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Old 12-15-2007, 09:55 PM   #4471
jlee301
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I am in Union City, CA. The installer that came to my house was very knowledgeable with installing cable cards. He told me few weeks ago, he actually had to install the cable cards in a house where the person actually worked for Tivo and he pretty much gave him a free training on what to look for. It took him pretty much an half-hour to install and get everything up and running on two TivoHD boxes and a Series3.

Side note, he ended up bringing all MCARDs and they all worked on the first try. So I ended up using a total of four MCARDs to get everything up and running. The dispatcher he was talking to knew exactly what he was doing too. It was a nice and speedy process. I am very happy.

All I have to do now is call them up tomorrow and confirm my monthly bill statements to make sure they didn't add anything new to my bill. Took me about eight calls for them to get the order correct.

Only thing I am missing is the sports package, apparently it wasn't on the work order either. I better not be charged for it then.
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Old 12-15-2007, 10:04 PM   #4472
Allez
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All I have to do now is call them up tomorrow and confirm my monthly bill statements to make sure they didn't add anything new to my bill.
I did the same - found out they had me for 4 cable cards, even though I only had one
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Old 12-16-2007, 12:48 AM   #4473
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Well, I called and spoke to someone in billing like you suggested, and received the same response. "Comcast does not have M-cards." I said are you sure, because I have talked to many people who have gotten them, read about many people who have them, and even directed him to this thread, which he did actually look at. He was actually a very nice guy, and said he will look into it more and call me back on Monday, but that he is 99.9% sure Comcast does not have M-cards.

I also showed him the comcast.net website I posted above saying that the first card is free, and he said that's not true either. He said every card is 2.75 each no matter which card it is.

Wow.. this is just like a never ending circle of lies!
That's ridiculous! I will try and find out if the billing person I spoke with was in a certain "special" part of the billing department or what. She was the only person I talked to who seemed to know what she was talking about, even though nearly everyone I've talked to has been nice.

Also, I've noticed that sometimes their weekend reps are even less informed than the average CSR, so come Monday you may talk to someone more knowledgeable. Last weekend, I called up to find out where the heck CSPAN had disappeared to on my line-up and nobody including the supervisor knew it had moved to a different channel. They looked at the recent channel changes list to no avail. They hit the cards hoping it would show up. It didn't and they scheduled a service call. I was terrified b/c I didn't want a tech coming out and messing up my cablecards after I got them working. Anyway, CSPAN showed up miraculously the next day. When I called to cancel the service call during the week, the rep didn't understand why the weekend rep & supervisor didn't see that plainly listed on recent channel changes was CSPAN. And no I don't regularly watch CSPAN, so no teasing.

Last suggestion to try is maybe you could go in person to your local Comcast office? I don't know if that would work, but as a last resort.
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Old 12-16-2007, 01:57 AM   #4474
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To answer my own question...no. This is not feasible. Well at least I was able to walk into a Comcast service center here in Atlanta and pick up two 'S' cards. The representative there said that I could swap the two S's for a M when they got them in.

He did also say that most of the requests they get are for the M cards (lots of TiVos?) and that is what they order from the warehouse, but either the warehouse can't get them, or they are only being given to technicians for installs, or they are being sent somewhere besides the Atlanta service centers.

Anyway, if you are in the Atlanta area and looking for CableCards, the Chamblee service center currently has two S cards in stock as of me leaving at 1:00pm today (12/13).

Thanks for the heads-up and the tip. My appointment Friday evening was canceled (the morning of nonetheless) with Comcast saying, "no cards in the warehouse to do the install." I wish they had told me the day before and I wouldn't have left work for it.

On the upside, your tip gives me a service center that will allow me to pick up cards when they finally do arrive. The CSR's always tell me that I'm not allowed to go to the centers to get them. I'm in south Cobb but I will drive to get that cable card, lol. Can you tell me which one in Chamblee will let customers pick them up? I'd like to call them before I head over.
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Old 12-16-2007, 06:48 AM   #4475
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Last suggestion to try is maybe you could go in person to your local Comcast office? I don't know if that would work, but as a last resort.
While you're there, ask them for their printed price list for different services!
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Old 12-16-2007, 07:20 AM   #4476
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While you're there, ask them for their printed price list for different services!
Or the OP could check their past bills. As everyone knows, the cablecos raise their prices annually. Comcast includes a new price list with the bill that month. (At least they do in my area, and I have to assume that is the standard practice.)
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Old 12-16-2007, 05:35 PM   #4477
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Do you 'own' your Cablecard?

I just called 1-800-Comcast to have a tech come to install a M-card in my new Tivo HD.

So before calling Comcast, I tried to do my homework. Comcast website says...
Quote:
There is no charge for the first CableCARD that you use as it is already included in the primary outlet fee. If you have a multi-card device on the same outlet (i.e. TiVo Series 3 or two Digital Cable Tuners connected to the same personal computer), you will be charged an additional regulated fee of up to $1.91 for the second CableCARD
see... http://www.comcast.com/customers/faq...s.ashx?ID=2651
Notice how their FAQ doesn't distinguish between a Single Stream vs. a MultiStream card.
So I called them up for an appt. and stated very clearly and consistently, "I want a Multi-stream CableCard installed in my TiVo. The service rep (who did not seem to be offshore) took my information and stated that there would be a one-time $23.99 for the card and a $17.89 installation fee.

Hmmm... I was expecting the install fee but was surprised by the $23.99 charge.
me... What's the $23.99 for?
Comcast rep... For the CableCard
me... Am I purchasing the CableCard?
Comcast rep... yes.
me... doh kay

Has anyone experienced this combination of pricing?

Although the install fee will be ~$40, I'm expecting that the monthly charge will be ZERO.

Reasons...
1. I'm already paying for digital classic tier, therefore the first CableCard is included
2. I've only asked for one card to be installed (although I specifically asked for a multi-stream card).

We'll see what happens. I'm prepared to argue with their billing dept if this doesn't hold true. But what's the pros/cons of owning the CableCard? It's not like I can use it for anything other than to connect to their system. Is this legal on their part? Shouldn't it be included in their service offering?

p.s. Comcast - Aurora, IL (not sure why Comcast would post their policies and prices on their website when it seems to vary so significantly from market to market)

Last edited by sgibbs33 : 12-16-2007 at 07:29 PM. Reason: added location
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Old 12-16-2007, 06:09 PM   #4478
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But what's the pros/cons of owning the CableCard? It's not like I can use it for anything other than to connect to their system. Is this legal on their part? Shouldn't it be included in their service offering?
Would you have to pay for another if it stops working? Is there some kind of warranty for it? I can't think of an advantage to owning one vs getting one with no monthly charge.
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Old 12-16-2007, 06:29 PM   #4479
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I just called 1-800-Comcast.
Comcast has taken over many, many smaller cablecos. Many of them have existing contracts with local Cities and Towns. So, in order for anyone to be of any real assistance, you need state your location. Once you do that, if you are lucky, someone living in your area may be able to answer your questions.

Also, you should have received an insert in your bill which lists all of the pricing. That may be of assistance as well. It usually comes out annually (with a price increase).

EDIT: Oh, and I would say Comcast selling a cableCARD is so unusual, it's the first time I've ever heard of it. But, it's not impossible.
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Old 12-16-2007, 08:11 PM   #4480
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Would you have to pay for another if it stops working? Is there some kind of warranty for it? I can't think of an advantage to owning one vs getting one with no monthly charge.
It'd be nice if it actually turns out to be truly owned, I suppose. I still have my doubts about anything a CSR says.

But I'd say if the owned price is roughly 1 year of the monthly price you're almost always going to do better to own than to pay monthly.
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Old 12-16-2007, 08:44 PM   #4481
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But I'd say if the owned price is roughly 1 year of the monthly price you're almost always going to do better to own than to pay monthly.

True, although in sgibbs33's case if he 'rents' an M-card hopefully there won't be a monthly charge for the card itself. That's the case for me (through Comcast also). In any event, $23.99 is not an outrageous amount in the big picture. I do wonder, though, what happens if the card fails or starts acting weird . . .
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Old 12-16-2007, 08:54 PM   #4482
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Thanks for the heads-up and the tip. My appointment Friday evening was canceled (the morning of nonetheless) with Comcast saying, "no cards in the warehouse to do the install." I wish they had told me the day before and I wouldn't have left work for it.

On the upside, your tip gives me a service center that will allow me to pick up cards when they finally do arrive. The CSR's always tell me that I'm not allowed to go to the centers to get them. I'm in south Cobb but I will drive to get that cable card, lol. Can you tell me which one in Chamblee will let customers pick them up? I'd like to call them before I head over.
Unfortunately, Comcast does not let you call into their service centers, so there is no public number. I just kinda showed up one day and asked. If they have any, they will give them to you. The Chamblee office is off of Peachtree Industrial near Chamblee-Dunwoody Rd. The street name is Malone.

That is their main service center for the Atlanta area. It's where all of their (southeastern) studios are as well.
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Old 12-16-2007, 09:09 PM   #4483
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True, although in sgibbs33's case if he 'rents' an M-card hopefully there won't be a monthly charge for the card itself. That's the case for me (through Comcast also). In any event, $23.99 is not an outrageous amount in the big picture. I do wonder, though, what happens if the card fails or starts acting weird . . .
Well, they aren't charging anything here for the cableCARD. Just one A/O for premium content at $2.75/mo. after the first outlet. In my case, 4 cableCARDs, 3 $2.75 charges per mo.
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Old 12-17-2007, 12:52 AM   #4484
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Unfortunately, Comcast does not let you call into their service centers, so there is no public number. I just kinda showed up one day and asked. If they have any, they will give them to you. The Chamblee office is off of Peachtree Industrial near Chamblee-Dunwoody Rd. The street name is Malone.

That is their main service center for the Atlanta area. It's where all of their (southeastern) studios are as well.
Thank you again. It would be nice if I could at least call the generic 404-COMCAST number and have a CSR tell me if they at least have some in the warehouse but I know that's probably pointless. I'll have to give it a shot and try them one day this week. If you happen to beat me to it, can you post back and let us know they have them in stock and I'll do the same.
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Old 12-17-2007, 05:59 AM   #4485
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Thank you again. It would be nice if I could at least call the generic 404-COMCAST number and have a CSR tell me if they at least have some in the warehouse but I know that's probably pointless. I'll have to give it a shot and try them one day this week. If you happen to beat me to it, can you post back and let us know they have them in stock and I'll do the same.
Sure thing.
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Old 12-17-2007, 07:01 AM   #4486
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Just complaining here about the billing-Hell I'm entering:

About a month ago I got my cards installed (3 separate Comcast Visits). Requested the M-Card. They kept sending out bad M-Cards or M-Cards attached to other accounts.

They charged me an additional outlet fee of $5.99 last month. I called and the lady said, "That isn't right." She said she fixed it and I'd be set.

So I just got my new bill. $5.99 is back. I called. the lady on the phone says, "Well, that second cableCard is the reason for $5.99. That's just the cost of it. "Not according to your website," I tell her. While she's not rude, she's not looking to fix this either.

I explain that:
- First off, I requested a single M-Card (and I tell her the difference). You guys couldn't get it to work because you kept sending out broken M-Cards or M-Cards attached to other accounts and you couldn't switch it over the phone. It's no fault of mine why you couldn't get it working, yet your charging me for your screw ups.
- Secondly, I was told by the cable installer who specifically checked with you guys during the install, that I wouldn't be charged extra for the second S-Card
- Third - even if you ignore the first 2 issues. Your own web-site says you'll only charge me up to $1.91 for the additional card.

"Well, sir, for you to get what you want I suggest you take your 2 S-Cards down to the local retail location and get them to swap it out," she tells me.

I then explain, "They don't have them there and require a 'specialist' to come out and plug the cards in."

Basically, I go round and round with her. The end result: She wants me to take these 2 cards down to the local office and tell them, "Swap them out." Which I'm almost certain will result in the lady at the office telling me, "We don't do that here. You can only drop them off. You have to have a technician come out and install the cards."

I would bet money on that being the response.

So, I'm left either paying the $6/month or wasting time fooling with it all.

I suppose I should just choke down the $36/year even though it pisses me off that it's just a bogus charge in 3 separate ways.

And the cable companys wonder why people hate them...
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Old 12-17-2007, 07:53 AM   #4487
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Basically, I go round and round with her. The end result: She wants me to take these 2 cards down to the local office and tell them, "Swap them out." Which I'm almost certain will result in the lady at the office telling me, "We don't do that here. You can only drop them off. You have to have a technician come out and install the cards."
Try going down to the office and asking if they have any M-Cards BEFORE you do anything. If they have them, then go home, get yours and exchange them. Just a suggestion.
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Old 12-17-2007, 08:26 AM   #4488
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Try going down to the office and asking if they have any M-Cards BEFORE you do anything. If they have them, then go home, get yours and exchange them. Just a suggestion.
Just an update:

I tried a chat session via Comcast's site.

The lady I spoke to there determined that not only did I need to pay the $5.99/month for the additional Digital Outlet but that I should have been paying an additional $1.50 for the extra cable card on top of all of that. She sent my account to their Auditing department to make sure that they could find any and all fees that I need to be paying.

Yeah - I took her through the entire explanation - she ticked me off. It was like, "Yes, sir, rather than try to understand what you're talking about I'm going to make it worse for you." I was really close to just cancelling Comcast altogether after that session.

I tried calling back one more time. I got a hold of a rep, asked him if he understood cableCards and then explained the difference, what I had been trying to do, and why I shouldn't be charged. He seemed to not only understand it but said, in reference to all the stuff I had been through, "That doesn't make any sense at all why we'd charge you anything extra." He's escalated it and said he'll do what it takes to make it right.

So he's going to either: Figure out how to make my account right or figure out how to get me an M-Card as Comcast's billing system seems to be what's in the way.

I even told him, "I really don't want to blow another afternoon on this. I'd be happy running the S-Cards to someone who can exchange them for an M-Card. Really, whatever is easiest for this problem to go away." He agreed and called back to let me know the status (still not resolved but they're working on it).

Sounds like this guy is on the ball.
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Old 12-17-2007, 10:38 AM   #4489
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Trouble In New Jersey With Cable Cards

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I am a TIVO customer, and have had no problems with my original TIVO since I purchased it over 6 years ago. I was extremely pleased with Tivo. However, when I upgraded to HDTV, I decided to take advantage of the Comcast DVR so I could record in HD, and my daughter ended up with the Tivo box in her room. At the time TIVO did not offer an HD DVR.
I longed for an HDTV Tivo for years, and finally decided to treat myself to an early Christmas present this year by buying a Series 3 HDTV Tivo. Before purchasing, I contacted Comcast to find out if they provided cable cards for TIVO DVR's. I was told yes, and they would be free of charge. I was informed that Comcast would bring them to my home, and charge a fee of $16.95. Fine. I decided to proceed with the purchase of my new Tivo Series 3. They were sold out online, so I went to my local Best Buy to make my purchase.
I promptly called and made an appointment for Comcast to deliver my cable cards. During that call I was informed that the visit would run 24.95, as it is an HDTV DVR. Fine. No problem. Just hook me up! I had an appointment. scheduled for today between 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. I arrived home prior to the scheduled time and checked my messages. I had a message left by Comcast saying they needed to cancel my appointment. The caller informed me that there were compatibility issues with the Tivo boxes and their cable cards so they could not keep out appointment. I called Comcast to discuss this issue. I expressed my anger/amazement over this issue due to my past phone calls to Comcast, as well as research I had done which indicated that other individuals in NJ had purchased the new Series 3 and successfully obtained the cable cards from Comcast. I was told that I could "reschedule" my appointment by the rep. which baffled me due to the "compatibility" issues and so called "defectiveness" of the Tivo boxes that they had stated previously. I informed the rep. that I ALREADY had a scheduled appt. for TODAY that they canceled, and that I expected them to honor their promise. I was put on hold. Then the rep. came back on and said she was trying to reach someone to come out today, but she was on hold and would call me back. I waited about 40 min. No call. I called back and spoke with another person. I was informed that the records indicated I had canceled my appointment. I clarified that this was not the fact. The rep. came back on after consulting with the Mighty Wizard of Comcast, I suppose. She told me that Comcast would not come to install the cable cards in my Tivo box, as it was from a "third party." I informed her that I was well aware that the FCC had mandated that these be provided to me. I got NOWHERE. I asked for a number to the corporate office, and of course she "didn't have that information available." How convenient. I had already spoken with someone from Tivo who was more than happy to have a conference call with a Comcast tech. and myself, but since I was obviously getting no where I didn't bother with that. The person from Comcast did state that I could go to a local Comcast office and pick up the cable cards directly. FINE! I drove to the nearest office and waited in line. When I got to the front, I was informed that NO, I could not pick up cable cards from them. I decided that I would not name the brand of DVR. I simply stated that I had purchased a DVR, and needed two cable cards. The person helping me set up a NEW appointment for Monday between 10 a.m. and 12 p.m. SOOOOOO..............
I am extremely frustrated. I finally realize my dream on getting my new Tivo and meet great resistance from Comcast. I actually planned on keeping my Comcast DVR for use in my home, in addition to the Tivo, but would prefer to cancel every service I have with Comcast at this point (cable and internet). However, they are the ONLY cable provider available to me in my town. I live in Southern New Jersey, and wondered if anyone out there from New Jersey has had a similar problem. I have read past threads from people in Central New Jersey that indicated they received their cable cards with far less problem, or no problem. I am now waiting to see how this appointment will proceed on Monday. Perhaps I will get another cancellation phone call from Comcast???? Anyone??? HELP!!!!!!!!!! I will let you know what happens on Monday.
RNSAMRN
So the gentleman from Comcast just left. Actually, he was subcontracted by Comcast to install the cable cards. Very nice person, but admitted he knew nothing about installing the cards into Tivo. I had printed out step-by-step instructions for him and he read over them. Everything seemed to be going OK. I called Tivo just to ask a few questions before we started.
The outcome was this. The cable cards were Motorola starting with the serial number MA. Apparently Comcast has had trouble with the Motorola cards starting in MA in my area (Southern New Jersey). The woman who was trying to program them said that if the serial number started in NG, she would have had no problem, as these cards have been working. So the bottom line was no successful install with the cable cards, and "they will get back to me as soon as the issue is resolved." So I am stuck. I am waiting for the subcontractor's supervisor to call me, so I can see if there is any way of getting these other cable cards. Apparently the error message given was not the 161-4 one that is ok to ignore. The phone number the guy called to activate the cards was not the one that popped up on the gray screen on Tivo that is provided by the cable company, but some number he was told to call. Don't think that matters. Basically, it sounds like I am screwed. The guy had two other cards with him, but they had the same type of serial numbers, so he wouldn't try them, and I am sure he didn't want to waste any more time. He was here for an hour and a half, and seemed to want to get on his way to see other customers. He didn't indicate any of this was a Tivo problem, but a Comcast and Motorola problem. Said that his company was not being provided with the cards starting with NG, and didn't seem to think he could get them.
I feel like a beaten horse. This is crazy. As far as I am concerned, per the FCC law they are required to provide me with these cards. So I will wait and talk to the supervisor and see what comes of it.
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Old 12-17-2007, 10:39 AM   #4490
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Maryland (Calvert County) - good experience

The installer showed up with both S-cards and M-cards. He told me upfront that he had never done a TiVo installation before. So I suggested he start with the M-card. He plugged it in, called the office to activate it, and it worked. Simple as that.

Amazed and pleased.
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Old 12-17-2007, 11:32 AM   #4491
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Obviously it is in the activation of the cards that there is a problem. I am on hold with Comcast right now to see if they can send someone out who has actually done this before. I KNOW it can be done. Guess it just takes having the right technician, the right activation person, the right cards...........AHHHHHHH.
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Old 12-17-2007, 02:06 PM   #4492
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Mcards-Howard County, MD

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I was just informed by Comcast in Howard County, MD that multi-stream cards are being recalled due to "a firmware issue with Tivo and some TVs" that has a black screen showing up.

Is anyone else getting this message?

I am going through the usual (and ANNOYING) Comcast installation headaches (No one shows up for the first appointment, 2nd one incomplete as the Installer does is incapable of completing the install, third one appointment installer does not have enough cards so cannot complete the install!)
I've had a Scientific Atlanta Mcard working in a THD since Septemeber, and it still seems to be working fine. Getting it running wasn't the best or worst story on this board, but it did only take one visit (you can search for my posts in this thread).

If this is true, I sure hope it doesn't break what doesn't need fixing!
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Old 12-17-2007, 02:24 PM   #4493
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So I called them up for an appt. and stated very clearly and consistently, "I want a Multi-stream CableCard installed in my TiVo. The service rep (who did not seem to be offshore) took my information and stated that there would be a one-time $23.99 for the card and a $17.89 installation fee.

Hmmm... I was expecting the install fee but was surprised by the $23.99 charge.
me... What's the $23.99 for?
Comcast rep... For the CableCard
me... Am I purchasing the CableCard?
Comcast rep... yes.
me... doh kay

Has anyone experienced this combination of pricing?
Yes, I experienced this in Naperville (I see that you are in Aurora) during my final two (of three) installation attempts. The $23.99 is installation for the CableCARD, and the $17.89 is an additional outlet activation fee. You really shouldn't be getting the $17.89 charge unless you already have digital equipment on another outlet elsewhere in your home. I got Executive Care to give me a credit for both charges because they tried to ding me for install fees on each of three visits, even though it was their fault they needed to come back at all.

All of that said, the rep is wrong. You're not buying the card, you're renting.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgibbs33 View Post
Although the install fee will be ~$40, I'm expecting that the monthly charge will be ZERO.

Reasons...
1. I'm already paying for digital classic tier, therefore the first CableCard is included
2. I've only asked for one card to be installed (although I specifically asked for a multi-stream card).
Hopefully, yes, your charge should be zero. I had a CableCARD in my Sony TV long before I owned a TiVo HD, and I never had a monthly fee, as it was supposedly included in the Digital Classic fee. I only got hit for one CableCARD installation fee at the time of activation.
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Old 12-17-2007, 06:31 PM   #4494
BurnBaby
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leopor View Post
Well, I called and spoke to someone in billing like you suggested, and received the same response. "Comcast does not have M-cards." I said are you sure, because I have talked to many people who have gotten them, read about many people who have them, and even directed him to this thread, which he did actually look at. He was actually a very nice guy, and said he will look into it more and call me back on Monday, but that he is 99.9% sure Comcast does not have M-cards.

I also showed him the comcast.net website I posted above saying that the first card is free, and he said that's not true either. He said every card is 2.75 each no matter which card it is.

Wow.. this is just like a never ending circle of lies!
Don't know if you ended up getting info on this today or not. If not, I got some information from the billing dept:

If you are not having luck getting confirmation that Comcast carries M-cards from your local Comcast, you can call the 800 # and choose billing on the automated menu. They are trained to deal with billing disputes. If you call that 800 # before 8pm (not sure if this only applies to weekdays or what), you will likely get a representative from the Philadelphia Comcast, which is where the headquarters are. All the billing people I've talked to so far know about M-Cards. The customer service reps do not.

The billing rep can look up your local information and help facilitate b/t you and your local office - All you have to do is give them your phone #. If the person cannot resolve your issue, ask for a supervisor, be polite & tell them that you've been getting the run-around and just would really like to straighten this out. It is possible that your local office may not carry M-cards, so if you can find someone in your area code that has definitely gotten an M-card that would help & then you can tell them that you've talked to people in the same area who have received M-cards.

The three Boston Comcast #s the rep gave me, in case you want to go the local route again, are:

(601) 268 1188

(601) 693 2366

(662) 842 5625


Good luck! PM me if you'd like the name of the first rep I talked with - I think you'll be fine with most of the reps at the home office, but in case you need to.
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Old 12-18-2007, 08:49 AM   #4495
RNSAMRN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RNSAMRN View Post
So the gentleman from Comcast just left. Actually, he was subcontracted by Comcast to install the cable cards. Very nice person, but admitted he knew nothing about installing the cards into Tivo. I had printed out step-by-step instructions for him and he read over them. Everything seemed to be going OK. I called Tivo just to ask a few questions before we started.
The outcome was this. The cable cards were Motorola starting with the serial number MA. Apparently Comcast has had trouble with the Motorola cards starting in MA in my area (Southern New Jersey). The woman who was trying to program them said that if the serial number started in NG, she would have had no problem, as these cards have been working. So the bottom line was no successful install with the cable cards, and "they will get back to me as soon as the issue is resolved." So I am stuck. I am waiting for the subcontractor's supervisor to call me, so I can see if there is any way of getting these other cable cards. Apparently the error message given was not the 161-4 one that is ok to ignore. The phone number the guy called to activate the cards was not the one that popped up on the gray screen on Tivo that is provided by the cable company, but some number he was told to call. Don't think that matters. Basically, it sounds like I am screwed. The guy had two other cards with him, but they had the same type of serial numbers, so he wouldn't try them, and I am sure he didn't want to waste any more time. He was here for an hour and a half, and seemed to want to get on his way to see other customers. He didn't indicate any of this was a Tivo problem, but a Comcast and Motorola problem. Said that his company was not being provided with the cards starting with NG, and didn't seem to think he could get them.
I feel like a beaten horse. This is crazy. As far as I am concerned, per the FCC law they are required to provide me with these cards. So I will wait and talk to the supervisor and see what comes of it.
RNSAMRN
And the saga continues...........
Soooooo - the "technical supervisor" who is supposed to "arrive before 5 p.m." never shows, and never calls. Why am I not surprised????? I had to leave for work at 6:15 p.m. I get home today and call good 'ol 1-800-COMCAST. The rep says, "oh the last notation was that someone was going to call you back to see if they could get someone out to fix the problem." I informed her that I did get a phone call back, about an hour after that, and tell her about the whole no call, no show thing. "Oh, let me try to help you...." Anyhow, now a "trouble-shooter" is supposed to come out today between 1 p.m. and 5 p.m.
I would so love it if someone showed up who actually can resolve this cable card issue, but after nearly a dozen phone calls, 1 cancelled appt., 1 appt. that failed, and 1 no call/no show, I am not going to hold my breath. The only thing I know is there is no TIVO GOD. Take it from me, because I have been praying to him, and any other god who might listen all week!! Soon my insane laughter will turn to tears though. And they wonder why people go postal!!!
RNSAMRN
Southern New Jersey - Land of Chaos
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Old 12-18-2007, 10:54 AM   #4496
Lensman
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Location: Hoboken, NJ (Verizon Fios); Pembroke Pines, FL (Comcast)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RNSAMRN View Post
Yeah - I found it funny too that online the Comcast site states that they have the cards, they are free, and it isn't a problem to obtain them.
But......actually try to do this and it is a totally different experience. They don't seem to care about losing you as a customer either.
RNSAMRN
Comcast is not monolithic in this. Every different locality is a little different. Some people can pick up cards at their centers, some can't. Some have M-Cards, some don't. Some don't even have any S-Cards in stock.

I've never heard that they won't come and install cablecards at all! You'll have to try the "call back later until you get the answer you want" method.

Beware, though, the phone agent told me that I could pick up the cards myself at a center but then they later told me at the center that I had to have a truck roll. All this so a guy can show up with two cablecards and tell me that he's never done this before. I had to walk him through the process and even then, I think it was done wrong because he never read anything off of the screen - just read the NGblahblahblah serial numbers off of the cards themselves. My cards are now acting like they haven't been activated - surprise, surprise.

This all contrasts with my experience with Cablevision in Northern New Jersey where the guy came over, stuck the cards in, read the numbers on the screen, called up an fought with the phone agents for 10 minutes, and got everything activated.
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Old 12-18-2007, 12:13 PM   #4497
Lensman
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Location: Hoboken, NJ (Verizon Fios); Pembroke Pines, FL (Comcast)
Posts: 156
Now for a continuation of my saga with Comcast of South Broward (hey, if there's one good thing about Tivo is you get to figure out what to call your specific circle of cable hell):

Installer comes by in the appointed time period, but is very cautious because this is his "first cablecard installation". He's a contractor, btw. He is obviously hesitant to follow my lead but I tell him that I've been through it before and it'll be alright.

First off, we get into a mini discussion of the fact that the TV has to be turned off first. Of course, I'm thinking, "how are we going to get the pairing information from the screen"? Obviously, he's under the impression that he's supposed to install the cablecard in the TeeVee, not the Tivo. I don't want to think about what language he thought I was speaking when I said he was supposed to install it in a Tivo.

Anyway, he calls in the "NGxxx" serial number on the first card, then we put it in slot 1 of the Tivo HD and get the dreaded 161-4 error. No getting around it (though I heard that we're just supposed to ignore it), so we try restarting, etc, but nothing.

He then calls in the "NGxxx" serial number on the second card and we put that one in. It seems to be going well, but he has no idea what to do next. Finally, after calling dispatch, he gets in touch with someone who he says tells him that the people she has to talk to are out to lunch and that she'll call me back in a half hour when they get back. I'm pretty familiar with this story but decide to let him go his way as long as it leaves the cablecard in my grubby hands (or at least my shiny new Tivo HD).

Anyway, after about 3 hours or so of waiting, I decide to give Comcast a call. The phone agent says that they've scheduled a follow-up for the next day (today) between 11am and 2pm. No word about this alleged "signal" they were supposed to send out. I decide to wait until tomorrow, but I do reboot my tivo.

So today rolls around and I turn on the TV and decide to check out the state of the cablecard. I wander around aimlessly but do notice that it's not active and "awaiting restart". I think about this a second then decide to restart the Tivo to see what happens.

I restart and rerun guided setup and amazingly, I'm all set! Both regular and unencrypted channels work fine and I even have all my HBO channels!

Now I just get to wait for the installer to come around again to install the second cablecard.

What I don't know is how this all happened without the cable installer reading anything except the original serial numbers off of the cablecard. Can they just have the cablecard automatically pair to a host without reading any additional information off of the Tivo cablecard screen?
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Old 12-18-2007, 01:03 PM   #4498
Leopor
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by BurnBaby View Post
Don't know if you ended up getting info on this today or not. If not, I got some information from the billing dept:

If you are not having luck getting confirmation that Comcast carries M-cards from your local Comcast, you can call the 800 # and choose billing on the automated menu. They are trained to deal with billing disputes. If you call that 800 # before 8pm (not sure if this only applies to weekdays or what), you will likely get a representative from the Philadelphia Comcast, which is where the headquarters are. All the billing people I've talked to so far know about M-Cards. The customer service reps do not.

The billing rep can look up your local information and help facilitate b/t you and your local office - All you have to do is give them your phone #. If the person cannot resolve your issue, ask for a supervisor, be polite & tell them that you've been getting the run-around and just would really like to straighten this out. It is possible that your local office may not carry M-cards, so if you can find someone in your area code that has definitely gotten an M-card that would help & then you can tell them that you've talked to people in the same area who have received M-cards.

The three Boston Comcast #s the rep gave me, in case you want to go the local route again, are:

(601) 268 1188

(601) 693 2366

(662) 842 5625


Good luck! PM me if you'd like the name of the first rep I talked with - I think you'll be fine with most of the reps at the home office, but in case you need to.

Burn, thanks for the info!
That guy that told me he'd call me back on Monday never did (surprise surprise). I'm on the phone with them right now, and on hold. The guy I'm speaking to is very nice, but is saying the same thing: "This says we only have S-cards. I can setup an appt for you and put on there for them to bring M-cards, but I don't know if they will"

So I told him my dilemma, that we would need either 6 S-cards for 3 tivo boxes, or just 3 M-cards for the 3 tivo boxes, meaning half the price. He went and checked with 2 supervisors, and both of them told him "nope, just S-cards." He gave me different pricing though. He said that since one of the 4 Comcast boxes we have right now is included in the digital starter package that we have, we would be better off keeping 1 box and returning 3 of them, because returing all 4 would break the package. Because of this, he said, the first card for the box would NOT be free, as we are still keeping 1 of the Comcast boxes. So, he said I would need 6 S-cards, $2.75 for the first one, and $1.50 for the 5 additional, making it $10.25 total for 6 S-cards. That's not horrible, but having 3 M-cards would take $4.50 a month off of that. I'd like to give them the least amount of money possible, especially for all this aggravation...

Thanks for your help!
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Old 12-18-2007, 07:04 PM   #4499
Gerhard
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Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 230
Cable Cards - New TivoHD - Stoneham, MA

Folks,

I'm getting ready to activate a TivoHD in Stoneham, MA on Comcast, and I wanted to know if there were any big issues to deal with?

Had anyone had cable cards installed in the Boston, MA area? ...near Stoneham?

Gerhard
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1 x TivoHD unit

Every seen the movie office space? These Tivos are in the Xerox II graveyard:

2 x Tivo (original)
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Old 12-19-2007, 09:10 AM   #4500
RNSAMRN
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Southern New Jersey
Posts: 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lensman View Post
Now for a continuation of my saga with Comcast of South Broward (hey, if there's one good thing about Tivo is you get to figure out what to call your specific circle of cable hell):

Installer comes by in the appointed time period, but is very cautious because this is his "first cablecard installation". He's a contractor, btw. He is obviously hesitant to follow my lead but I tell him that I've been through it before and it'll be alright.

First off, we get into a mini discussion of the fact that the TV has to be turned off first. Of course, I'm thinking, "how are we going to get the pairing information from the screen"? Obviously, he's under the impression that he's supposed to install the cablecard in the TeeVee, not the Tivo. I don't want to think about what language he thought I was speaking when I said he was supposed to install it in a Tivo.

Anyway, he calls in the "NGxxx" serial number on the first card, then we put it in slot 1 of the Tivo HD and get the dreaded 161-4 error. No getting around it (though I heard that we're just supposed to ignore it), so we try restarting, etc, but nothing.

He then calls in the "NGxxx" serial number on the second card and we put that one in. It seems to be going well, but he has no idea what to do next. Finally, after calling dispatch, he gets in touch with someone who he says tells him that the people she has to talk to are out to lunch and that she'll call me back in a half hour when they get back. I'm pretty familiar with this story but decide to let him go his way as long as it leaves the cablecard in my grubby hands (or at least my shiny new Tivo HD).

Anyway, after about 3 hours or so of waiting, I decide to give Comcast a call. The phone agent says that they've scheduled a follow-up for the next day (today) between 11am and 2pm. No word about this alleged "signal" they were supposed to send out. I decide to wait until tomorrow, but I do reboot my tivo.

So today rolls around and I turn on the TV and decide to check out the state of the cablecard. I wander around aimlessly but do notice that it's not active and "awaiting restart". I think about this a second then decide to restart the Tivo to see what happens.

I restart and rerun guided setup and amazingly, I'm all set! Both regular and unencrypted channels work fine and I even have all my HBO channels!

Now I just get to wait for the installer to come around again to install the second cablecard.

What I don't know is how this all happened without the cable installer reading anything except the original serial numbers off of the cablecard. Can they just have the cablecard automatically pair to a host without reading any additional information off of the Tivo cablecard screen?
Well, here is the rest of the saga. After working all night, and being up all day the previous day (now I have been awake for over 24 hours thanks to Comcast and awaiting their alleged visits) I get in touch with Comcast who says the "trouble shooter" will come between 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. on Tuesday. Keep the phone nearby, as he will call before coming. So I jump in bed to try to close my eyes, with phone next to my ear. Just as I have dozed off to the land of the dead I get a phone call. It is the so called "trouble shooter." Actually, it I discover later by looking at my caller ID that the phone call is not from Comcast, but from the same subcontractor group that screwed up the previous attempt. I as half asleep during the call, but what I heard was:
A) We are not coming.........
B) There is a compatibility issue with the Motorola cards and the Tivo boxes that seems to have occurred after the software update to 9.0
C) You are screwed
D) We will call you back at some time in the distant future when the issue may or may not be resolved

Right. So I am TOTALLY ticked off, but so exhausted that I barely know how to reply. I just say, "well I guess it is time to take this to a higher level" (God perhaps?). So now I will have to try to figure out what to do. I talked to Best Buy last night, and they think I could just return the box and get a refund (which I hate to do, as I have wanted this thing for two years). The kid there has not heard of any cable card issues. That doesn't get me back my $399 for the Lifetime Service. I could sell it on eBay, and let someone who actually lives in an area where they can get cable cards benefit. Or I can continue to try to fight the fight. I am thinking of filing an FCC complaint, and perhaps a complaint to the local Board of Public Utilities, but doubt that will accomplish anything. I wish I knew how I could just pick up the cable cards myself and activate them myself, but Comcast here will not allow you to do this. But at the same time, they will NOT install them for me. What to do. Any suggestions? I guess I will call Tivo today, but don't know what they can do about it. I can try to find a phone number to someone from Comcast, but I am plain sick of dealing with them. No one knows what they are doing, and no one can help me. We will see what happens. Merry Christmas to me.
RNSAMRN
Southern New Jersey
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