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Supreme Court decsion may effect Tivo?

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by eboydog, Apr 21, 2014.

  1. telemark

    telemark New Member

    Nov 12, 2013
    Out of home streaming is via IP. In home to 2nd screen devices is via IP.
    3rd party content partners are IP, like HBOgo. Internet customers require IP over the cable plant.

    Those things will never change.

    Video-QAM works fine, but if you're going to expand your services to more devices, you'll have to keep 2 technologies forever, or you can choose one that can do both. The amount of headend equipment is cut in half. Even better, new services in the future would not require new headend equipment, but are just software services living in some server way way up the city or regional, maybe even national network..

    Replacement box costs?
    Most TV's sold today can decode mpeg4 and have IP stacks. As well as all the tablets and smart phones. And all the streamer boxes. This is actually reduced box costs almost free, the customer paid for them.

    Anyway, I don't think the cost is an interesting question. They look at it as what services can they offer to increase revenue. Advertiser or Customer revenue.

    Even the most basic, how is Comcast going to roll out more OnDemand screens? Switched Video-QAM and an IP request channel? Or an all IP channel?

    If Comcast doesn't move into these segments, the customer will go to Apple or Amazon and Comcast would lose that revenue.

    There's a whole other topic of ad insertion, I'm not going into.
  2. JosephB

    JosephB Member

    Nov 19, 2010
    Birmingham, AL
    Of course it will be a slow process. No one is claiming Comcast is going to replace 60-70 million set top boxes next month. Heck, Charter is even working on a new UI/software system for their boxes that delivers the guide over a QAM instead of IP based.

    These things are transitory, though. The new boxes can receive their bits whether they're an MPEG stream directly encoded in QAM or whether they are delivered over a DOCSIS carrier. The point isn't what are they going to do over the next 5 years, it's what are they doing over the next 10-15?

    Bingo. Why keep the QAM linear video system going when you could just put an "app" on every STB and use the same system for TVs that is used for iPads.
  3. Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

    Oct 30, 2003
    Yeah right. Comcast is going to drag their heels for another god knows how many years on MPEG-4 and plant upgrades, and maybe eventually do those. At this point, it almost looks like they're never going to upgrade some of the archaic 650mhz plants like mine, and will instead use MPEG-4 to cram more channels onto a 1980's-era system instead of actually going out there and doing the upgrade that they need to do. At the rate they upgrade, IP is several decades off if they ever do it. They still have to get through MPEG-4, plant rebuilds, node splitting and maybe SDV before they even get to IP, and once they have all of those, they will have all the advantages of IP for a lot less money, so why on earth would they then rip everything out and do IP? It's an illogical argument.

    Mobile has jack sh*t to do with how they distribute their cable TV service. They are two completely separate systems that share a wire. The current platform allows streaming video just fine.

    MPEG-4 would be relatively quick and easy (for a cable company) like the analog transition was. They would probably tier it, starting with premium channels, and trickling down a few channels at a time through Preferred and Starter so that not everyone who has somehow held on to an ancient HD box would be surprised at the same time when HD channels are disappearing.

    System capacity. They could go to 5 or 6 HDs per QAM with MPEG-4, versus the they get now, and improve video quality in the process.

    Those services are totally irrelevant to IP delivery of the cable TV product. They don't share the same streams, and they can't share the same streams. A 6-9mbps MPEG-4 stream delivered over IP can't be used for an iPad or laptop, as it's too high of a bitrate, and it's not adaptive. Secondly, it has no way to get from the cable side of things to the internet modem and through the user's router. The cable side uses IP multicast, and is a closed system, the internet side is an open system that uses IP unicast. Two different, incompatible systems. Look at U-Verse. WatchESPN is completely separate from ESPN the cable channel, WatchESPN is internet traffic, ESPN is cable traffic, and they are treated completely separately, even though they share the wire from the VRAD to the RG.

    And if something in the house re-creates a new stream through re-encoding, well you can do that now with QAM.

    They are two completely separate services. Streaming video uses servers on the internet, not head end equipment at the cable head end.

    AT&T did briefly do the XBOX 360 experiment with U-Verse, but other than that, none of those could handle a U-Verse stream. They aren't designed for it, and AT&T wouldn't give up control anyways. It's the same for this mythical IP system on Comcast.

    Plant upgrades, node splits, and MPEG-4. If they are running a jam-packed 1ghz plant, then SDV is the next step. IP is not needed in any of that, as SDV gets you the same advantages, as long as it works reliably. Node splits and SDV of course complement each other, since SDV makes so much more of the capacity re-usable.

    They are already doing all of this stuff on an archaic MPEG-2 QAM system. They can go to MPEG-4 with QAM, get more capacity in the mean time, and be able to keep most of their existing equipment.

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