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Old 12-13-2006, 03:35 PM   #1
crabell
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Angry Company Won't provide Cable Card

I just got my new S3 and called my Cable Company to coordinate the installation of the Cable Cards.
To make a long story short my Cable Company (OneLink Comunications in San Juan, Puerto Rico) says they only provide ONE Cable Card and only to TV's, NOT other equipment, such as the S3. I tried to explain the the S3 is Certified by CableLab just like the TV's with no results. After discussing with the lady for over 30 mins she just said that I could either send a letter to Customer Support, since he's does not appear to be available via telephone, and/or file a complain with the FCC.
What do I do?
Should I return my S3 (purchased on the TiVo Community Store) or fight?

PLEASE HELP!!
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Old 12-13-2006, 03:42 PM   #2
dt_dc
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Take their advice and file a complaint with the FCC ...
http://www.fcc.gov/cgb/complaints_general.html

However, somewhere on this forum (sorry, can't find it ... I'm sure someone will post a link) is contact info for some people at Tivo to contact (who will probably resolve the issue quicker / easier).
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Old 12-13-2006, 03:45 PM   #3
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Ahh, here's TivoPony's post ...
http://www.tivocommunity.com/tivo-vb...&&#post4392226
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Old 12-13-2006, 03:58 PM   #4
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Many of us didn't tell them we were hooking up an S3. We simply told them we needed two cable cards. If they would have asked me I would have told them two sets.
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Old 12-13-2006, 04:37 PM   #5
crabell
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I tried saying it was for a TV, but the lady said she needed the model number of the TV to pre-configure the card before the installation.
That's when I had to "come clean" and tried to explain with no results.
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Old 12-13-2006, 05:23 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabell
I tried saying it was for a TV, but the lady said she needed the model number of the TV to pre-configure the card before the installation.
That's when I had to "come clean" and tried to explain with no results.
Next time, tell them you are buying two lcds soon and haven't picked a model yet, but will have them by x day (same day you request the install).
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Old 12-13-2006, 05:31 PM   #7
crabell
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The "not-so-helpful" lady at the cable company told me she was writing a memo on my account about the conversation I had with her. I tried to convince her not to do so, but she said it "was not a problem" (the only time she tried to be nice). Therefore I don't think I'll be able to convince them I need the CableCards for another equipment.
Don't get me wrong, I like the idea and I may even try it (without giving my account number).
Does anyone know if they really need the equipment's model number to pre-configure the cards? It kind of sounds like she made it up.
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Old 12-13-2006, 05:45 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabell
I tried saying it was for a TV, but the lady said she needed the model number of the TV to pre-configure the card before the installation.
That's when I had to "come clean" and tried to explain with no results.
Just give her the model number is TCD648250B and that they can find it on the CableCards approved device list.

(They don't need anything from you to "pre-configure" the CableCARDs, that's just BS).
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Old 12-13-2006, 05:46 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabell
The "not-so-helpful" lady at the cable company told me she was writing a memo on my account about the conversation I had with her. I tried to convince her not to do so, but she said it "was not a problem" (the only time she tried to be nice). Therefore I don't think I'll be able to convince them I need the CableCards for another equipment.
Don't get me wrong, I like the idea and I may even try it (without giving my account number).
Does anyone know if they really need the equipment's model number to pre-configure the cards? It kind of sounds like she made it up.
I don't believe they do. Cablecards aren't configured to a specific device until they are installed and matched to the Host ID of the device. I don't know if you can even tell what the Host ID is until you put a card in. Even then, the card is only tied to that Host ID, not the specific device make/model.
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Old 12-13-2006, 05:57 PM   #10
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Just giving them the model number and "playing dumb" about the "TV Brand" sounds like a plan. I guess I could just say it's a "surprise holiday gift" and that's all my wife would tell me to get the CableCards in time for the Holidays.
But what about the Second Cable Card? They keep saying they can only configure one card per account? Is there some kind of FCC requirement that is specific enough?
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Old 12-13-2006, 06:14 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabell
Just giving them the model number and "playing dumb" about the "TV Brand" sounds like a plan. I guess I could just say it's a "surprise holiday gift" and that's all my wife would tell me to get the CableCards in time for the Holidays.
But what about the Second Cable Card? They keep saying they can only configure one card per account? Is there some kind of FCC requirement that is specific enough?
As stated above, talk to Tivo. They should help straighten it out. From what I have seen they will call your cable provider with you to get it resolved.
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Old 12-13-2006, 06:39 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabell
The "not-so-helpful" lady at the cable company told me she was writing a memo on my account about the conversation I had with her. I tried to convince her not to do so, but she said it "was not a problem" (the only time she tried to be nice). Therefore I don't think I'll be able to convince them I need the CableCards for another equipment.
Don't get me wrong, I like the idea and I may even try it (without giving my account number).
Does anyone know if they really need the equipment's model number to pre-configure the cards? It kind of sounds like she made it up.
If you call back (without giving your account number), pretending that the cableCARD is for a TV, you could try saying that you want the second card to enable picture-in-picture on the TV. I googled, but couldn't find a TV that actually has two cableCARD slots.
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Old 12-14-2006, 05:29 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IzzyB68
As stated above, talk to Tivo. They should help straighten it out. From what I have seen they will call your cable provider with you to get it resolved.
I want to get my Cable Proivider to talk to TiVo to resolve the situation, however it's not looking good:

1. I can't get a line through to TiVo! Every time call TiVo's 877... number I get a "Fast Busy" signal. I think TiVo did not include Puerto Rico in the "Toll-Free" area. Is there another non-toll-free number?

2. If manage to get someone at TiVo I would have to make a conference call with my Cable Provider to get them to talk to each other with me on the line (see #3 below). I can only do this at the office and I'm sure my boss won't like it, but I'll deal with that. Maybe I'll need to do it during my lunch break.

3. Being in Puerto Rico we speak Spanish and I'm not too confident that my Provider's "English Speaking" Representative will have a knowledge of the language that's "good enough". Note that I tried to explain the situation in Spanish and she just wouln't do it. I'll just have to try it and see what happens.
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Old 12-14-2006, 06:17 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabell
I want to get my Cable Proivider to talk to TiVo to resolve the situation, however it's not looking good:

3. Being in Puerto Rico we speak Spanish and I'm not too confident that my Provider's "English Speaking" Representative will have a knowledge of the language that's "good enough". Note that I tried to explain the situation in Spanish and she just wouln't do it. I'll just have to try it and see what happens.
I believe that TiVo Customer Service is out West. Probably in California. If that's the case your chances of finding a Spanish speaking representative will probably be good.
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Old 12-14-2006, 06:42 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hookbill
I believe that TiVo Customer Service is out West. Probably in California. If that's the case your chances of finding a Spanish speaking representative will probably be good.
I think you are right, I might get lucky and find a Spanish Speaking TiVo Rep. , but I still can't find a way to contact Tivo via telephone (877 number does not work in my area)...
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Old 12-14-2006, 11:11 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabell
Does anyone know if they really need the equipment's model number to pre-configure the cards? It kind of sounds like she made it up.
Well ... they don't need to 'pre-configure' the cards. However, having the model number can be useful for the cable company and can be used to reduce problems during installation. Specifically, the cable company can check and see if any CA updates are needed to support a particular model. They can also check to see if there are any known issues ... or if the manufacturer has a firmware update available for the model that addresses any CableCard issues.
Quote:
Originally Posted by crabell
But what about the Second Cable Card? They keep saying they can only configure one card per account? Is there some kind of FCC requirement that is specific enough?
Yes
Quote:
http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2...7cfr76.640.htm

47CFR76.640

(3) Cable operators shall ensure, as to all digital cable systems, an adequate supply of PODs that comply with the standards specified in paragraph (b)(2) of this section to ensure convenient access to such PODS by customers.
Doesn't matter if you want 1 or 100 ... cable company must supply them (although they can certainly charge for them). Also, it doesn't matter if you want a CableCard to put in a TV ... or to put in a frame and hang on the wall ... or pile in a stack of some sort of contemporary art ...

Also
Quote:
http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2...cfr76.1204.htm

47CFR76.1204

A multichannel video programming distributor that utilizes navigation devices to perform conditional access functions shall make available equipment that incorporates only the conditional access functions of such devices.
Again ... doesn't matter if you want 1 or 100 ... or what you want to do with them. Cable company must make them available.
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Old 12-14-2006, 11:47 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabell
I think you are right, I might get lucky and find a Spanish Speaking TiVo Rep. , but I still can't find a way to contact Tivo via telephone (877 number does not work in my area)...
E-mail Tivo and see if they can give you another number. Also, they should be able to do the threeway, so you shouldn't have to worry about that either.
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Old 12-14-2006, 12:51 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IzzyB68
E-mail Tivo and see if they can give you another number. Also, they should be able to do the threeway, so you shouldn't have to worry about that either.
I'm actually on hold with them right now (5 minutes so far). I managed to get through by calling the 408... number for the headquarters and asked for customer support. If they can do the three-way, even better...
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Old 12-14-2006, 01:49 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabell
I'm actually on hold with them right now (5 minutes so far). I managed to get through by calling the 408... number for the headquarters and asked for customer support. If they can do the three-way, even better...
Good Luck! I hope it works out for you.
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Old 12-14-2006, 01:54 PM   #20
crabell
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Quick Update...

I managed to get through to Tivo using the 408... number listed on their web site (asked for support)

1. Was on hold for about 20 mins.
2. I identified myself and explained the problem.
3. Was placed on hold for another 5 mins.
4. Made conference call with Cable Provider.
5. First person that picked up the phone sent us back to the main menu.
6. Second person that picked up was very nice, she verified the availability of the Cable Card.
7. More hold time
8. We asked for the Second Cable Card.
9. More hold time.
10. Said she could not configure the second card.
11. I told her that was Ok, so we set up an appointment for this Saturday.
12. TiVo Rep. said he would send a request to TiVo HQ to see if they can help me getting the second Cable Card.
13. The whole thing took 1 hour flat.

Let's see what happens this Saturday... Wish me luck!

Since, if everything goes well, I get this one Cable Card working I will loose the "second tuner", do you guys think it is still worth it?

Thank you all... I'll keep you posetd!
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Old 12-14-2006, 01:58 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabell
Since, if everything goes well, I get this one Cable Card working I will loose the "second tuner", do you guys think it is still worth it?

Thank you all... I'll keep you posetd!
I would think having a second tuner would be good, so I would keep on Tivo's case to get your cable provider to provide both. They should be able to do this and it is FCC mandated.
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Old 12-14-2006, 02:25 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabell
Since, if everything goes well, I get this one Cable Card working I will loose the "second tuner", do you guys think it is still worth it?
Definately keep pressing for that second cable card ... 'single tuner' would seem (to me) like alot of functionality to give up.

Cable company, Tivo, your local franchise authority ...

However at this point I'd probably take the 10 minutes to submit an FCC complaint. Instructions to file a complaint via web, postal mail, e-mail, phone, or fax (whichever you prefer) can be found here:
http://www.fcc.gov/cgb/complaints_general.html

Edit: BTW, this is specifically an issue of Equipment compatibility ...
Quote:
http://www.fcc.gov/mb/facts/complain.html

FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
CABLE TELEVISION FACT SHEET
WHERE TO FILE COMPLAINTS REGARDING CABLE SERVICE

You should contact the FCC if you have complaints or questions about the following issues:
(...)
Equipment compatibility - The Commission has adopted rules to ensure simplified compatibility between home equipment such as TVs and VCRs and cable systems.
In general, the FCC instructs that alot of complaints (such as complaints about rates or customer service) should be sent to your franchise authority. However, equipment compatibility is one of the things that the FCC responds to.

Last edited by dt_dc : 12-14-2006 at 02:36 PM.
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Old 12-14-2006, 03:12 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IzzyB68
I would think having a second tuner would be good, so I would keep on Tivo's case to get your cable provider to provide both. They should be able to do this and it is FCC mandated.
It looks like their computer system is not setup to handle two cable cards.

When I explained the situation to TiVo Support he said we could not "force them" to give me the cable cards, that if they would not provide them, TiVo would try to help.

If they refuse I can always file a complaint with the FCC to see if they eventually make the necessary changes to their system to enable the second cable card.

I'm not even sure if their system is setup to enable HD programming if I don't have their crappy HD DVR combo box. I tried if for a month and returned it... just wasn't worth the $100 deposit and $20 a month, however while I had their HD-DVR in one TV I was able to tune to HD programs on my other Sony HDTV. These channels dissapeared when I returned it. I may be forced to get one just so they release HD programming to my house.

I guess I'll just have to wait and see what happens.

Wish me luck!
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Old 12-14-2006, 03:37 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabell
Wish me luck!
Did you get a Spanish speaking TiVo rep, or an English-speaking cableco rep?
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Old 12-14-2006, 03:48 PM   #25
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Does Puerto Rico even fall under the FCC's jurisdiction?

edit... nevermind... I see it is a "US posession" which the FCC covers
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Old 12-15-2006, 06:16 AM   #26
crabell
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CharlesH
Did you get a Spanish speaking TiVo rep, or an English-speaking cableco rep?
I didn't ask for a Spanish speaking TiVo rep, but I did ask for an Eglish speaking cableco rep and had no problems... I guess I underestimated my cableco reps. (or maybe I just got lucky)
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Old 12-15-2006, 09:07 AM   #27
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They should be able to enable HD on a cablecard, right? I mean HDTV users w/ cablecard slot can receive HD programming? Strange that they (apparently) are encrypting things or... eg, strange how the Sony could tune (I assume in clear QAM), then it changed..?

re billing for two cablecards, could ask them to try like Comcast, where the 2nd card is special $1.50 charge (so they have SOMETHING to bill), but don't charge a 2nd additional outlet charge on top...
or they could treat it like two sep cablecard installs, just ask to waive/credit any extra monthly charges for two/extra outlets.

Good luck! You're still better off almost, than Hawaii's billing w/ Oceanic... which charges extra for cards AND HD programming per card...
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Old 12-15-2006, 11:18 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabell
I'm not even sure if their system is setup to enable HD programming if I don't have their crappy HD DVR combo box. I tried if for a month and returned it (...) however while I had their HD-DVR in one TV I was able to tune to HD programs on my other Sony HDTV. These channels dissapeared when I returned it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by cgould
They should be able to enable HD on a cablecard, right? I mean HDTV users w/ cablecard slot can receive HD programming? Strange that they (apparently) are encrypting things or... eg, strange how the Sony could tune (I assume in clear QAM), then it changed..?
Sounds like the cable system is using some sort of tap / filter ... not encryption. Similar to how most cable systems handle the extended analog 'basic' cable package. If you don't subscribe, a filter is put on the line which filters out those channels ...

Heck, in that case you might not even need the CableCards (since the channels would be unencrypted QAM) if you can get the cable company to remove the filter ...
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Old 12-15-2006, 12:01 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dt_dc
Heck, in that case you might not even need the CableCards (since the channels would be unencrypted QAM) if you can get the cable company to remove the filter ...
...except for the other side of the card's functionality (mapping QAM channels to normal channel numbers).
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Old 12-15-2006, 01:00 PM   #30
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...except for the other side of the card's functionality (mapping QAM channels to normal channel numbers).
Yes, well ... details, details.
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