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Old 12-05-2013, 02:33 AM   #1
nrnoble
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Will Cable TV ultimately migrate into being Internet TV?

Given that TVs are becoming more and more Internet devices with apps, will cable TV as it exists today disappear and we'll just have internet Entertainment channels\Apps. And from each network app we will be able to do various different things such as watch live programming, or watch that networks's VOD programming and anything else they offer via the internet to internet devices.

Not suggesting ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, ESPN, TNT, CNN, etc will go away, rather they will become icons\apps we can select and watch, rather than having channel numbers.

I've wondered why the networks or local TV stations don't offer live streaming directly from their websites to phones, tablets, and internet enable TVs. I suppose it has to do with the rights\restrictions they have to distribute programming.
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Old 12-05-2013, 03:21 AM   #2
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I think that's going to happen sooner rather than later and it makes me question my expensive TiVo purchases. Roku is really making some inroads.
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Old 12-05-2013, 04:12 AM   #3
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There are still a bunch of regulations and old school business deal in place that makes that a lot harder then it sounds. We're probably still a couple decades away from a pure VOD style TV system.
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Old 12-05-2013, 06:35 AM   #4
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I don't think the current infrastructure could handle it if every household tried to stream HD content simultaneously. While I definitely see it taking over at some point as a primary source for TV programming, there are still a lot of people using DTV converters for their old analog TVs. Older trechnology would have to coexist with us for quite some time before it takes over completely.

The one huge caveat I see is by having every communication source linked to your home via a single cable or optical network, it creates a huge weak link. With the exception of cell phones and satellites, every other form of communication could be severed if your internet goes down.
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Old 12-05-2013, 07:43 AM   #5
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I think that's going to happen sooner rather than later and it makes me question my expensive TiVo purchases. Roku is really making some inroads.
But do you really want to be forced to watch commercials in unskippable streams? Because that's going to be what they want in exchange for unlimited VOD of all channels/shows.

There will be a need for a good DVR in this house for the forseeable future, because I want to watch what I want when I want and how I want. VOD might solve the what and when, but it might not solve the how. Not to mention that you'll then be subject to the whims of what they want to make available (i.e. limited viewing windows).
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Old 12-05-2013, 07:51 AM   #6
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There are still a bunch of regulations and old school business deal in place that makes that a lot harder then it sounds. We're probably still a couple decades away from a pure VOD style TV system.
Man, i hope its not a couple of decades away.

Comcast,Time Warner will of course fight this tooth and nail and when it happens your 50 /month internet bill will rise to 200/month with overage charges on data! LOL.
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Old 12-05-2013, 08:40 AM   #7
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............
The one huge caveat I see is by having every communication source linked to your home via a single cable or optical network, it creates a huge weak link. With the exception of cell phones and satellites, every other form of communication could be severed if your internet goes down.
I don't see this as a killer issue. After all, just 30 or so years ago, and for decades before that, the POTS was the single communications link. Just means you have to keep it going. Same kind of argument applies to electric delivery, water, gas and sewer. Actually, if we deemed it important enough, providing redundancy in Internet service infrastructure probably is much easier and cheaper to do than for those other services.

I'm also not worried about overall bandwidth. Fiber could do it even with today's technology.

My main concern is I may not live long enough to see it happen.
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Old 12-05-2013, 11:58 AM   #8
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There are still a bunch of regulations and old school business deal in place that makes that a lot harder then it sounds. We're probably still a couple decades away from a pure VOD style TV system.
Totally disagree. Now way it's going to be "a couple decades away"!
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Old 12-05-2013, 11:59 AM   #9
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But do you really want to be forced to watch commercials in unskippable streams? Because that's going to be what they want in exchange for unlimited VOD of all channels/shows. There will be a need for a good DVR in this house for the forseeable future, because I want to watch what I want when I want and how I want. VOD might solve the what and when, but it might not solve the how. Not to mention that you'll then be subject to the whims of what they want to make available (i.e. limited viewing windows).
There will be solutions for that, legit or hacker.
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Old 12-05-2013, 12:15 PM   #10
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There are already solutions for that now (i.e., bittorrent and Usenet), so what's the advantage here?

People that wish for the all-streaming future better understand that it's going to come with tradeoffs just like anything else. They're not going to throw all that video out there subject to consuming whichever way you feel like, at least not without a (possibly substantial) cost.
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Old 12-05-2013, 12:18 PM   #11
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But do you really want to be forced to watch commercials in unskippable streams? Because that's going to be what they want in exchange for unlimited VOD of all channels/shows.

There will be a need for a good DVR in this house for the forseeable future, because I want to watch what I want when I want and how I want. VOD might solve the what and when, but it might not solve the how. Not to mention that you'll then be subject to the whims of what they want to make available (i.e. limited viewing windows).
That's the way it used to be when analog TV was over-the-air, and probably the main reason the home VCR, and eventually the TiVo, became popular.
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Old 12-05-2013, 12:20 PM   #12
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We need bandwidth competition. Perhaps local Wifi might eventually provide something.
Uverse is pretty limited as a result cable controls the pipe.
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Old 12-05-2013, 12:36 PM   #13
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I think that's going to happen sooner rather than later and it makes me question my expensive TiVo purchases. Roku is really making some inroads.
I hope it doesn't happen for a long time. I like my TV the way it is now. I can watch live, later at home, or live and later on the go. And most importantly, I can skip commercials.

In an all streaming world I'm not going to be able to skip commercials or save seasons of shows. I would imagine that NBC won't offer prior year's episodes of their shows for free on their app. Now I can store prior year's episodes very easily on my DVR or offload to my PC for storage if I'm low on space.

I really think all streaming is going to be really bad.
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Old 12-05-2013, 12:53 PM   #14
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In an all streaming world I'm not going to be able to skip commercials or save seasons of shows.
PlayOn/PlayLater already do. Not elegant or up to TiVo's standards or even a cable co dvr, but as with everything it's just a matter of time.

I'm not saying that's what I really want, I was just replying to the OP's initial question.
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Old 12-05-2013, 02:04 PM   #15
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Totally disagree. Now way it's going to be "a couple decades away"!
I don't know, there are just so many hands in the cookie jar in this industry I can't see how it's all going to be worked out any sooner then that. Huge tech companies like Google and Intel have tried to break into the industry and failed.

And even if it does somehow happen I agree with the others that it'll be chalk full of restrictions, like forced commercials and limited viewing windows, so some sort of DVR will still be required to maintain our current experience.
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Old 12-05-2013, 05:18 PM   #16
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And even if it does somehow happen I agree with the others that it'll be chalk full of restrictions, like forced commercials and limited viewing windows, so some sort of DVR will still be required to maintain our current experience.
I'm actually surprised that networks have not demanded that DVRs enforce no-skip rules into the digital data stream and no-copy. I can't see how it benefits any commerical network to allow the audience to FF\skip past the commericials, and also allow commercials to be easily edited out for same day world wide distribution via bittorrent. I use VideoReDo weekly, I'm just puzzled that the whole copy\edit process is not blocked via the copy\encryption restrictions that can be turned on so that their content can't be transferred off the DVR.

I've noticed that HBO and other pay networks block the ability to transfer their programming to other devices (ie computers or other DVRs).
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Old 12-05-2013, 05:22 PM   #17
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They tried to do that a few years back. But some advocate groups petitioned the FCC and convinced them to not allow it. Broadcast channels use public airwaves and as such are not allowed to impose any restrictions on their content. Now cable on the other hand can protect everything if they want. However they have to walk a fine line between what their customers want and what the content providers want.

Edit: Just looked it up. It was called the "broadcast flag" and was similar to the CCI byte used for cable but was for OTA broadcasts. And it looks like the advocate group I was talking about had to actually sue the FCC to get them to overturn the broadcast flag rules, not just petition them. The court ruled in their favor and stated that the FCC had overstepped their authority by forcing CE manufacturers to adhere to the broadcast flag rules....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Broadcast_flag
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Old 12-05-2013, 09:04 PM   #18
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But do you really want to be forced to watch commercials in unskippable streams? Because that's going to be what they want in exchange for unlimited VOD of all channels/shows.

There will be a need for a good DVR in this house for the forseeable future, because I want to watch what I want when I want and how I want. VOD might solve the what and when, but it might not solve the how. Not to mention that you'll then be subject to the whims of what they want to make available (i.e. limited viewing windows).
I'm not looking forward to any of that crap. Just enjoying what I have for the time being...
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Old 12-05-2013, 09:21 PM   #19
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I'm all for it *IF* there is a way to get everything without commercials, and there IS *ALSO* a way to still optionally record things for keeps (e.g. I keep musical performances on talk shows).

But mostly, if I didn't have to deal with DVRs/Tivos and could get EVERYTHING without commercials.. great!

I don't think that world will come for a VERY VERY long time. Eventually, yes likely.. (yes, I expect the commercial free version to cost a lot more than the commercial filled version.)
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Old 12-06-2013, 06:11 AM   #20
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There will always be a way to get everything you want without commercials, but it will likely not be legit.
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Old 12-06-2013, 07:24 AM   #21
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There will always be a way to get everything you want without commercials, but it will likely not be legit.
If you like PBS then you're already getting it.
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Old 12-06-2013, 04:12 PM   #22
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We need bandwidth competition. Perhaps local Wifi might eventually provide something.
Uverse is pretty limited as a result cable controls the pipe.
Man you got that right .There is little bandwidth competition.

And when we start to get all of our tv content over the dumb pipe,the
Comcasts of the world are gonna price internet services through the roof.
Bank on a cap on data like the cell companies too.
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Old 12-06-2013, 04:15 PM   #23
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If you like PBS then you're already getting it.
That's not entirely true. They're still there, just thinly veiled.
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Old 12-06-2013, 04:42 PM   #24
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Man you got that right .There is little bandwidth competition.

And when we start to get all of our tv content over the dumb pipe,the
Comcasts of the world are gonna price internet services through the roof.
Bank on a cap on data like the cell companies too.
That's a natural concern but it may not be as bad as you think.

If they overprice bandwidth, there will be a tremendous political backlash and we may be saved by the same government intervention that we now curse because it gives cable cos local monopolies -- i.e., the power of local or regional governments to control their down-the-street access.
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Old 12-06-2013, 05:03 PM   #25
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The cable companies aren't going to let some OTT service steal their business. If the industry starts to move this way then they will get in on it. They're not going to rely on over priced internet access fees and bandwidth caps to save them. They're going to follow suit and deploy their own VOD services to compete. And since people are already use to paying the cable company for video they will end up absorbing a good percentage of the customers into their new service.

The only question is whether or not they'll compete fairly. Or will they deploy bandwidth caps/throttling that don't apply to their own service but do apply to everything else?
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Old 12-06-2013, 10:50 PM   #26
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...
The only question is whether or not they'll compete fairly...
We're talking about cable companies.

Why would they start now?
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Old 12-07-2013, 07:27 AM   #27
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The cable companies aren't going to let some OTT service steal their business. If the industry starts to move this way then they will get in on it. They're not going to rely on over priced internet access fees and bandwidth caps to save them. They're going to follow suit and deploy their own VOD services to compete. And since people are already use to paying the cable company for video they will end up absorbing a good percentage of the customers into their new service.

The only question is whether or not they'll compete fairly. Or will they deploy bandwidth caps/throttling that don't apply to their own service but do apply to everything else?
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We're talking about cable companies.

Why would they start now?
Sleep well, your government will protect your interests. Just look what they've done with CableCARD and Tuning Adapters! Just the threat of FCC intervention caused the Cable Cos to come up with these wonderful solutions!
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Old 12-07-2013, 10:32 AM   #28
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The cable companies aren't going to let some OTT service steal their business. If the industry starts to move this way then they will get in on it. They're not going to rely on over priced internet access fees and bandwidth caps to save them.

The only question is whether or not they'll compete fairly. Or will they deploy bandwidth caps/throttling that don't apply to their own service but do apply to everything else?
Comcast already is - they're slow-rolling a new 300GB cap out market by market (we just got it in the ATL), trying to avoid the big hit they would take by doing it all at once. Frog in a pot of slowly heated water and all that - they learned a lesson from TWC's fiasco years ago.

And no, they won't and don't compete fairly - Xfinity streamed video on an Xbox etc. does not count against the cap because they say it doesn't leave their network. This preferential treatment was expressly prohibited as a condition of the DoJ agreement for the NBCU merger 3 years ago, but as usual our gov't is asleep at the wheel for broadband reg.

And now the new FCC commish is saying that it's ok for ISPs to charge extra for preferred access to websites, which will basically destroy the open internet as we know it if allowed to occur. Of course, he's a former NCTA and wireless stooge so this isn't all that surprising.
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Old 12-07-2013, 03:16 PM   #29
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Comcast already is - they're slow-rolling a new 300GB cap out market by market (we just got it in the ATL), trying to avoid the big hit they would take by doing it all at once. Frog in a pot of slowly heated water and all that - they learned a lesson from TWC's fiasco years ago.

And no, they won't and don't compete fairly - Xfinity streamed video on an Xbox etc. does not count against the cap because they say it doesn't leave their network. This preferential treatment was expressly prohibited as a condition of the DoJ agreement for the NBCU merger 3 years ago, but as usual our gov't is asleep at the wheel for broadband reg.

And now the new FCC commish is saying that it's ok for ISPs to charge extra for preferred access to websites, which will basically destroy the open internet as we know it if allowed to occur. Of course, he's a former NCTA and wireless stooge so this isn't all that surprising.

Seems like a family could easily exceed the cap by streaming video content from Netflix and other sources. Accessing the web won't impact the usage much, but anything related to video easily could break the bank, so to speak. Got to wonder if they'll have tiers, 300GB, 500GB, 750GB, etc.

What I suspect they really want to block is people doing illegal crap and small businesses setting up high volume servers on a consumer account vs a business account.
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