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Old 10-13-2014, 02:54 PM   #1
HKoytch
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Is TiVo Roamio 4K Coming Sooner Than Expected

broadcom.com/press/release.php?id=s870350

The above seems to indicate that the Roamio line may be due for an upgrade real soon. I have seen many posts saying it will be 2-3 years, but I doubt that now.

I'm in a quandry about the current TiVo sale and waiting for the 4K TiVo boxes.

Thoughts?
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:00 PM   #2
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Historically TiVo releases new boxes at one of two times... Late August / early September before the new TV season starts or around the end of March which is when they have their blue moon holiday. (The release date of the first TiVo) So even if it is going to happen soon I'm betting it wont be until March/April.

And even then... Who cares? There is no 4k content. They could output 4k from Amazon and Netflix, but that's it. It'll be years before we see broadcasters doing 4k.
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:12 PM   #3
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Dan203 thanks for the reply. I'm thinking it's not about $K content now, but more about being ready for it later. Purchasing a new box now may mean it's "old too soon" if there's a newer series or upgraded Roamio coming in the Spring.
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:31 PM   #4
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I really doubt the upgrade is coming that soon, but can't say for sure.

However being in the video industry I can tell you that it'll be years before we see any 4k channels to record on your 4k TiVo. The bandwidth requirements for 4k are nearly double that of HD which means it's impossible to broadcast 4k OTA and cable companies would need to dedicate an entire QAM to a single channel which will be hard when they're already running up against bandwidth limitations in their current systems. Right now 4k is a gimmick, like 3D was a couple years ago. Companies are selling TVs and devices that support it because it's the hot buzz word, but there is very little 4k content beyond demo videos so for most consumers it's a waste of money.
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:36 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Dan203 View Post
I really doubt the upgrade is coming that soon, but can't say for sure.

However being in the video industry I can tell you that it'll be years before we see any 4k channels to record on your 4k TiVo. The bandwidth requirements for 4k are nearly double that of HD which means it's impossible to broadcast 4k OTA and cable companies would need to dedicate an entire QAM to a single channel which will be hard when they're already running up against bandwidth limitations in their current systems. Right now 4k is a gimmick, like 3D was a couple years ago. Companies are selling TVs and devices that support it because it's the hot buzz word, but there is very little 4k content beyond demo videos so for most consumers it's a waste of money.
Hardware always has to advance before software can. This has always been true, whether you are talking about computers, smartphones, gaming consoles, or TVs. Just because a new piece of hardware is not being utilized to its fullest extent the moment you purchase it does not make it a "gimmick". It just makes you an early adopter who is willing to spend a premium on "future-proofing".
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:44 PM   #6
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I could see TiVo updating the Roamio Pro to offer 4k capabilities... At least it would be a better differentiator than TFX ever was on the Series 3 line...

Useful? Not really, but it might get people to spend a few extra dollars for the premium offering.

Call it the Roamio Pro S
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:45 PM   #7
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I really doubt the upgrade is coming that soon, but can't say for sure.

However being in the video industry I can tell you that it'll be years before we see any 4k channels to record on your 4k TiVo. The bandwidth requirements for 4k are nearly double that of HD which means it's impossible to broadcast 4k OTA and cable companies would need to dedicate an entire QAM to a single channel which will be hard when they're already running up against bandwidth limitations in their current systems. Right now 4k is a gimmick, like 3D was a couple years ago. Companies are selling TVs and devices that support it because it's the hot buzz word, but there is very little 4k content beyond demo videos so for most consumers it's a waste of money.
corporate.comcast.com/news-information/news-feed/comcast-partners-with-samsung-to-bring-streaming-4k-ultra-hd-content-to-the-television

Evidently, Comcast is going to use the Internet not just their cable.
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:46 PM   #8
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You may be right, Bradleys.
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:47 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by bradleys View Post
I could see TiVo updating the Roamio Pro to offer 4k capabilities... At least it would be a better differentiator than TFX ever was on the Series 3 line...

Useful? Not really, but it might get people to spend a few extra dollars for the premium offering.

Call it the Roamio Pro S
Nah, you gotta have "4k" in the name. "Roamio Pro 4k" could work.
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:49 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by HKoytch View Post
corporate.comcast.com/news-information/news-feed/comcast-partners-with-samsung-to-bring-streaming-4k-ultra-hd-content-to-the-television

Evidently, Comcast is going to use the Internet not just their cable.
Which is funny because their internet is based on DOCSIS which uses QAMs to tansmit internet signals. So doing this saves them zero bandwidth. In fact if people start using the service they're just going to bog down the internet and create a different problem. Seems like a stupid solution to me.
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:51 PM   #11
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Which is funny because their internet is based on DOCSIS which uses QAMs to tansmit internet signals. So doing this saves them zero bandwidth. In fact if people start using the service they're just going to bog down the internet and create a different problem. Seems like a stupid solution to me.
It would have the advantage of only using bandwidth when someone is actually watching the channel, but it would be no different than just using SDV. If the TWC merger goes through, TWC may actually convince Comcast to stick with SDV for 4k distribution.
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:54 PM   #12
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Which is funny because their internet is based on DOCSIS which uses QAMs to tansmit internet signals. So doing this saves them zero bandwidth. In fact if people start using the service they're just going to bog down the internet and create a different problem. Seems like a stupid solution to me.
Maybe they can borrow some from "Netflix"
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:54 PM   #13
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Hardware always has to advance before software can. This has always been true, whether you are talking about computers, smartphones, gaming consoles, or TVs. Just because a new piece of hardware is not being utilized to its fullest extent the moment you purchase it does not make it a "gimmick". It just makes you an early adopter who is willing to spend a premium on "future-proofing".
Not very future proof when the standards are still in flux.
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Old 10-13-2014, 04:00 PM   #14
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Maybe they can borrow some from "Netflix"
I'm not talking about overall internet bandwidth I'm talking about the bandwidth from the cable company to the user. Cable TV uses a technology called QAM which is basically a way to send digital signals over coax using the same 6mhz chunks that old analog TV channels used. Cable internet uses a technology called DOCSIS which uses the same QAM signals but allows bonding of several 6mhz chunks so that you can get higher bandwidth then is provided by a single QAM. So basically the internet portion of your service is using bandwidth they could be using for TV instead. So by making the 4k service an internet streaming service they're still using QAMs. In fact because the internet is not multi-cast they'd actually be using more bandwidth by doing it this way then if they just created a 4k channel.
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Old 10-13-2014, 04:24 PM   #15
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I'm not talking about overall internet bandwidth I'm talking about the bandwidth from the cable company to the user. Cable TV uses a technology called QAM which is basically a way to send digital signals over coax using the same 6mhz chunks that old analog TV channels used. Cable internet uses a technology called DOCSIS which uses the same QAM signals but allows bonding of several 6mhz chunks so that you can get higher bandwidth then is provided by a single QAM. So basically the internet portion of your service is using bandwidth they could be using for TV instead. So by making the 4k service an internet streaming service they're still using QAMs. In fact because the internet is not multi-cast they'd actually be using more bandwidth by doing it this way then if they just created a 4k channel.
Seems counterintuitive from a business standpoint. There must be something else at work.
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Old 10-13-2014, 04:30 PM   #16
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Seems counterintuitive from a business standpoint. There must be something else at work.
currently there are no cable STB that support 4k along with HEVC decoder(what you need to help reduce bandwidth requirements). Samsung TV's support HEVC so the few people who have one and can watch a few hours a week via streaming. Comcast and Samsung can then release press releases that they support 4k content.
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Old 10-13-2014, 04:35 PM   #17
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So by making the 4k service an internet streaming service they're still using QAMs. In fact because the internet is not multi-cast they'd actually be using more bandwidth by doing it this way then if they just created a 4k channel.
Lots of internet hardware have supported multicast for many years now but the ISP's have generally not turned it on.

Since Comcast would control the servers, routers and modem configs, they could turn on multicast as part of their 4k offering if they wanted.
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Old 10-13-2014, 04:44 PM   #18
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There's going to be lots of opinions about 4k...

Mine is that I have to doubt Tivo would release a new DVR that is 3x more powerful than the current gen just for VOD/OTT apps.

Actual 4K broadcasts are likely not something that'll happen before 2020 except maybe ESPN and a few others testing it. 4K won't likely catch any real mainstream momentum until 2024-ish (10 yrs). So whatever is bought today will have plenty of years on it, IMO.

Last edited by BigJimOutlaw : 10-13-2014 at 04:56 PM.
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Old 10-13-2014, 05:29 PM   #19
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There's going to be lots of opinions about 4k...

Mine is that I have to doubt Tivo would release a new DVR that is 3x more powerful than the current gen just for VOD/OTT apps.

Actual 4K broadcasts are likely not something that'll happen before 2020 except maybe ESPN and a few others testing it. 4K won't likely catch any real mainstream momentum until 2024-ish (10 yrs). So whatever is bought today will have plenty of years on it, IMO.
By 2020, you will probably be able to buy a 4K 65" for about $500.
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Old 10-13-2014, 05:31 PM   #20
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By 2020, you will probably be able to buy a 4K 65" for about $500.
You'll probably be able to buy an 8K TV by 2020.
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Old 10-13-2014, 05:39 PM   #21
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You'll probably be able to buy an 8K TV by 2020.
Very True, the Japanese are already working on 8k and hope to start test broadcasting it in 2016. They were already showing it at NAB this past spring.
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Old 10-13-2014, 06:02 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by HKoytch View Post
broadcom.com/press/release.php?id=s870350

The above seems to indicate that the Roamio line may be due for an upgrade real soon. I have seen many posts saying it will be 2-3 years, but I doubt that now.

I'm in a quandry about the current TiVo sale and waiting for the 4K TiVo boxes.

Thoughts?
Depends on how much you care about 4k I guess. Me I wouldn't worry about it because it will be priced high, 4k is going to trickle in, it will take up lots of storage, and it will be a 1st-gen model. And you need a new 4k tv.

Last edited by trip1eX : 10-13-2014 at 06:12 PM.
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Old 10-13-2014, 06:15 PM   #23
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Depends on how much you care about 4k I guess. Me I wouldn't worry about it because it will be priced high, 4k is going to trickle in, it will take up lots of storage, and it will be a 1st-gen model. And you need a new 4k tv.
My thoughts weren't as much about 4K as they were about buying a Roamio at a time when it was about to be model upgraded. I hate to buy the end generation of technology. I'm not thinking there will be much content yet.
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Old 10-13-2014, 06:29 PM   #24
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currently there are no cable STB that support 4k along with HEVC decoder(what you need to help reduce bandwidth requirements). Samsung TV's support HEVC so the few people who have one and can watch a few hours a week via streaming. Comcast and Samsung can then release press releases that they support 4k content.
That makes sense.
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Old 10-13-2014, 06:32 PM   #25
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My thoughts weren't as much about 4K as they were about buying a Roamio at a time when it was about to be model upgraded. I hate to buy the end generation of technology. I'm not thinking there will be much content yet.
No one can say for sure what's coming, but in the past there have been a minimum of 3 years between major hardware revisions. Based on that it is highly unlikely that they will release a completely new hardware platform like this in the spring. Especially when there is almost no consumer demand for 4k gear at this point.
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Old 10-13-2014, 06:48 PM   #26
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I just want to know that I'll be able to put 4 separate full HD resolution picture in picture screens up at the same time with a 4K tivo. I can see that being a heck of a lot more useful than individual channel 4K content (especially for big sports days :-).

They could even try a new twist on automatic commercial detection: Instead of skipping commercials, they could automatically switch the sound to one of the screens that isn't playing a commercial. Give the lawyers something to squabble about for another few years...
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Old 10-13-2014, 07:01 PM   #27
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I just want to know that I'll be able to put 4 separate full HD resolution picture in picture screens up at the same time with a 4K tivo. I can see that being a heck of a lot more useful than individual channel 4K content (especially for big sports days :-).

They could even try a new twist on automatic commercial detection: Instead of skipping commercials, they could automatically switch the sound to one of the screens that isn't playing a commercial. Give the lawyers something to squabble about for another few years...
I generally hate watching sports, but I love this idea for some reason.
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Old 10-13-2014, 07:03 PM   #28
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TiVo has never been keen on PIP. The original DirecTiVo had a chip that was specifically designed to do PIP, decoded two streams and overlaid them all in one step, and they never turned it on. I'm pretty sure the chips in the Premiere and Roamio units have similar capabilities and they still have never turned it on. I think TiVo's stance is if you want to watch more then one thing then record the other one and watch it later.

Personally I don't understand why anyone would want to use PIP. Seems like it would be impossible to pay attention to multiple video screens at the same time and if all you wanted to do was see the score on other games there are apps/websites that you can pull up to see those.
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Old 10-13-2014, 07:38 PM   #29
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I really doubt the upgrade is coming that soon, but can't say for sure.

However being in the video industry I can tell you that it'll be years before we see any 4k channels to record on your 4k TiVo. The bandwidth requirements for 4k are nearly double that of HD which means it's impossible to broadcast 4k OTA and cable companies would need to dedicate an entire QAM to a single channel which will be hard when they're already running up against bandwidth limitations in their current systems. Right now 4k is a gimmick, like 3D was a couple years ago. Companies are selling TVs and devices that support it because it's the hot buzz word, but there is very little 4k content beyond demo videos so for most consumers it's a waste of money.

This.

People don't understand how the systems (cable and DBS) work and the current limitations. Fact is current systems can't even give 1080p much less 4k.
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Old 10-13-2014, 08:06 PM   #30
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The bandwidth requirements for 4k are nearly double that of HD which means it's impossible to broadcast 4k OTA and cable companies would need to dedicate an entire QAM to a single channel which will be hard when they're already running up against bandwidth limitations in their current systems.
Regarding OTA, it seems like the roadmap is already in place and rapidly advancing with ATSC 3.0, which should have a finalized standard by the end of next year.

Of course it will take years for compliant hardware to be developed and implemented before the first markets actually see 4K OTA broadcasts, but premium providers can't risk being beat to market by a free alternative. Even if 4k OTA is still 4+ years out, I'm sure there is plenty of pressure in the industry to be the first to market an ultra HD offering.

Aggressive roadmaps from providers translates to pressure on suppliers and partners like Tivo, so a 4k-capable Roamio being released in 2015 seems entirely possible, if not probable. All the more reason for a cheap OTA-only model to be replaced, as all cable-models would likely be 4k-ready and come at a higher price point.
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