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SDV FAQ

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

  1. mikeyts

    mikeyts Stream Warrior

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    TiVo is virtually the only device that can use this thing now, but conceivably new, low-end DCR devices could be designed to be able to use it from the beginning. I think that's the suggestion. "No, we don't need to spend a ton of time and money completing the definition of and providing compliance to the CEA's proposed 'Digital Cable Ready Plus' standard--with this simply little device, which we've already defined and prepared for distribution with the aid of a few key CEA members, the OEMs can make future low-end products which can tune SDV services without having to feature an expensive OCAP platform. (It doesn't address IPPV and VOD like DCR+ does, but of course SDV's the important thing)".
    "The check's in the mail", will only keep your landlord from kickin' your ass out for a very short time. They're trying to deliver on this almost before the FCC can require it in order to make it the solution of choice, since it'll be a solution that's already available or very close to being available. I still think that the FCC will need to require it, forcing the smaller providers to stock and provide the things.
     
  2. mikeyts

    mikeyts Stream Warrior

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    Every DOCSIS modem I've seen for years has had a functioning USB 2.0 port. Cable modems are a lot closer to being physically a match for what's needed than any tuning STB, which have unnecessary graphics chips and audio chips and IR receivers and way too much memory. If Moto's using the DCT-700 as a base for development instead of a cable modem, it's because the Tuning Resolver is being engineered by the tuner STB team and they're a separate group from the networking equipment team who are already familiar with writing code for the DCT-700.
    Oh, I am absolutely certain that the cable equipment OEMs have detailed internal schedules which feature versions of the Tuning Resolver as a deliverable, allocating resources to the production of it. You can't run a company on vague ideas of when products will be ready. They know exactly when they expect it to be done and refine that date all the time. I'll bet that they share that estimate with the cable providers, but giving that exact date to the public is another matter. You don't do that unless you have to and they don't have to. It might give us all the warm fuzzies, but there's no upside for the OEMs.
     
  3. CharlesH

    CharlesH Member

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    I was assuming that the STB already had the proprietary software to handle VOD and PPV, and what would have to be done is replace the GUI for those functions by a standardized API over USB.
     
  4. snowbunny

    snowbunny New Member

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    Austin, TX
    My older S2 (single tuner) lifetime TiVo is having serious trouble with its hard drive (upgraded hard drive, no problems until now). With the dongle repeatedly slipping schedule, I have no idea what to do -- try to have the S2 repaired? Buy a new S2 (but what about my lifetime)? Buy a new S3/HD with lifetime, which will mean losing many SDV channels? I'm getting repeated complaints from the kids and my visiting relatives about not being able to receive channels on the S3 -- it's simply that bad with as many SDV channels as we have (and we're not trying to even watch HD yet).

    I'd really hoped the dongle would be on time as reported last fall... apparently not. We do not have any other competitor in the area for cable so are at the mercy of TWC.

    Would you pay to have the S2 repaired if possible, and if not, which S2 would you buy?
     
  5. moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    Mission...
    Please cite where the dongle (AKA tuning resolver) was PROMISED by anyone to be available last fall? AFAIK the only information available was a somewhat vague Q2 2008 that Motorola MAY have something ready to go. Plus I've seen no information from Scientific Atlanta (Cisco) on what their solution may look like or when it may be available.
     
  6. mikeyts

    mikeyts Stream Warrior

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    San Diego,...
    There has been no published "schedule" to be "slipped". The only thing we have is an estimate that at least some version of it should be being distributed to customers by the end of the second quarter of calendar '08. Unless every company which plans to manufacture a version of the Tuning Resolver has chosen to assign it to a team of 2 or 3 of their least talented engineers, that was a pretty generous estimate. Until we get some official notification that no version of it will be ready before the end of June, there has been no schedule "slip".

    If I were you, snowbunny, I might consider leasing a TWC DVR in the interrim. (I'm actually considering leasing a non-DVR STB to get access to all the pay and subscription HD VOD that's starting to become available). Where are you located that SDV has become such a big problem (consider placing your location in your forum user profile).
     
  7. jrm01

    jrm01 New Member

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    Does the Tuner Resolver have to be specific for SA vs. Motorola? I thought that it would only be interacting with the host (Tivo) and the neighborhood hub (which I thought was third party, not Mot or SA). Since it would be independant from cablecard and headend gear does it matter?
     
  8. mikeyts

    mikeyts Stream Warrior

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    It's gonna have to speak the network SDV protocol, and whereas some of that stuff is by third parties, its still proprietary and there are multiple versions in use.
     
  9. classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

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    Ontario Canada.
    In a nut shell, it is SA or Motorola hardware provided by your cable provider. By it being from the respective manufacturer of their existing cable gear, it will be somewhat easy for a provider to integrate into their system.
     
  10. snowbunny

    snowbunny New Member

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    Jun 10, 2007
    Austin, TX
    My original quote was that the last estimate I saw for dongle availability was *from* last fall, and the projection was Q1 2008.

    I'm in Austin so am hard hit by SDV. I want to scream when my mother asks me why one TV can't tune in her favourite channels.... but the other one (with the dying TiVo) can.... I keep telling her that no, it's not broken, it's a technical incompatibility that will be fixed but I don't know when. Lather, rinse, repeat.
     
  11. mikeyts

    mikeyts Stream Warrior

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    Again, it'd be interesting to know where you saw that estimate. We're a pretty eagle-eyed group; little is published online on this subject that escapes us and no official (or unofficial for that matter) estimate of Q1CY08 "dongle" availability was ever reported here.

    TiVo made their announcement in this this PR, issued jointly with the National Cable & Telecommunications Association on November 26th. ("Cable operators will make the new adapters available for TiVo customers in the second quarter of 2008. Cable operators and TiVo will work cooperatively to alert TiVo customers about availability of the new adapter"). Prior to that, there was no announcement of when it would become available as made by any of the involved parties (cable industry, CableLabs or TiVo). It was actually the first real confirmation that they were just going to go ahead and make and distribute the thing, without waiting for the FCC to respond to the CEA's request for "DCR Plus" and their objections to it. Prior to this announcement it was just something they'd suggested to the FCC as a solution to one of the CEA's complaints.
     
  12. menos

    menos New Member

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    Mark down the Oklahoma City, OK market as one of those that Cox is releasing new HD channels as 'future SDV deployment'. No indication when they will actually go SDV but all new channels, including the 3 released yesterday, will NOT be available for cable card customers.

    :(
     
  13. lrhorer

    lrhorer Active Member

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    Yeah, maybe. It's certainly possible, but I don't find it likely. After all, after reliability issues, the #1 complaint of CATV subscribers for the last 30 years has been they don't want additional boxes laying around their house. I find it unlikely the receiver manufacturers will ignore this, especially in light of their stance on separable security in the first place. The bottom line is, from the average subscriber's viewpoint, why purchase a TV that requires a CableCard and a box, when an even cheaper set just requires a box? It seems unlikely to me this point would be lost on receiver manufacturers, especially since it saves them money, as well.

    Why bother at all? The consumer doesn't care whihc box he has to have, merely that he has to have one. The receiver manufacturer is much better served by simply not providing CableCard abilities at all.

    In addition, while a full featured DVR like the TiVo makes features like VOD and a number of other interactive features mostly moot, this is not true for a simple receiver.

    Any analogy can be carried too far, and this one has definitely been stretched beyond it's limits. A better one is the landlord who says the super will be by next week to fix the leaky faucets. What are the tenants going to do if he doesn't? Move? Sue the landlord over a leaky faucet? I've seen snow jobs on CATV subscribers from the installer all the way up to the CEO, and I would not be shocked if this weren't another one.

    I think the odds of the FCC coming up with a ruling on this any time in the near future are exceedingly low. I could easily be wrong, of course. We'll see.
     
  14. lrhorer

    lrhorer Active Member

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    OK, maybe I should have specified SDV systems, but since we're talking about SDV, I had more or less assumed the SDV system was a given. More systems currently supplying SDV are using Scientific Atlanta than Motorola, which means my original point still stands. More than half of us already left in the cold by the introduction of SDV channels will still be left in the cold by the introduction of a Motorola dongle.
     
  15. ah30k

    ah30k Active Member

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    You assume that the only people here concerned about SDV are those who are currently being impacted. There are many who are here out of impending SDV losses.
     
  16. mfogarty5

    mfogarty5 New Member

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    Your are overlooking OCAP and one of the benefits of OCAP is that the consumer won't have to have a box at all. In fact, Panasonic is releasing an OCAP plasma later this year. While I understand that the cable company software will be downloaded to the plasma, the point is no box is required, only a CableCard.

    If one is satisfied with the cable company UI, why rent an ugly box when you can get away with renting a card?

    Taking the Panasonic/Comcast example one step further, what if subscribers could download the Comcast TiVo software right to their new OCAP tv?
     
  17. lrhorer

    lrhorer Active Member

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    Well, none of mine do, and I have several. Either way, however, providing a USB port is no big deal.

    Which is why I suggested this as a viable method of coming up with the dongle. Either way, it's not difficult - just a kludge.

    Which could easily be, "When Hell Freezes over", and "not a flippin' brass farthing". I'm not saying it is, mind you.

    It depends on the company and their perceived benefits from doing so versus their perceived risk if they fail to meet a deadline. Do I really need to point to how many promised deadlines companies like Microsoft, Apple, Sony, or for that matter TiVo have released to the public? Or how many have been missed? I can think of at least 3 major published deadlines missed by Cisco and at least 2 by Microsoft without even trying. There's a reason why the term "vaporware" exists. It can even be strategic to announce a deadline one knows one cannot meet in an attempt to pre-empt customers from abandoning an incumbent platform when a competitor is gong to beat one to the draw on a new system.

    I'm not saying you're wrong about either Motorola or Scientific Atlanta, just that not every company does business that way, and it's entirely their choice that they do. What you call "warm fuzzies", many marketing and PR executives call "The Golden Goose", and while a company must always balance risk against potential gain, any company who ignores the "warm fuzzies" of the end user (whether they are direct customers or not) does so at risk of extreme financial peril. I'll admit, however, in this case they have little to lose. The end user is locked into whatever technology the vendor feels like producing.
     
  18. ah30k

    ah30k Active Member

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    Anyone wonder where TiVo is in their schedule for their software that needs to interact with the dongle?
     
  19. lrhorer

    lrhorer Active Member

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    No, I'm not. My point was simply a large number - more than half of all extant Sereis III class subscribers - won't be helped by a Motorola dongle. It's also true of a large fraction of those who are not currently impacted but will be.
     
  20. ah30k

    ah30k Active Member

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    You can sigh all you want, but I call it like I see it. In your post here you said more than half of us are on SA systems (or something like that). If the extant S3 users are evenly distributed across the cable population and the S3 user population is represented by this forum then your answer is wrong.

    Just say that you meant to type in that most of the currently affected users are on SA and then we agree.
     

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