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Old 09-20-2006, 01:13 PM   #211
Gregor
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Update:

Things work much better when you go stand in line at the local office.

When I called Tivo's tech support line, they wanted a local # to call. I couldn't find a local number for Comcast (even Tivo knows the guys at the 1-800-Comcast# are worse than useless) so I decided to go down to their office and see what could be done.

After some discussion of Tivo and the difference between it and a television, the counter person went to find their tech manager Jim, and I explained what I wanted to do. He explained that he wasn't aware of a new Tivo and didn't know if it could be supported, so he took the model # and when I could be available, and went off to talk to his "cable card guru".He took the model # and went off for a few moments. He returned and said he'd talked to their training department, who is just getting word of this new unit. They're not sure if it can be supported immediately and he characterized the problem "like trying to run Mac software on a PC".

I now have another appt on Monday with the "guru" and we'll see what happens.

Stay Tuned!
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Old 09-20-2006, 01:25 PM   #212
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Yesterday I called the local Comcast number and talked to a CSR that indicated I could pick up the cards at the local office and install them myself. So I drove up to the local office only to find out that they would not give them to me there and had to schedule an install. Not completely surprising since about two years ago when I picked up my first CC for my HDTV, they had to send a tech out to install it, actually they had four guys at my house then, the driveway looked like a Comcast convention.

The bigger issue I have is the claimed $38/card install fee the counter woman quoted me. I seem to remember something much less for the last card, like $12.95 or something. Additionally, I have not been charged monthly for the CC in the TV, but they are claiming that each of these new cards will have a $5 card rental fee and a $6.95 additional outlet fee.

Hopefully, the installation goes correctly on Friday and I will be able to sort out the billing after the fact. It would be much more customer friendly if Comcast would set and enforce corporate pricing and installation policies.

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Old 09-20-2006, 01:44 PM   #213
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wow.... I don't have a S3... but reading this whole thread made me hate comcast even more then I already do.. (dispite still bring a customer of theirs.) I can't stand them
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Old 09-20-2006, 02:03 PM   #214
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Comcast dude just left. Was his first S3 - was interested, asked if he could take a copy of the "for cablecard installers" sheet.

Cards needed a second initialisation, but after that both work fine.

They did put a hold on my internet connection though, that I had to call in about later to get fixed. Grrr.

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Old 09-20-2006, 02:15 PM   #215
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Comcast sent a contractor to my place, who doesn't install CableCards. The supervisor missed the two lines of CableCards listed on the requisition, and the note stating it was going in a TiVo, and instead sent a digital set top box, no CableCards, and a contractor instead of a technician.

Now I'm on hold trying to reschedule an appointment (I work 2 weeks straight without a day off -- lovely). I'm trying to persuade someone to just give me the cards, and if I can't get them working, then I'll request a technician.

Something tells me that between my issues with CableCards and Series 3 shipping delays, God does not want me owning a Series 3.
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Old 09-20-2006, 02:44 PM   #216
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Comcast, westford did a nice job for me

Count me as one of the positive experiences. I called Comcast, in Westford, MA, said I wanted two more cable cards (I already have one in my TV), and they said no problem.

The tech came today, and installed it without any problems. I helped him with the Tivo UI (he had never seen a series 3, not surprisingly) a little, but mostly he just had to read numbers to a tech support rep at comcast. It's silly that they had to send a tech to do it, I could have easily done it with the same phone number.

The whole process took about 45 minutes, and now my new S3 is working fine.

As an aside, I called Tivo to transfer my lifetime service from my old Series 1 Tivo. I bought it in 1999, and it has been watching TV for me continuously for the 83 months since then. Apparently, since that unit is so old, there is a grandfather clause and I was able to transfer my service to the series 3 for FREE. That's right, $0.00.

Hopefully, I'll get another 7 years of service from this one. :-)

So if you have a very old Tivo from which you have NEVER transferred lifetime service, make sure you ask for this option!
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Old 09-20-2006, 02:45 PM   #217
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So what do you know my wife just called me from home, installer just showed up and has only one Cable Card. How could I have guessed this would happen. I cant begin to explain how stupid Comcast emplyees are. The installer even tells my wife he did an install yesterday and went out with 2 cards and wondered why he was only there with one today. So now im on the phone with comcast and will have to re explain my life story about a Tivo what it is what it does and why you the CSR do not know anything. You got to love em hey ?
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Old 09-20-2006, 03:19 PM   #218
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Washington DC request for install experience

I just received my Series 3 from UPS and called for installation. The Comcast representative was very helpful and polite. She did initially claim that, to receive HD service, I would need an HD cable box. I told her that I thought that installing the cable cards in the TiVo would be sufficient. SHe then asked me for the TiVo model number, and said that they only installed cable cards in certain kinds of TiVos. My model number, TCD648250B, qualified. I'm scheduled for Friday, October 6, with a 9-12 window.

Costs: $20.95 for installation (one-time),
$10 per month for two cable cards (even though it's only one outlet)
less $3.95 per month for returned cable box.
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Old 09-20-2006, 03:33 PM   #219
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Called local office Monday and Tech showed up today. First word was WOW we have NEVER installed these in a TIVO. First card was installed and info on the screen was up in about 3 minutes. 3 minutes later we go the please wait acquiring channel information. This went on for about 5 minutes then a blank grayish screen showed up. All channels under 98 worked fine but none of the upper channels worked. The tech ask for a second hit to be sent out. We waited for a few minutes. Still nothing. He called a friend that had just installed 2 cable cards into a TV and he had almost the same problem. Digital and HD channels took multiple hits to get them to come in. Cable card status showed 0 segments left to download and state was wait to start. At this time he hooked up his test set to the cable line to check signal. Low signal, so we trace down a splitter and remove it, much better signal. Calling for a re-hit again as we don’t have any digital channels. Checking Network setup and all looks good there, but no under test channels we get No channels. 40 minutes later we are going to swap the first card out. At least he brought 3 cards with him. Calling dispatch back to have them setup the 2nd card. Quote from Dispatch “I hate cable cards”, tech “me too” Double checking with dispatch the verify the settings. We are now over 1 hour with no digital or HD channels. No dice on digital channels on card 1 so he wants to install card 2 and then wait for the supervisors meeting to get out. I am fine with that. All the sudden Tivo blanks out and jumps to ESPN-HD. Install the 2nd cable card and started guided setup again. Now back to work I will see what is up after I get back…… 2:30 lunch I need to go back.
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Old 09-20-2006, 03:37 PM   #220
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Arlington, VA Experience

I called the general Comcast 800 number and explained that I had a S3 that had two cable cards in one device. They didn't flinch at all and offered me a next-day appointment for installation. The S3 just arrived today and I'm not available until Friday, so I made the appointment for then and we'll see how this all turns out.

The agent said that is no charge for the service call and no charge for either of the cards. I repeated that back to the agent and he confirmed that there would no charge. I'm not sure how that's possible, so I'll be checking out my next bill to see what really happened.
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Old 09-20-2006, 03:55 PM   #221
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rabaileyva, I think the difference between your experience and mine shows how thoroughly different Comcast's policies can be across jurisdictions. We're in adjacent towns, but you're getting a free install and cards immediately, while I'm paying $21 plus $10 per month and waiting two weeks.
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Old 09-20-2006, 04:58 PM   #222
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rabaileyva
I called the general Comcast 800 number and explained that I had a S3 that had two cable cards in one device. They didn't flinch at all and offered me a next-day appointment for installation. The S3 just arrived today and I'm not available until Friday, so I made the appointment for then and we'll see how this all turns out.

The agent said that is no charge for the service call and no charge for either of the cards. I repeated that back to the agent and he confirmed that there would no charge. I'm not sure how that's possible, so I'll be checking out my next bill to see what really happened.
Who did you speak with at Comcast? I called their 800 # and was told flatly that "Comcast does not support cable cards in Tivo" by a supervisor. She did say she would research the matter and get back to me, so I'm expecting a call back, say when hell freezes over.

The local Comcast office was much more accomodating and after much discussion with a tech manager, agreed to schedule an appointment with their "cable card guru" on Monday, warning all the while that "this may not work".
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Old 09-20-2006, 05:01 PM   #223
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agentbillo
As an aside, I called Tivo to transfer my lifetime service from my old Series 1 Tivo. I bought it in 1999, and it has been watching TV for me continuously for the 83 months since then. Apparently, since that unit is so old, there is a grandfather clause and I was able to transfer my service to the series 3 for FREE. That's right, $0.00.
Wow- did they also extend your Series 1 subscription for a year???
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Old 09-20-2006, 05:24 PM   #224
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For those of you not getting satisfaction from Comcast, call one of the executive assistants at their corporate headquarters. It's a long distance number, but well worth it. 215-665-1700

When the contractor didn't bring CableCards, I was told it would be Monday before I could get an appointment. One call to their corporate headquarters and someone is coming tomorrow morning at 8 am.
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Old 09-20-2006, 05:24 PM   #225
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Originally Posted by Gregor
Who did you speak with at Comcast? I called their 800 # and was told flatly that "Comcast does not support cable cards in Tivo" by a supervisor.
I think you get different call centers for 1-800-COMCAST depending on where you call from. When I call in, I get people in a call center less than 20 miles from my house.
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Old 09-20-2006, 05:32 PM   #226
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Originally Posted by geekmedic
For those of you not getting satisfaction from Comcast, call one of the executive assistants at their corporate headquarters. It's a long distance number, but well worth it. 215-665-1700

When the contractor didn't bring CableCards, I was told it would be Monday before I could get an appointment. One call to their corporate headquarters and someone is coming tomorrow morning at 8 am.
Thanks, that's my next phone call if my appointment on Monday doesn't pan out.
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Old 09-20-2006, 05:45 PM   #227
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Sorry it didn't work out for you Gregor, I'm kind of glad now it will be about a month until I can order my Series 3, Hopefully by then the cable card issues will have ironed themselves out.
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Old 09-20-2006, 05:47 PM   #228
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I think so. Apparently the one I have is the first one in the area. I'll have to leave a note for the installer at the office, as the one cable card I have is apparently bad.

We'll see what happens Monday.
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Old 09-20-2006, 05:56 PM   #229
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I guess I can be considered a late adopter since I didn't place my VIP order until 9/14 (gasp!) and opted for ground shipping (double gasp!). Given that I won't receive my S3 until tomorrow (9/21), I really should have just sat this one out and waited for the S4.

But anyway...

Just wanted to report an absolutely flawless card pickup from the Seattle Comcast office on Aurora. Even though I don't have the S3 yet, I was nearby so I thought I'd stop in and see if they'd give me the cards. I got the impression that they've handled several S3 people before me so everything went quickly and smoothly. She even handed me two cards before I told her that I needed to have two of them.

All fingers are crossed that tomorrow's installation will be just as easy.
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Old 09-20-2006, 06:41 PM   #230
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I guess I can be considered a late adopter since I didn't place my VIP order until 9/14 (gasp!) and opted for ground shipping (double gasp!). Given that I won't receive my S3 until tomorrow (9/21), I really should have just sat this one out and waited for the S4.
Thats funny I ordered mine on the 12th and its coming tomorrow too, oh and I elected for 2nd day shipping, oh yeah thats probably because they screwed up my order. LOVE IT!
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Old 09-20-2006, 07:17 PM   #231
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I had been browsing this thread while on the phone with a CSR for Comcast here in Chicago. After a few conversations between the CSR and the supervisor, I got this pricing:

First card free.
Second card $5.99 per month.

$15.99 per card activation/installation.

I have my appointment scheduled for Tuesday and will report back (time permitting) if my bill shows anything different.
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Old 09-20-2006, 07:22 PM   #232
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Comcast's independent contractor installer showed up at 3 PM for a 1-3 PM appointment. I guess I was lucky.

In any case, he had no clue about Tivo at all, so I gave him a bit of an education. He thought that the Comcast DVR was great and was concerned about installing 2 cable card because one alone was always extremely difficutl. We walked through the cable card installation together. I controlled the Series 3 remote and prompts and he spoke to the office. We set up cc one and tested it, and then set up cc two and tested it.

I ran the guided set-up again and went back to work. After work, I turned on the system and, low and behold, all works perfectly.

The only issue that I had was when the installer got put on hold on his telephone by Comcast and he complained that "if this did not get completed quickly, then he would have to leave as he had 3 more installs to complete. A bit of massaging his ego kept him in place. Apparently, Comcast schedules 4 appointments in each 2 hour block here in the Boston area. So, please have some patience and empathy with your Comcast installer.

Again, this guy did not know too much about the cable cards, so I suspect that the cards that come with the installer are the real key to a successful installation. Luckily, the two he brought to my house worked perfectly once authorized.

Stan
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Old 09-20-2006, 09:29 PM   #233
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When I pointed out that the HD DVR going back had dual tuners and I wasn't being charged for a second line - he said - well you were being charged $9.95 a month for it - and apparently the $9.95 covered the second line too.

I think it's mostly BS - but that's what I heard.
Not mostly BS - totally BS.

The $9.95 was for the DVR rental - there was no outlet fee because it was the first box on your package and the digital packages include the box for "free".
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Old 09-20-2006, 09:43 PM   #234
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If you are calling 800-COMCAST, remember to ask the CSR which call center they are in. There are 25 (IIRC) across the country and I think one in Canada. Although they generally try to route calls to the closest to you geographically, if there is high call volume, you could be talking to a rep that knows little about your area.
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Old 09-20-2006, 10:03 PM   #235
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MISSING_PROGRAM_REKEY (and customer "Service")

My install experience so far...

I pick up 2 cards yesterday at my local Comcast office, no questions asked.

Tonight, I call the number provided, and get connected to a very rude woman who basically tells me that the local Comcast people are idiots for giving me the cards, and that I MUST have a professional install. I asked why I couldn't do it.

She said, "well, they have to hook it up to a computer-thingy".

I said, "I don't think so, you just have to send a signal down to activate it".

She says "Well, that's not going to work, let me transfer you to the cable internet department!". Obviously at this point she was already tired of me.

So, I get connected to a very nice guy in the internet department, and try as he might he was unable to get me fully configured. He sent the initialization signal multiple times, but I still keep coming up with "MISSING_PROGRAM_REKEY".

He tries totally removing the cards from my account and starting over, same thing. So now I sit here waiting for a "tech" to show up Friday between 8 - 12. Hopefully he will know what he's doing.
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Old 09-21-2006, 08:35 AM   #236
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Old 09-21-2006, 08:40 AM   #237
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Originally Posted by daveinchicago
I had been browsing this thread while on the phone with a CSR for Comcast here in Chicago. After a few conversations between the CSR and the supervisor, I got this pricing:

First card free.
Second card $5.99 per month.

$15.99 per card activation/installation.

I have my appointment scheduled for Tuesday and will report back (time permitting) if my bill shows anything different.
Call back and get them to take the second card fee off, explain that it isnt really a second outlet and that both cards are going to the same box. There is no reason you should have to pay an extra monthly charge for that card
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Old 09-21-2006, 09:22 AM   #238
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Hm, noticed one small problem with my cable cards. They map the channel for INHD to NFLNET HD. The mapping for the NFL channel itself is fine. Bah. No doubt it's a mapping issue, so I'll have to convince Comcast it's their problem. It's the only such problem I've found so far though.

(Not least because I value INHD more than any sports channel)

Chris.
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Old 09-21-2006, 09:38 AM   #239
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Two cards from Comcast New England (New Haven, CT area)... first is free, second is $2.75/month. $15 install fee.

Both cards are working great. I did have some glitches in the installation (mainly from getting them to bring the cards). See the Comcast Connecticut thread if you're interested.
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Old 09-21-2006, 10:47 AM   #240
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Went to Comcast. Dropped off the comcast digital hd pvr, picked up two cablecards. No charge for either cards, no monthly fee for them. Went home, powered up the S3 with only one card loaded, did the guided setup. Rebooted the unit, popped in the second card. I called Comcast to do a reset of the cablecards, the guy did that, rebooted the S3, all is well.

I don't see that anybody here did a self-install. It's about as easy as it gets.

The lady giving me the cards asked bout why someone would spend $800 for a box when you can rent theirs for $10. Also, she asked what do you do if the box dies, does Tivo replace it for free? In defense of Comcast, I have had two boxes die, and they just replace them. It's hard to argue with the logic that it is more cost-effective to rent the Comcast box. Without Tivo-To-Go and Multi-Room-Viewing, about the only thing I can do with this is stream audio and pictures, but my Xbox can do that already, and the Xbox does it better: it can stream music and pictures at the same time...the pictures are also pseudo-animated.
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