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Old 02-14-2014, 07:38 PM   #1
dougdingle
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NETFLIX on S3 - am I missing something or does it just suck?

So I'm trying to use Netflix for the first time on two original S3s, and an HD, and the only thing that comes up is something called Instant Queue, no way to browse, or add, or change, or do anything except choose one of the shows presented. If it ain't on that list, I can't watch it.

According to the TiVo site, there should be a Netflix 'home page' with the ability to search for shows and movies, but I don't see that.

Is that the TiVo Netflix 'feature' on the S3 and HD boxes, or am I missing something?

Because if that's it, it's worthless, and I'll have to buy a Roku or something, which I REALLY didn't want to do (not because of cost, but because of video/audio routing issues and complications).

Am I missing something, some configuration option?
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Old 02-14-2014, 08:29 PM   #2
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Yes, its now called "My List" but its the same thing as the "Instant Queue". They do not update S3 to the latest since its not supported. You can still use Tivo Search to find shows and movies and play on Netflix.
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Old 02-15-2014, 08:59 AM   #3
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If you did manage to get movies into the queue, you'd find the playback sucks. Even on my premiere it's choppy and not worth watching. I use a HTPC for netflix streaming, but mostly we get the DVDs, rip them to mp4 (AnyDVD and Handbrake) and serve them up via PyTiVo.
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Old 02-15-2014, 10:18 AM   #4
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So I'm trying to use Netflix for the first time on two original S3s, and an HD, and the only thing that comes up is something called Instant Queue, no way to browse, or add, or change, or do anything except choose one of the shows presented. If it ain't on that list, I can't watch it.
We have 2 S3 OLED's and I generally use TiVo Search to find and play one-off Netflix content. If it's a series where I'll want to play more than a single episode then I'll add it to our Instant Queue from the PC or tablet.

I haven't had any issues with playing Netflix on our S3's but we only do it a couple of times a month at this time although I was using it more often a while back catching up on a few TV series (Standard Comcast Performance internet service for reference).

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Old 02-15-2014, 10:43 AM   #5
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If you did manage to get movies into the queue, you'd find the playback sucks. Even on my premiere it's choppy and not worth watching. I use a HTPC for netflix streaming, but mostly we get the DVDs, rip them to mp4 (AnyDVD and Handbrake) and serve them up via PyTiVo.
I've done the same in the past, but that's a lot of work I'm no longer willing to undertake to watch shows or movies.

Of the 10 or so various shows and movies I looked at (a few minutes each), only one was bad both image and sound. The rest were a very little worse than Time Warner's normal feed - not choppy at all, but some amount of compression artifacts. Running TW's 15 mb Internet service.

It's too bad they chose not to implement a better interface for the S3's. It's going to be a giant pain to have to switch in and out of HDMI and optical feeds to integrate a Roku type of box. Being able to select from all the content right on the S3's would have been very convenient.

Editorial: I've been a TiVo customer for a very long time now, and with each advance/change offered by cablecos and streaming services, they fall farther and farther behind. No on-demand, no PPV, having to use the VERY finicky tuning adapters, pay for cable cards that have increased in price yearly, and no real upgrade path by refusing to transfer lifetime subs to new machines at a reasonable ($99, say) cost. In the meantime, the DVRs offered by the services themselves continue to improve. I'm thinking these S3's may be the last TiVos I own.
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Old 02-16-2014, 07:15 AM   #6
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Um, you realize that you are complaining about 8 year old tech, right? And, this was nearly the first box that had nexflix streaming available? Expecting 2014 interface on a box where it was a bolt on is a high expectation indeed. If you want a much improved TiVo/Netflix experience, you will have to upgrade
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Old 02-16-2014, 02:35 PM   #7
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Um, you realize that you are complaining about 8 year old tech, right?
Yet pyTivo seems to work fine on that old tech. I realize pyTivo has 100 times the engineering resources of Tivo or Netflix, so it's not a fair comparison.
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Old 02-16-2014, 07:26 PM   #8
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Um, you realize that you are complaining about 8 year old tech, right? And, this was nearly the first box that had nexflix streaming available? Expecting 2014 interface on a box where it was a bolt on is a high expectation indeed. If you want a much improved TiVo/Netflix experience, you will have to upgrade
TiVo has an exact count of the number of S3 units still in service. I can't imagine it's so small that a port of the plugin wasn't worthwhile. My guess is it's more about pushing the upgrade, which I would do if they were reasonable about transferring lifetime subs for some nominal amount of money. But they are not.

So I stay with the S3's I own, and email Netflix to tell them the TiVo experience on older hardware sucks, after which I cancel my subscription as a protest. I'm sure Netflix will survive without my $8/month.
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Old 02-16-2014, 07:40 PM   #9
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TiVo has an exact count of the number of S3 units still in service. I can't imagine it's so small that a port of the plugin wasn't worthwhile.
Worthwhile to who? As you note, it would be a dis-incentive to upgrade, which is where TiVo would make some additional revenue. Besides, it is quite possible the S3 hardware is too weak to support the plug in.

But to answer your original question: Yes, it sucks. I got a WD Live a couple of years ago to watch Netflix. That works fine.

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Old 02-16-2014, 09:01 PM   #10
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Um, you realize that you are complaining about 8 year old tech, right? And, this was nearly the first box that had nexflix streaming available? Expecting 2014 interface on a box where it was a bolt on is a high expectation indeed. If you want a much improved TiVo/Netflix experience, you will have to upgrade
That's a load of hooey. It worked fine, even in HD, up until about November and since then it's been one big sack of festering monkey balls. I don't care about the interface...I just want my S3 to do what it was doing before quite nicely, which was solidly stream Netflix. A true cynic would say TiVo has intentionally crippled the S3s in a bid to sell newer units. To that I say: No. And if they force it they lose a four-unit subscription. And don't bother to call Netflix about it...they care less about customer satisfaction than TiVo. Both of them are making Comcast look good, which is a tall order.
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Old 02-16-2014, 09:52 PM   #11
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TiVo has an exact count of the number of S3 units still in service. I can't imagine it's so small that a port of the plugin wasn't worthwhile. My guess is it's more about pushing the upgrade, which I would do if they were reasonable about transferring lifetime subs for some nominal amount of money. But they are not.
Tivo is not actively developing the S3, that app was written by Tivo and since that was initially developed Netflix has written their own apps for Tivo. Believe what you want and do what you want.
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Old 02-16-2014, 09:55 PM   #12
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That's a load of hooey. It worked fine, even in HD, up until about November and since then it's been one big sack of festering monkey balls. I don't care about the interface...I just want my S3 to do what it was doing before quite nicely, which was solidly stream Netflix. A true cynic would say TiVo has intentionally crippled the S3s in a bid to sell newer units. To that I say: No. And if they force it they lose a four-unit subscription. And don't bother to call Netflix about it...they care less about customer satisfaction than TiVo. Both of them are making Comcast look good, which is a tall order.
You have a different issue altogether. Check out the netflix report on Comcast, there is some thought that bottlenecks are artificial.

Actually, I have noticed poorer performance since Christmas on my HD unit as well. My guess was slowness was due to transferred or sold activations by those moving to Roamios.
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Old 02-17-2014, 05:16 PM   #13
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And to add to the annoyance, I just discovered Amazon content won't stream at all (it will allow it to be purchased or rented, but not streamed) on any TiVo, not just my S3's.

Frankly, I don't care in the least whose fault it is. The finger pointing is just pathetic. TiVo should be embarrassed and ashamed that a $99 box from Roku or WD outshines them in making streaming services with decent interfaces available.

Streaming is just going to increase. Seriously, it's 2014 now, and no Amazon streaming?

Adapt or die.
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Old 02-17-2014, 05:26 PM   #14
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And to add to the annoyance, I just discovered Amazon content won't stream at all (it will allow it to be purchased or rented, but not streamed) on any TiVo, not just my S3's.

Frankly, I don't care in the least whose fault it is. The finger pointing is just pathetic. TiVo should be embarrassed and ashamed that a $99 box from Roku or WD outshines them in making streaming services with decent interfaces available.

Streaming is just going to increase. Seriously, it's 2014 now, and no Amazon streaming?

Adapt or die.
Amazon does not stream to any Tivo at all, it must be downloaded to the Tivo. For purchased/rented content, you would need to go to Amazon and select what shows to get "Pushed" to the which Tivo. Otherwise, it would be another purchase if you do it from Tivo.
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Old 02-17-2014, 05:42 PM   #15
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Amazon does not stream to any Tivo at all, it must be downloaded to the Tivo. For purchased/rented content, you would need to go to Amazon and select what shows to get "Pushed" to the which Tivo. Otherwise, it would be another purchase if you do it from Tivo.
I understand that. I'm saying that I wanted to sign up to be able to stream from Amazon, and no TiVo will do that in 2014.

Why would I want to rent/buy a movie or show when it's available streamed, included in my annual subscription price? Ridiculous.
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Old 02-18-2014, 10:03 AM   #16
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So don't. Go ahead and give Amazon a call if you want an app for Amazon Prime streaming. If they were to write it, I would expect that it would be for newer platforms only. TiVo has a new app platform that is not compatible with the older boxes.
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Old 02-18-2014, 11:50 AM   #17
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You essentially have 8 yr old computers, with software from the same time period. I suspect (though could be wrong) that this old platform, old by computer standards, is just not going to be be robust enough to handle what you want Netflix to do on those boxes.

The Series 3 was on of the first set top boxes to run Netflix (I think Roku was the first) and at the inception was one feature that helped me cross the line to buy a reconditioned Series 3 OLED model in 2008. Still running great. No cap issues, yet. Though I haven't even opened the box in a few years...

Sometimes, if you want to run the latest and greatest software, you have to get a new computer or have a box that could even handle a newer operating system. Legacy computers and operating systems do not usually have the ability to run the latest and greatest software. At least Tivo is supporting the boxes and keeping them at the same level. Netflix on my old S3 box still works as well as (if not better) than it did 6 years ago, though I usually use my new Sony 3D Blu-ray player for Netflix at that TV - way faster and better interface. I don't expect an 8 yr old box with legacy software to offer an interface anywhere close. Different interface, same great picture.
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Old 02-19-2014, 10:36 AM   #18
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Well, I've ordered a Roku 3 box. We'll see how that goes.

Anyone know if Netflix and Amazon Instant send 5.1 audio (or is it just stereo)?
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Old 02-19-2014, 12:26 PM   #19
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Well, I've ordered a Roku 3 box. We'll see how that goes.

Anyone know if Netflix and Amazon Instant send 5.1 audio (or is it just stereo)?
Netflix will do 5.1 audio. With the newer devices and software, it will show 5.1 when you look at the descriptions for programs - for those that have and many do. Enjoy.
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Old 02-19-2014, 02:24 PM   #20
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That's a load of hooey. It worked fine, even in HD, up until about November and since then it's been one big sack of festering monkey balls.
This might explain your troubles:

http://business.time.com/2014/02/19/...rizon-peering/

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Old 02-19-2014, 04:25 PM   #21
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Even though Tivo was one of the first set top devices to offer Netflix streaming, they still proceeded to lose millions of customers. The one box concept was a dismal failure.
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Old 02-20-2014, 11:46 PM   #22
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Even though Tivo was one of the first set top devices to offer Netflix streaming, they still proceeded to lose millions of customers. The one box concept was a dismal failure.
I think the one box concept was (and is) an excellent idea. Too bad no one offers anything even vaguely resembling it.

And I think TiVo bled customers because they didn't actually offer a "one box" concept. Without PPV, without on-demand, with the finicky SDV boxes just to keep getting channels you already had, with the cablecos constantly raising the rental on cable cards, you had to really like the TiVo to stay.

On their end, they bumped lifetime subs by $100, they stopped offering the ability to transfer lifetime to another box for a nominal fee (thereby punishing loyal customers like me, who would have upgraded several times by now if not for that), they bumped monthly subs from $9.95 to $16.95, and let's face it, they pretty much stopped improving their software except for necessary fixes. Then they started pumping ads onto the Now Playing screen, as well as onto every show when paused.

I think the interface and their remote are fabulous, but I'm pretty sure that unless there are some radical changes in the way they do business, after about a decade as a TiVo owner, when my S3's bite the dust, I'll be moving on to another platform that offers PPV and on-demand without SDV boxes or cable cards. And I'll likely use the Roku or something similar to stream IP based shows.
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Old 02-20-2014, 11:53 PM   #23
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........
I think the interface and their remote are fabulous, but I'm pretty sure that unless there are some radical changes in the way they do business, after about a decade as a TiVo owner, when my S3's bite the dust, I'll be moving on to another platform that offers PPV and on-demand without SDV boxes or cable cards. ......
And pray tell: what would that magical platform be? Do you mean satellite?
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Old 02-21-2014, 10:04 AM   #24
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And pray tell: what would that magical platform be? Do you mean satellite?
PPV and on-demand can be had with most cablecos DVR's, and at least PPV from both satellite providers. I understand DirecTV offers a TiVo based box, although I know nothing about it.

TiVo was a serious innovator in its time, but they haven't done anything fresh in quite a while, and as inevitably happens, the competition is catching up.

Just dumping the SDV boxes (I have three) would be an enormous benefit. I understand how they work, but the entire concept is soooooo Rube Goldberg, and the things are constantly having little issues.
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Old 02-21-2014, 10:27 AM   #25
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PPV and on-demand can be had with most cablecos DVR's, and at least PPV from both satellite providers. I understand DirecTV offers a TiVo based box, although I know nothing about it.

TiVo was a serious innovator in its time, but they haven't done anything fresh in quite a while, and as inevitably happens, the competition is catching up.

Just dumping the SDV boxes (I have three) would be an enormous benefit. I understand how they work, but the entire concept is soooooo Rube Goldberg, and the things are constantly having little issues.
I couldn't agree more about the TA's (what you're calling the "SDV boxes"). I will celebrate the day when a TA is no longer part of my life. But based on what I've read here, and on the experience of a friend, I'm not sure you really escape SDV problems with a cableco DVR. They miss recordings too and there are many posts saying they are pretty bad in general.

I haven't kept up with the latest DTV Tivo boxes but there is a forum on them here.
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Old 02-22-2014, 09:55 AM   #26
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PPV and on-demand can be had with most cablecos DVR's, and at least PPV from both satellite providers. I understand DirecTV offers a TiVo based box, although I know nothing about it.
But they don't do Netflix which was your original complaint (or Amazon, Pandora, etc) so you will need an additional box?

For me, not being able to expand disk space (depending on what your cable company uses?) or pull shows off to my PC eliminates the cable companies DVR's.

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Old 02-22-2014, 10:09 AM   #27
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But they don't do Netflix which was your original complaint (or Amazon, Pandora, etc) so you will need an additional box?

For me, not being able to expand disk space (depending on what your cable company uses?) or pull shows off to my PC eliminates the cable companies DVR's.

Scott
There is clearly no "do everything" box available. While I am aware that I'm using 'very' old tech in the form of the S3 OLED boxes I have, and while the box fulfills much of its primary purpose well, the finicky TA's and the pretty bad Netflix performance are starting to get annoying.

The Roku 3 I ordered arrived, I'll install it this weekend and see how that is. I have an outboard 5.1 sound system that runs on optical, and the Roku does not have an optical output, so I also bought an HDMI switcher from Monoprice with optical out, and it will be interesting to see how it all integrates into the current system.

If it goes relatively painlessly, I'll stick with the S3's and see what comes up next in terms of tech.

As for pulling shows off to a PC (or even transferring them to another TiVo), once Time Warner set the do not copy flag for everything but network and local feeds, that became a LOT less useful to me.

TiVo could EASILY have fixed the problem of TiVo-TiVo transfer by implementing a 'move' instead of a 'copy' function, which would have allowed just a single copy of the program to exist, which was the whole point of the flag, but chose not to, then went with 'streaming' it to other machines in later models. I suspect the ignoring of the obvious 'move' implementation was to push people to buy the new streaming models.
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Old 02-23-2014, 01:32 PM   #28
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Well, I've ordered a Roku 3 box. We'll see how that goes.

Anyone know if Netflix and Amazon Instant send 5.1 audio (or is it just stereo)?
I'll answer my own question...

Yes, they both appear to send 5.1 audio through the Roku 3 (according to my receiver), although I haven't watched any effects-heavy loud movies yet to confirm by ear ;-).

I also bought a Monoprice 4x1 HDMI switcher with optical out to integrate everything (TiVo, Roku, BluRay), and that seems to work better than I expected. I was expecting some audio latency issues and lip flap, but haven't seen any yet. The switcher does have the BRIGHTEST LEDs I've ever seen, but I can still see OK with my remaining eyeball.
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Old 02-23-2014, 06:01 PM   #29
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I also bought a Monoprice 4x1 HDMI switcher with optical out to integrate everything (TiVo, Roku, BluRay), and that seems to work better than I expected. I was expecting some audio latency issues and lip flap, but haven't seen any yet. The switcher does have the BRIGHTEST LEDs I've ever seen, but I can still see OK with my remaining eyeball.
I ended up putting black paint over all but a tiny part of the LED. That toned it down to just nuclear. -- Doug
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Old 02-23-2014, 06:13 PM   #30
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