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SDV FAQ

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by bdraw, Jul 3, 2007.

  1. Sep 1, 2007 #321 of 2401
    lrhorer

    lrhorer Active Member

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    San...
    You need to stop and think for a minute. It doesn't matter how many people are viewing. It's how many people want to view different things at the same time. Using conventional broadcast technology, the limit is hard set by the bandwidth of the CATV plant. For most systems the usable bandwidth is going to be about 600MHz - 850MHz. Assuming all digital, this is going to be on the order of 1100 or so SD channels. With all HD content, that drops to only 300 or so channels. With that limited number, it is simply not practical to allow every subscriber to determine what gets watched or when. Forget about VOD (although TiVo pretty much makes VoD a moot issue).

    That's completely backwards, unless you are saying it's more effective outside prime-time. Even then it isn't true if the CATV operator offers Video Re-do. This allows any user to pause or rewind live TV or start watching a "live" broadcast late without having a DVR or needing to have it tuned to the channel. This very popular feature essentially turns every broadcast program into potentially thousands of "channels", since large numbers of viewers may be watching at slightly different times. The bottom line is, SDV increases capacity the moment more video streams are downloading into terminals, CableCard TVs, or DVRs than can be handled on a single drop. That number is something like 500 or so.

    Think about it. In a city of a million people or so, how difficult is it - even during prime time - even during the Superbowl - for more than 500 viewers to want to watch different channels? With SDV, even if only a single viewer wants to watch a particular program at a particular time, it's not a problem. Even if 20,000 viewers want to watch different things or at slightly different times, it's no problem. (Actually, the CATV company's servers would probably have problems delivering 20,000 simultaneous unique streams, but that's another issue.)
     
  2. Sep 1, 2007 #322 of 2401
    lrhorer

    lrhorer Active Member

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    I'd be shocked to find I am typical.

    I doubt they will be able to charge $5 each for non-premium channels. After all, they only charge $10 each for movie packages, and they include 5 or 6 commercial-free movie channels. I seriously doubt they would be able to charge more than $3 or so a la carte, if that.

    My CATV bill right now is $115, excluding Broadband service. Assuming we continue the $8 a month for the CableCards and $9.95 for the Digital Terminal in the back room, and assuming premium channels are $10 and non-premium are $3, I'd get HBO, Starz, 3 of the four PBS channels, UHD, HDNET, HDMovies, TCM, Animal Planet, USAHD, SCI-FI, Discovery, Discovery Science, and TNTHD. That's a total of $79.95, which leaves $35 for them to charge for basic service and still leave me breaking even. At that I suspect at least four of the channels I listed will be in basic service. They'll have a very hard time justifying $35 for basic service.
     
  3. Sep 1, 2007 #323 of 2401
    moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    Mission...
  4. Sep 1, 2007 #324 of 2401
    skylab

    skylab New Member

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    Jul 25, 2007
    1. No, they are going to sdv to make people pay to lease a cable box (and have the opportunity to peddle VOD and other garbage -- things they can't peddle to cablecard users).

    2. I don't care if cable uses sdv for two-way services. Great. Go all digital and do not put one-way programming on sdv.

    3. As soon as there are 300 hd channels, use sdv. Until then, all digital will work just fine.
     
  5. Sep 2, 2007 #325 of 2401
    bicker

    bicker bUU

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    I agree. It will probably be $4. That is what my calculations were based on.

    Yeah, I think you're wrong about that.

    However, you do make a good point. I think for $4, we should get a number of channels:

    $4 - CNN, CNN Headline News, Court TV, TBS, and TNT
    $4 - Disney Channel, ABC Family, Toon Disney, and SoapNet
    $4 - Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet, Discovery Health and maybe a couple of others
    $4 - MSNBC, CNBC, and Shop NBC
    $4 - AMC, USA Network, Sci-Fi, and Bravo
    $4 - A&E, History Channel, Biography Channel, National Geographic

    However, is that really still a la carte? :)
     
  6. Sep 2, 2007 #326 of 2401
    HiDefGator

    HiDefGator New Member

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    And if it were your company you could make these decisions. But it's not.
     
  7. Sep 2, 2007 #327 of 2401
    vstone

    vstone New Member

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    Martinsville...
    The channel allotment is NOT system wide, each neighborhood has its own little cable system, with the head end telling the neighborhood controller what channels to carry and tellling the STB what freq/subchannel to tune to to get a particular channel.
     
  8. Sep 2, 2007 #328 of 2401
    bicker

    bicker bUU

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    Georgia
    :up:
     
  9. Sep 2, 2007 #329 of 2401
    lrhorer

    lrhorer Active Member

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    San...
    That's completely false. It's true they do want to lease you a cable box, but it is completely false they won't be able to peddle the service to CableCard uses. Any device which will be CableCard 2.0 compatible will be able to get every service offered by SDV provided the manufacturer provided the host makes allowance for the service. VOD is right at the top of the list, and I seriously doubt any manufacturer would leave it out of their device's capabilities. One of the advantages of OCAP is it would pretty much guarantee the device would do so, but in my estimation this represents a silver lining to a potentially very large and dark cloud, rather than a sufficient argument to retain OCAP as part of CC 2.0

    Note every single company which supplies Digital Terminals to CATV companies is converting their entire product line to CableCard devices. Some still use proprietary 2-Way systems, but they all are going to be CC 1.0 very soon.

    The problem is many consumers want the 2-Way services on every channel. If the CATV companies only provide those services on certain channels, it will represent a very real counter-selling point for the satellite providers or competitor CATV companies where they are available.

    No, it won't.
     
  10. Sep 2, 2007 #330 of 2401
    routerman

    routerman New Member

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    Austin, Texas
    I agree that turning off analog would gain some HD channel space. I believe 2 HDs fit in the space of 1 analog. In Austin, TW has removed several analog channels (23 and 51) and put HD channels in their place. My guess is that they have to wait for contracts to expire before they drop and/or move a channel to digital. Maybe SDV is a way to offer lower viewed HD channels and the removal of analog is for the high viewed programming?

    I fail to understand how SDV is the most convenient way for cable companies to continue to collect SDB fees? Wouldn't dropping analog channels be easier and also move more subscribers to STB's? The number of analog only customers has got to dwarf the Tivo S3, Tivo HD and cablecard customers. I would think that each analog channel dropped would generate more angry phone calls than all of the cable card customers combined.

    It seems to me that putting lots of equipment near the customers home and maintaining this equipment has to be much more expensive than taking an analog signal and moving it to digital. In many cases, I think that many of these channels are already digital so all it might take is a swap out of equipment. My guess is that SDV is one of many ways the cable companies will be competing with satellite to provide more HD channels.
     
  11. Sep 2, 2007 #331 of 2401
    skylab

    skylab New Member

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    Jul 25, 2007
    I'm sorry, you're wrong. I'm not talking about the future generation of cablecards, I'm talking about what is available now and why cable doesn't want it to work. First, contrary to your post, the current generation fo cablecards can't receive VOD, PPV, etc. Cable despises one-way cablecards because it can't peddle two-way VOD, PPV, etc. services that it has spent boatloads on in the last decade. Cable also despises one-way cablecards because it allows companies like Tivo and TVGuide to develop their own services, and, gasp, even put through ads using the cable system that is beyond the money grubbing hands of the cable companies.

    Cablecard 2.0 will not see the light of day if cable can help it -- every reasonable proposal offered by the CEA has been met with resistance. Cable wants to control the interface you use to watch programming and control what you are able to do with the programming (like archive to blu-ray, DVHS, etc.). Of course, Tivo and the CEA will not agree with this. If cable gets its way then there will be no competitive market for navigation devices because these navigation devices will not, and will actually be prevented from, having features superior to a leased box.

    Consumers don't want or need two-way services from the cable companies.
     
  12. Sep 2, 2007 #332 of 2401
    skylab

    skylab New Member

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    Jul 25, 2007
    How original.
     
  13. Sep 3, 2007 #333 of 2401
    ah30k

    ah30k Active Member

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    All CableCARDs can receive two-way services so I think it is ironic that you start off a post saying someone is wrong and follow-up with incorrect statements.

    You might want to start with this http://www.opencable.com/primer/cablecard_primer.html and in particular the quote...
     
  14. Sep 3, 2007 #334 of 2401
    bicker

    bicker bUU

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    Is it safe to say that one of the big things cable companies give up by allowing this new dongle is the ability to earn revenue from advertisements placed on the program guide? If true, that clarifies why they would want to charge a significant amount per month for it.
     
  15. Sep 3, 2007 #335 of 2401
    jfh3

    jfh3 New Member

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    Assuming that you actually believe this, and aren't trying to play devil's advocate -- it may be safe to say, but it wouldn't be accurate.

    It's in the cable company's best interest to support a method for UDCP devices to operate as a consumer would reasonably expect in an SDV system, since their alternative is that they could lose that customer to the competition (e.g. satellite).

    For those customers, they've already lost the eyeballs on the cable guide anyway, so there's nothing left to lose by supporting the dongle.
     
  16. Sep 3, 2007 #336 of 2401
    bicker

    bicker bUU

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    Georgia
    So are you saying that they don't give up revenue from advertisements placed on the program guide if they let TiVo get around OCAP for two-way services? Neat trick.

    Get a grip.
     
  17. Sep 3, 2007 #337 of 2401
    jfh3

    jfh3 New Member

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    Apr 15, 2004
    Denver area
    You really need to go read the latest NTCA FCC filing - you obviously don't understand the either the dongle solution or why the CE industry is so opposed to OCAP.

    And yes, they don't give up revenue from the advertisements, because they don't get it in the first place - you can't give up what you don't have.
     
  18. Sep 3, 2007 #338 of 2401
    skylab

    skylab New Member

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    Jul 25, 2007

    Show me a cablecard 1.0 device that does two-way services like sdv. For all intents and purposes the navigation devices are one-way.
     
  19. Sep 3, 2007 #339 of 2401
    ah30k

    ah30k Active Member

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    Your first comment (which I responded to) was that the CableCARDs are not two-way. Now you are talking about devices/hosts? Which is it? I can't discuss this with you if you keep changing your tune.

    With respect to correct and incorrect, I prefer to stay away from intents and purposes and stick to the facts.
     
  20. Sep 3, 2007 #340 of 2401
    cableguy763

    cableguy763 New Member

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    Oct 29, 2006
    Austin
    I could show you about ten thousand SA cable boxes released after 7-1-07 that work two way with cablecard 1.0. They are multistream cards, but still 1.0.
     

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