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Lifetime is Far Too Expensive on the Mini

Discussion in 'TiVo Mini' started by andrews777, Aug 30, 2013.

  1. aristoBrat

    aristoBrat Active Member

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    Since the Mini can only be used with another TiVo, it's "multi-room" from the start, no? My thought is that the MRD is already included.
     
  2. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    I think people like yourself are hung up the fact that it has a "service fee". I'm betting if the cost was simply $250 out of the gate you'd just accept that as the price and move on. But because they separate it out as a "service fee" you start to wonder what "service" this fee is for. The answer is that it's really not for a "service". It's an accounting trick. It's a way for TiVo to sell an extender while simultaneously bolstering their subscriber numbers. It also allows a lower cost of entry for those wanting to pay monthly. It's not really a "service fee" at all.
     
  3. ncbill

    ncbill Member

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    Some people buy vehicles.

    Some people lease, but whether they want to acknowledge it or not, they are ultimately paying more than those who buy.
     
  4. andrews777

    andrews777 New Member

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    Perhaps. Though it also possible I would have said "looks nice" and kept running with the setup I had since it did work. The only strongly motivating factor was that the unit we have in our bedroom, which rarely gets used, can have quite loud hard drive activity in the middle of the night for no apparent reason. It is normally fairly quiet, but I do like the idea of removing the hard drive completely from there.

    I also liked the idea of downsizing 4 cable cards to 1, but that was not enough savings by itself.

    I think it is still too pricey at $250 and I would bet they do too, which is why they split it out to make it "seem better," at least at first. People will be more hesitant to return something they have, even if they find the cost a bit too high when they sign it up for service.
     
  5. TC25D

    TC25D New Member

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    Aug 21, 2013
    I'm glad the majority of people live by the Serenity Prayer, even if they are not aware of it. Otherwise, discussion forums would need to be renamed. :D
     
  6. aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

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    You have thirty days to return the hardware or get a refund on the lifetime service.
     
  7. andrews777

    andrews777 New Member

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    True, but that still involves work on my part. I was fairly invested when the 3 Tivo Mini's arrived from Amazon via UPS and the Roamio through Walmart was on its way. I could have sent things back, but it did not seem worth it at that point.

    I think this is the same reason places like Home Depot have such a generous return policy. People probably keep a good portion of the items they don't need, which they only bought because they knew they could return them.

    Allowing easy returns can help sales from what I have read, in many product areas.
     
  8. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    So you didn't know ahead of time that they required service? That does kind of suck, but sort of your fault for not doing your research.
     
  9. prisk

    prisk New Member

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    Nov 19, 2006
    When I was talking to the sales rep at TiVo yesterday and mentioned the price of the lifetime, she said it was "already discounted." "Discounted from what?" I asked. She didn't have an answer to that. Having said that, lookig at the price of the Mini holistically, I agree with other posters that the device costs $240. This basically gets me a fully functioning TiVo with HD in any room in my house. Far cheaper than yeseterday's alternatives, where I had to buy a whole new TiVo, plus lifetime ($700 total, at least), PLUS (and this is the truly galling part), an additional $9.95 each month to Comcast. So, looked at in that perspective, it's not a bad deal.

    True, if you have an old setup like I do (S2, S3 and S4) then I'd have to buy a Roamio Plus and get the Mini's to replace the other TiVo's, then it is a substantial investment. However, the older TiVo's, all with lifetime service, have a residual value on Ebay of about $800, making my net investment about $900 to effectively put a HD TiVo in 4 rooms in my house, and that's about $225 per room. That is a bargain. AND, I save $31 a month by not paying Comcast a bunch of "additional outlet" fees each month, or $360 per year. And there is the added bonus of being able to move or stream shows to my iPad when I travel. All around, a good deal. The savings in Comcast fees pays for the entire TiVo setup in 26-30 months. And THAT is a really good deal.
     
  10. aristoBrat

    aristoBrat Active Member

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    Here's how I look at it.

    $2500 would have been around the minimum cost for your old setup (Premiere XL + three TiVo HDs), had you gotten Lifetime Service with each of them.

    $1750 should be around what your setup (Roamio Pro + three Minis) with Lifetime Service cost you.

    At the end of the day, your new setup --

    - costs 30% less for the hardware + Lifetime Service
    - saves you money monthly on cable card/multiple outlet fees
    - saves you money monthly on electrical use
    - removes a tuning adapter + associated wires/power from extra rooms
    - gives you the ability to stream/download programs to mobile devices
    - includes MoCa capability

    With your new setup, you're probably paying about 2x more for your Roamio Pro than you paid for your Premiere XL. But the new setup still comes in 30% cheaper that your old setup... because of how inexpensive the Minis are (at $250 for hardware + Lifetime Service).

    More power to your thought that they're still too pricey. Laying the numbers out, I'm personally just not seeing that.
     
  11. b_scott

    b_scott TiVo Fan

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    spoke with my wife about the possible sale / purchase scenario. Upfront a Roamio Plus and a Mini (both with lifetime) is $1050. I'd recoup maybe $750-800 from selling my two current lifetimed boxes, if that. So still out $250. However we'd pick up two tuners total, and we'd not be paying $120 a year for the extra cable outlet. After two years it'd cover the cost. Still, baby on the way in Dec and not looking to spend any money we don't have to, so for now it's on hold.
     
  12. andrews777

    andrews777 New Member

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    And that would be a main point. I didn't consult my wife closely for this (I generally handle electronics) and I believe the cost is ultimately worthwhile, but it is still too expensive.

    It is likely the business model of Tivo that is ultimately the problem and their organizational structure. Most modern thing either drastically drop in price or add significant numbers of new features, though many do both. Tivo has very minimal competition, so they can get away with a slight monopoly position.

    I also see that even their "one box" offering is missing a great deal of things that are on something like Roku and that could be their biggest long term problem.

    Different thread issue however, though it does impact my assertion that they are overpriced. They are because you don't have an alternative. Kind of like complaining about Dish or DirectTV equipment if you use them as your provider, not many options work well. (I have had Dish in the past.)

    Monopolies generally lose out to more nimble competitors, but it can take a tech shift to bring that about.
     
  13. jmpage2

    jmpage2 New Member

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    You are arguing that TiVo should be in a "race to the bottom" like a TV or BD player and that the price should plummet as a result.

    TiVo is in the service business. They design the box themselves to optimize the customer experience, similar to what Apple does.

    Even if the hardware was a cheap commodity they would still try for these service prices. Clearly customers are willing to pay for TiVo over a provider DVR because it is perceived to be better.

    A Chevy will get me to the office as well as my BMW but the BMW is worth the price premium because, for me, driving it is much more enjoyable.
     
  14. aristoBrat

    aristoBrat Active Member

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    TiVo's dropped the price of getting TiVo in additional rooms from ~$600 to $250 (not including the costs you save from not having to rent cable cards and multi-outlet fees).

    That's a 58% price drop.

    At what price point (device + Lifetime) would you consider TiVo in another room to not be expensive?
     
  15. jmpage2

    jmpage2 New Member

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    He has already implied that it should be priced competitively with boxes like Roku. In other words, boxes that offer apps but don't offer the ability to watch live or recorded TV.
     
  16. b_scott

    b_scott TiVo Fan

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    no, I didn't read that as him saying it should be priced the same as Roku (one time cost of around $100). He's saying it should do what Roku does the same or better than Roku, because of the high cost.

    Tivo uses already available guide data and tailors it to their system. Otherwise, most of Tivo that you see is the box and the apps and functions built into the physical box.
     
  17. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    This is why me and my wife keep our money separate. I buy whatever I want and she can't complain about it. She buys whatever she wants and I don't complain about it. (except when she buys godawful crap she actually wants to display in our house) Makes buying stuff like this a lot easier. :)
     
  18. Big Cab Daddy

    Big Cab Daddy New Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    How did you get lifetime transferred?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk - now Free
     
  19. aristoBrat

    aristoBrat Active Member

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    IIRC, that's a deal that applies only to Series 1s.


     
  20. b_scott

    b_scott TiVo Fan

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    chicago, il
    yeah we've done that for 8 years, but with a house and now a car, and the fact that I make over 50% more than her, we're going to start pooling here soon with the baby coming.
     

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