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Official Comcast CableCard Thread!

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by amjustice, Sep 14, 2006.

  1. husky55

    husky55 Member

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    Feb 2, 2008
    Madison, CT
    I really want to remove the HD fee but, Comcast in my area charges $20 for upgrading or downgrading services. In addition, if they messed up my M-Cards (2), there is no telling what happens next!!!

    :mad:
     
  2. pdhenry

    pdhenry Safety Pin

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    IME changes to tier or service went through easily - much less an issue than installing the card in the first place,
     
  3. bareyb

    bareyb Under Maintenance TCF Club

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    Silicon Valley
    We already have three TiVo's working here. The ONLY reason we had a Comcast box was because Comcast LIED and told us that we HAD to have one of their Boxes in order for our TiVo's to get PPV's. All lies apparently... :mad:

    I use the thing about once a month for a PPV. Now that they have the "On Demand" I can get whatever I want from there... I'm still pissed we've been paying for this Comcast DVR for 6 years when we didn't need to be... That's gotta be in the thousand dollar range by now... :mad:
     
  4. pdhenry

    pdhenry Safety Pin

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    Isn't On-Demand/PPV to TiVos a new feature, rolling out initially in the bay area? It's not as if it wasn't true 6 years ago when they told you that. Unless they insisted you needed a Comcast DVR to get Comcast PPV - a regular Comcast box has worked for that.
     
  5. bareyb

    bareyb Under Maintenance TCF Club

    25,944
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    Dec 1, 2000
    Silicon Valley
    They told us in order to view a PPV on our TiVo we HAD to have a Comcast DVR to "open the gateway" or some other BS. You had to call in but you could record PPV's to your TiVo and view them. That has been proven to be false and in fact, was never true. So basically we had it for no real reason since I never used the thing. You can imagine I'm a little peeved. Not "complain about it to Comcast" peeved, but peeved enough to complain about it here. ;)
     
  6. pdhenry

    pdhenry Safety Pin

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    Were you ever able to order a PPV on your TiVo, when you had the Comcast DVR (lets say other than within the apst 6 months).

    It has recently been proven false because they've just made it possible. It's a new thing.
     
  7. schwaggy

    schwaggy New Member

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    Feb 11, 2007
    I had been paying nothing for two CableCards in my S3 for the last 5 years.
    There was an $8 Digital Additional Outlet fee and 2 credits of $2.50 for Customer Owned Equipment. I was ok with that. I had unsuccessfully tried to argue the DAO fee a year or so ago with no luck. They wouldn't budge. That was before I familiarized myself with some of the FCC rulings. They come in handy when arguing with this corporation.
    I recently added a second S3 and low and behold all my fees had changed. I was charged $1.10 per CableCard for a total of $4.40 plus TWO $8 DAO fees but SHOCK - my credits remained the same – only 2 @ $2.50. Adding the 2nd TiVo increased my bill to an unreasonable Dollar amount. I had reached my limit and was finally ready to spend the time discussing this with as many people at Comcast as it would take. There was simply no way I was going to pay them $122.40 per year JUST to add my 2nd TiVo. I already pay through the nose for programming.
    I called and was eventually transferred 3 levels up arguing about the customer owned equipment credits and the DAO fees, constantly citing the FCC rulings. After about 30 minutes on hold, the billing "specialist" I spoke with "admitted" they had made errors in my billing and agreed to remove the $8 fee (and credit me for 12 months of it), adjust the CableCard fees to charge for only the first card in each device (at $1.10), and confirm the customer owned equipment credits.
    I just got my current statement and they did remove the DAO fee but sure enough - they added it back as a line item after removing it.
    I just got off the phone with them and had it removed and was promised it wouldn't show up again next month.
    So - to summarize, for 2 TiVo Series 3 with 2 CableCards each, I’m paying $2.20 - $1.10 per TiVo.
    The DAO fees are gone, as are the customer owned equipment credits.
    Yes – the Customer Owned Equipment credits are gone. I can easily live with this as I think those credits were to offset a bit of those ridiculously nefarious $8 fees.
    It’s absolutely crazy how many differences in pricing there are around the country and even within the same regions. Good luck to you if you have hours to spend on the phone arguing this billing practice. It worked for me – hopefully it will for you too.
     
  8. ncfoster

    ncfoster Member

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    Jan 22, 2011
    The frakkers wanted to set me up with the $8.95/mo. fee to get my second cable card. The genius behind the desk said she didn't have another code to put in her computer, and that if the charge was improper, it wouldn't be in her computer. Next step? Very frustrated that I didn't even get the card in hand before the trouble started. :(
     
  9. morac

    morac Cat God

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    NJ
    It sounds like they tried to add the cable card as a cable box. That has happened to me once, when suddenly I started getting billed for 4 cable boxes. Try phone support, billing department.
     
  10. pdhenry

    pdhenry Safety Pin

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    I think the 8.95 fee (for the second and subsequent TiVos) (less the customer-owned equipment discount) is legitimate per the various Comcast tariffs.

    The FCC requires uniform rental rates for cable cards whether the card is in a TiVo or in a set-top box, and this is Comcast's implementation of that requirement. The cable card rental fee = second box rental fee minus COE discount. The $1.10 fee is intended to be for the second card in a device that accepts more than one card.
     
  11. ncfoster

    ncfoster Member

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    Jan 22, 2011
    What about this language from the FCC site?

     
  12. pdhenry

    pdhenry Safety Pin

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    No inconsistency there. The fee you pay is for the cable card, not for the TiVo.
     
  13. ncfoster

    ncfoster Member

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    To me, the inconsistency is that if they call it a digital outlet fee or the like (when adding the second cable card, there was a "+" sign that could be expanded to show the individual charges), then they are charging you for a line-item that means nothing, and that they are not entitled to charge you for. That, combined with what I understand to be a "reasonableness" requirement for the charge...and the FCC's own suggestion that the charge is usually between between $2-4 dollars (some hint as to what is "reasonable"). Maybe I'm off-base, but I think the various rules on that page make it clear that you aren't to be extorted like that. If I turn out to be wrong, I'll probably have to resort to using my fancy new toy only for ClearQAM, which mostly defeats the point. :(
     
  14. pdhenry

    pdhenry Safety Pin

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    You're not being extorted - you're paying less than someone who has a Comcast-provided box (per FCC regulation the box fee is comprised of a card fee + a cardless box fee, and you pay the card fee while a set-top box renter pays both fees).

    If the market couldn't support it no one would get a set-top box.

     
  15. lpwcomp

    lpwcomp Active Member

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    May 6, 2002
    John's...
    You are flat out wrong. The Comcast published fees for CableCARDs, at least here (Atlanta area), is as follows:

    I don't think Comcast STBs use CableCARDs.

    The "Additional Digital Outlet Fee" may or may not be a violation of FCC regulations. What it most certainly is not is a CableCARD fee.
     
  16. ncfoster

    ncfoster Member

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    Jan 22, 2011
    This is a complete non-sequitor in a conversation such as this. Cablecards are clearly NOT a market-based response to anything, and they specifically exist as a result of regulations where there was a perceived market failure and/or monopoly conditions exist. The fact that people are not aware of their rights and/or don't know that there are superior options to the crappy boxes that cable companies provide speaks much more to the failures of third-party options to market themselves effectively and the fact that there are almost certainly not enough resources for the FCC to educate people.

    [edit]Also, keep in mind that with the exception of Tivos in some areas, the boxes people are putting cablecards into don't provide access to the full range of the cable company's offerings, specifically OnDemand. For some people, that is reason enough to get the cable company's box, as foolish as I think that assessment is in most cases.[/edit]

    The whole point of cablecards is that there was a decision made that consumers shouldn't have to put up with the way that the cable companies operate, or pay the prices that they charge for junky boxes. Also straight from the FCC site:

    As someone who has been on the satellite side of things for most of my adult life, I confess that I am not the world's foremost expert on cablecards (or I wouldn't be here asking questions), so I allow for the possibility that I am missing something, but your points are not compelling.
     
  17. Davelnlr_

    Davelnlr_ Member

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    Jan 12, 2011
    North...
    I just added a second Tivo. I was not charged an HD fee or an outlet fee, and got the $2.50 credit on the first one. Will be interesting to see what I am charged now, since a tech had to come out to "pair" the card. It was actually paired fine, but only worked one day, then reverted to clearQAM because they entered it in their system as a cablebox and not a cablecard.
     
  18. pdhenry

    pdhenry Safety Pin

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    That's the rate for the first outlet - Comcast's programming tiers include the rental for the first set-top box for those tiers that require a box. If you want that programming on a second outlet you pay the additional outlet fee for an additional set-top box.

    FCC requires Comcast to give you a price break if you have a TiVo rather than a cable co set-top box. This demonstrates that if you have a set-top box you're paying for it in the programming tier.

    The point is that the card rental must be consistently priced whether it's in their box or your TiVo.

    FCC Rule 76.1205:
    The point of the customer-owned equipment discount is that it should be allocable to the rental cost of the box. The difference between the additional box rental and the discount is the rental fee for a card in an additional outlet.
     
  19. pdhenry

    pdhenry Safety Pin

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    My entire point is that TiVo owners are not being singled out. If you want one set-top box from Comcast it comes bundled with your programming tier. If you want a second set-top box you pay $8.95 or whatever the additional outlet fee is.

    If you have one TiVo you (should) pay the tier price less the Customer Owned Equipment discount. If you have a second TiVo you (should) additonally pay the additional outlet fee less an additional COE discount.

    You don't have to like it but there's logic in how it works, when it works.

    Comcast regularly undercharges some subscribers according to their published tariff (example: Charging the $1.10 second cable card fee rather than additional outlet fee for a second TiVo, and then discounting the second outlet by $2.50, making 2 cable cards cheaper than one) but it doesn't follow that subscribers are getting ripped off when they're charged according to the tariff.
     
  20. pdhenry

    pdhenry Safety Pin

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