I wanted to start a new thread to highlight some of deficiencies found in the Comcast TiVo channel guide.
I'll start by pointing out a few thing I like about the Comcast TiVo guide:
- Programs are color coded in the guide, making it easier to find movies, sports, kids shows, etc.
- Programs broadcast in HD have the 'HD' logo displayed in their entry, making it easy to find HD programs and moves.
- A picture-in-picture box on the upper right lets you continue viewing your current feed while viewing the guide.
- The 'A' button on the Comcast TiVo remote lets you quickly filter the guide by All, HD, Movies, Children, Sports and News.
- The 'B' button lets you quickly switch between 'All Channels' and 'Received Channels'.
There may be other some other "pros" that I've left out, but I want to get to the most significant issue I've discovered.
The Comcast TiVo guide offers far less information about a program than the standard TiVo guide. This is, I'm sure, partially because Comcast and TiVo use different program guide sources, but the problem goes even deeper than that.
With standard TiVo, here are some of the details available for a movie listed in the guide:
- Description (includes Year)
- Content Rating
- Color Mode
- Date & Time
For Comcast TiVo, here's what's available:
- Movie Year
- MPAA Rating
- Star Rating
- Date & Time
The most glaring omission for Comcast TiVo is the lack of Actors detail. When you highlight a movie in the guide, the movie's description that appears above the guide does not include the movie's main actors(!).
This baffled me. Comcast TiVo lets me create a wishlist
based on the name of a person
, so it must somehow "know" the names of persons associated with each movie or program in its guide.
To test my assumption, I created a wishlist with the person "Tom Hanks" and sure enough, the resulting wishlist displayed a long list of movies starring Tom Hanks. But surprisingly, the description
of each of those movies did not list Tom Hanks' name nor any of the movie's other actors. Clearly, Comcast TiVo has access to more program details than it displays.
I then tried using the Search
feature to see what information was displayed for programs matching my search criteria. I entered the title "Cast Away" (a Tom Hanks movie) and highlighted that entry in the match list. To my surprise, the description appearing above the search window did
include the movie's main actors (Tom Hanks, Helen Hunt, Nick Searcy, Lari White). But if I pressed the Select
button to bring up that movie's Upcoming Program
screen, that screen actually removed
the actors list from the movie's description!
It appears the only way you can learn the list of main actors for a movie (forget directors, producers, etc.) is to use the Search
feature and highlight it in the match list.
Comcast and TiVo has, for unknown reasons, conspired to design a guide that makes life miserable for movie lovers like me, a giant step backward from the standard TiVo guide.
So far, the most straightforward solution to this problem appears to be returning your Comcast TiVo DVR and purchasing a new TiVo HD box.