additional bandwidth added to the wireless systems has been through the deployment of more towers and more spectrum, not huge gains in efficiency.

    We'll see. There will be some forward progress, but for the foreseeable future, it's not going to increase the bandwidth available by two orders of magnitude, which is what would be needed to do widespread wireless video distribution. Some sort of competitive wireless home internet in suburban, exurban and rural areas will come halfway in-between now and video, probably a lot closer to now than video, since the amount of bandwidth required is far lower, although still quite a bit larger than that capacity available today in even moderately developed areas.

    They may go direct to consumer, but that has nothing to do with wireless distribution. That would come in through a land-based internet connection, which of course brings in the issue of net neutrality. But that really has nothing to do with wireless delivery of video. You can watch HBO Go on your phone today, and have a really crappy user experience, just as you would if you could buy HBO directly from HBO over the internet.

    Not because of lack of demand for it, but because they are getting killed on the carriage fees, while it takes more and more bandwidth, versus HSI that takes relatively little bandwidth and costs relatively little to provide. HSI is their biggest cash cow now, even if it looks cheaper to the consumer.

    AT&T has been doing IPTV deliver for 5 years with 802.11q VLANs and QoS, but their system was built for it from the ground up, they didn't convert an existing system with legacy equipment in the field to replace. Their system could actually have been good if they had done FTTH, which would have allowed them to open the bandwidth on TV channels way up, and offer gigabit internet.

    That being said, there's no reason for the cable companies to go to IP, and they don't want to spend the money. You're saying that they are somehow going to replace almost EVERY box out there (with the exception of some of the new X1 boxes, which *might* be able to handle IP video), when they haven't even been able to convert to linear MPEG-4 over QAM, which a majority of the HD equipment out there already supports, and which wouldn't affect their SD channels or equipment? You're nuts.

    You took it out of context. I was referring to the ludicrous idea of a multicast satellite delivery of content, like is done today in real-time, but in faster than real-time. It would be an immensely costly endeavor for zero benefit to anyone.
     
  14. Johncv

    Johncv Active Member

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    What happen when (no longer if) AT&T buy DirecTV?
     
  15. trip1eX

    trip1eX Active Member

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    YOu're splitting hairs. There really isn't a difference between selecting something "on" now in a Tv Guide vs just selecting something randomly on a VoD service like Netflix.

    My cabletv tuners are pretty slow. They are probably marginally faster than how fast Netflix can load a new show. They aren't so much faster that I can drop the probably without actually timing the two.

    Netflix has many "channels" in the form of categories like "you might like this because you watched this" or "dirty foreign thrillers" or ....

    I'm not really seeing the difference. And since something like Netflix is all software based then they could create new ways to show off content fairly easily. And could even duplicate cable tv channels (if they had the rights to the same content.)

    They could even solve your needs one better by having a big red panic button for those that can't decide what to watch. Hit it and a show starts playing. They could program the button to load random shows from random starting points. They could have options to load content at the beginning of popular scenes. etc.
     
  16. trip1eX

    trip1eX Active Member

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    I don't think it is as big of a generational divide as you think. My parents took to a Tivo like a fish to water. My Dad turned 70 a few days ago. Anecdotal, but remember the VCR has been mainstream since ...the early 80s maybe earlier. ...so time-shifting tv has been around for awhile. 35 years or so.
     
  17. Diana Collins

    Diana Collins Well-Known Member TCF Club

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    I beg to differ. According to the Consumer Electronics Association’s (CEA) latest (mid 2013) “U.S. Household Television Usage” report, the number of U.S. households that receive cable TV programming through cable, satellite, and fiber connections have fallen to 83% – down from 88% in 2010. The CEA cited non-TV devices such as computers, tablets, and smartphones, as well as streaming services as a major factor in the drop in cable subscribed households. The same report found that 28% of U.S. households now watch some TV content via the internet, with 4% using the internet to exclusively access TV content.

    The demand for cable TV is declining, and the decline is accelerating.
     
  18. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    Has no effect on CableCARD. Both DirecTV and AT&T Uverse have special exemptions from CableCARD mandate.
     
  19. Bigg

    Bigg Active Member

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    There is some movement because of people who don't really watch much TV leaving now that the prices are much higher. However, that's not that big of a trend. Comcast shouldn't worry about cord cutters, they should worry about AT&T, Verizon, DirecTV, DISH, local fiber, overbuilders (ok fine, that's my town, and a few cities).

    The biggest streamers of them all are the ones using HBO Go, WatchESPN, and other services that are tied to a cable or satellite subscription. I don't think Comcast has anything to worry about there. Heck, much of the streaming I have done is through those services, with some streaming through VUDU, Amazon, and Netflix. The only thing streaming is killing is Comcast's awful VOD rentals.
     
  20. unitron

    unitron Active Member

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    My mom is old enough to have been your parents' mother, and I can't remember the last time she watched anything that wasn't time shifted, and I pretty much only might look at CNN or CNBC live.

    My father, however, wasn't much for watching anything on VCR, and were he still with us would probably still be switching channels on the TV's tuner every few minutes.
     

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