Is a TiVO with Tru2way still in the works?

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by buscuitboy, Feb 8, 2012.

  1. Feb 8, 2012 #1 of 29
    buscuitboy

    buscuitboy Member

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    Is tru2way technology ever gonna see the light of day? From what I have read online, my impression is that this technology has pretty much stalled. I was hoping to maybe see a consumer based TiVo that would support Tru2way of some kind so it could then also receive full On-Demand and PPV channels, but it looks like it isn't happening any time soon.

    I see how you can get TiVo branded boxes from certain cable companies that then support On-Demand and PPV, but then they are stripped of other key features that I like TiVo for (no Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, etc.). Pointless if you ask me.

    I was hoping there would maybe someday be a box you could simply pick up at a local retailer (like Best Buy) and get it ALL. Doesn't look like its gonna happen though. I guess that would make too much sense and threaten the cable company's overall bottom line.

    Probably another reason I see that these new TiVo Elites don't support a regular antenna like past models. More and more people have been dumping cable in favor of a straight OTA setup. Cable companies saw this as a serious potential threat to their business model and I think deamnded TiVo to remove that feature or they wouldn't play nice.
     
  2. Feb 8, 2012 #2 of 29
    nrc

    nrc Cracker Soul

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    Tru2Way is dead. The FCC is currently in the early stages of accepting comments on a next generation solution generally referred to as "Allvid" which would be an gateway box that would turn everything into standards based video over IP.
     
  3. Feb 8, 2012 #3 of 29
    slowbiscuit

    slowbiscuit FUBAR

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    Which was supposed to have been implemented this year, and so far all intents and purposes is equally as dead until the FCC gets serious about it.
     
  4. Feb 8, 2012 #4 of 29
    socrplyr

    socrplyr Active Member

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    Doubtful. As you said tru2way has pretty much stalled everywhere. Also, there were some discussions as to whether or not they would even be able to use their own UI as part of the tru2way spec set up by the cable companies was meant to allow the cable company to control the UI on any tru2way box. There was some back and forth about whether or not Tivo would be able to put the tru2way portions into a little applet like section (would allow access to VOD through cable's interface but their own for regular TV). All of this was rumors. In reality tru2way was really only an advantage for the cable company as they were the ones designing it. I think what needs to be done is an IP upstream method for 3rd party boxes to talk to the headend for SDV and VOD requests. tru2way is an overly complex method for providing that service.

    This issue is generally a result of content licensing. Netflix/Hulu/Amazon are not allowed (by their own content licenses) to be on a cable company box. It is not really the choice of any of the companies involved except the content providers.

    The Elites do not support OTA because of cost. Basically the chipsets available support up to 4 tuners. The Elite has 4 QAM tuners. It would cost extra to allow it to also pick up ATSC.
     
  5. Feb 8, 2012 #5 of 29
    bdraw

    bdraw Member

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    Like tru2way, AllVid appears to be dead. If it was going to happen, we would've heard about it already. Everyone I've talked to in the industry seems to agree that the FCC has already stopped working on it. No word on if they've moved on to something else, though? One thing is for sure, the FCC has to be keep trying or Congress has to re-write section 629 of the Telecom Act of 1996.
     
  6. Feb 8, 2012 #6 of 29
    Brad Bishop

    Brad Bishop Member

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    This is all so silly.

    TiVo has ethernet. Let it establish a secure connection to the cable's node for handling SDV. It'd be so much better than all of these other alternatives. It could work for everyone today.
     
  7. Feb 8, 2012 #7 of 29
    davezatz

    davezatz Funkadelic

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    The MSOs use it. It's just dead for retail. And as Ben says, AllVid is most likely dead too. Of course there will one day be a successor but it'll probably be something simpler than AllVid like an IP backchannel and instead of a physical CableCARD we'll go to digital certificates for authentication.
     
  8. Feb 8, 2012 #8 of 29
    mattack

    mattack Well-Known Member

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    Isn't/wasn't AllVid basically a superset of Tru2Way?
     
  9. Feb 8, 2012 #9 of 29
    NGeorge

    NGeorge Member

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    So what I don't understand is that if they cable co. Tivos (e.g. from RCN) are able to do On Demand through a software download, why can't a retail version?

    As in, when you enter your zip code and provider, you download the software the allows you to access RCN's On Demand as well as Amazon/Netflix/Etc. if it's a retail box.

    Everyone says CableCards can't do On Demand... yet it seems like these units can do it. Is it a technology issue (where the retail units don't have the RCN software, or can't communicate both ways whereas the RCS units can), or is it just a political issue where the cable companies don't want to offer retail units access to the On Demand content because they have Netflix, Hulu etc. as well?

    SUPPOSEDLY Comcast is going to open up their On Demand to retail units at some point in the future... I can't wait. Especially since they pulled all the additional HD feeds of HBO and Showtime sans the main feeds because "It's all available On Demand in HD for no extra charge!"

    --Nat
     
  10. davezatz

    davezatz Funkadelic

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    I wouldn't say political, but I would say these TiVos offering or to offer on demand will have worked out business deals with those provides... as there is a technical, engineering component - it has to be built with the cablecos having to provide access and integration. It's using what we're calling an IP backchannel for communication and may be or have been specific to providers with SeaChange technology in play.
     
  11. buscuitboy

    buscuitboy Member

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    Well, in all honesty, the On_Demand feature is the ONLY reason I use my Comcast digital box. And I have no desire in PPV so there is really no other reason to use a cable company provided box anyway. The features of a TiVo (MRV, online scheduling, pyTivo, Netflix, Amazon & other network services FAR outweigh the ON_Demand/PPV feature.

    The only other thing I wish TiVo boxes provided is some sort of caller ID. My parent's Brighthouse cable boxes have done this for years and I always thought this was kind of a cool feature. See who is calling while you are watching the rot box & decide whether to get up or not to get it. :) I realize they got rid of the phone jack on TiVos so its not possible on newer units, but still wish they had it. No biggie as I have gotten along without it this long anyway.
     
  12. aaronwt

    aaronwt UHD Addict

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    I always hated the Caller ID feature. My DirecTV Toshiba HD STB I had in 2001 had it. I tried it and it was just too annoying having it pop up every time the phone would ring. It's always been easier for me to just look at the CID on the Phone. Which is usually nearby. Otherwise they can leave a message when the voicemail picks up.
     
  13. nrc

    nrc Cracker Soul

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    Allvid appears to have stalled, but it's certainly nothing like Tru2way. Tru2way is not only merely dead but really most sincerely dead. Tru2way may be buried in some carriers' gear for some time to come, but for consumers it's dead and irrelevant.

    With Allvid there are still ongoing discussions between the FCC and the various parties about whether Allvid is needed and how it might be implemented. Interestingly, it seems like TiVo may have sold out on the topic.

    Back in September the Allvid Alliance (of which TiVo is a member) filed a pretty detailed proposal for rules which would implement Allvid using a set of existing DLNA standards with some extra topping for guide data.

    http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/ecfs/comment/view?id=6016842242

    At the end of September the FCC held a workshop for a discussion of Allvid among members of the industry.

    http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/ecfs/comment/view?id=6016844028

    After the workshop the Allvid Alliance submitted a filing saying that there is enough agreement to proceed with a notice of proposed rule making to hash out the sticking points.

    http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/ecfs/comment/view?id=6016844502

    Comcast followed up with a filing saying "is not". Interestingly, they state:

    http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/ecfs/comment/view?id=6016845786

    I would have expected TiVo to correct them if that were not the case, but TiVo has not filed any comments in support Allvid since that time. So it would seem that TiVo has decided that they're comfortable enough with the current state of their cable relationships that they don't have to push so hard for more open interoperability. Particularly since something as widely supported as DLNA could potentially open a flood of new competitors for them.

    Still, Allvid isn't dead. The Allvid Alliance and CEA keep nudging the FCC on the topic even though their inaction has led some to speculate that it has lost favor. Sooner or later the FCC will need to make a statement on the topic one way or the other. But right now nothing else is on the table. There has been no discussion of reviving any of the other technologies that have been proposed before, whether it's Tru2way <gak> or IP backchannel. If someone were pushing for a do-over on those they would have to file it publicly.
     
  14. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    AllVid is a fantastic idea and every consumer should pray that it sees the light of day. AllVid basically moves all tuning and authorization into a single gateway box and allows 3rd party devices to communicate with that gateway, and receive video streams from it, using standard IP protocols. By doing this they would open it up so that an AllVid based DVR or TV could access programming from ANY provider. So a single AllVid TiVo could record cable, satellite, U-Verse, FIOS, etc... As long as the provider has a gateway box using the AllVide spec then an AllVid TiVo could record form it. This would truly give consumers freedom of choice. Unlike now where a TiVo is single purpose (only works with cable or DirecTV) and can't be moved from one service to the other.

    AllVid would basically bring us back to the old S2 days when you could use a TiVo with any provider by simply hooking up the box/receiver to the analog input. Except that with AllVid the cable box would be capable of tuning 6 channels simultaneously, outputting the signal in pure digital format, and TiVo could communicate with it via IP instead of using IR blasters.

    Like I said AllVid is a great idea and I really, really, hope it eventually gets mandated.

    Dan
     
  15. andyw715

    andyw715 Well-Known Member

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    Cable monopolies will try thier hardest ($$$) to kill any of these. There isn't enough 3rd party (current cable card) devices out there in use to justify them putting any energy into it.

    If the cable co's do decide to implement something it will probably be an extension of existing tuner adaptor. The down link is there.
     
  16. slowbiscuit

    slowbiscuit FUBAR

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    Yep, just like with the state of cable TV channels today (mostly crappy), we see that the lowest denominator always wins (cable DVRs). So there is little incentive to make any of the third-party stuff work like it should, because the masses don't care.
     
  17. MichaelK

    MichaelK Active Member

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    Obviously I've been wrong the whole time but all these years I've often thought there's an oppurtunity for cabe to save money. To me 2way cablecard would save them from buying millions of boxes to rent and they instead could pawn that cost to consumers if the cea actually had a reason to stick a slot on every TV.
     
  18. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    You're assuming the cable boxes are loss leaders, but they're not. In the scheme of things the boxes are cheap and make back their costs several times over via rental fees. Also being in control of the UI allows them to steer you toward things like PPV, where they make even more money, and block 3rd party competition like Hulu, Netflix, etc... This is the main reason Tru2Way failed. They wanted the 3rd party devices to all be forced to use their UI, but companies like TiVo and Sony told them no way. They tried to compromise by saying they would use their UI when accessing VOD, but the cable companies insisted on an all or nothing approach so the whole thing fell apart.

    Unfortunately they're going to apply the same arguments to AllVid too. An AllVid bridge would be capable of outputting 6 streams, which means they would lose money by not requiring a box for every TV and not being able to charge "outlet fees". Plus the bridge would not have a UI so there would be no way for them to steer you toward PPV and they'd have no control over competing offerings.

    AllVid is very consumer friendly, but there is a lot about it the cable companies wont like which is why I fully expect them to fight it tooth and nail and do everything they can to squash it.

    Dan
     
  19. dlfl

    dlfl Cranky old novice

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    Yep, as in politics, there's no substitute for more intelligent and less apathetic "masses".
    Yep, they will go kicking and screaming, just like they have with CableCARD and Tuning Adapters. Unless there is some way AllVid can succeed without the cable companies' friendly cooperation (which seems impossible) it is going to be a similar failure.

    It is naive to think we (via the FCC) can force a complex technical system on businesses when it is against their interests, and expect good results.
     
  20. MichaelK

    MichaelK Active Member

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    I'm under the impression that the FCC regulations make it ILLEGAL for the boxes to be a loss leader. (obviously could be wrong).

    if they weren't so hostile they could have worked something out with the cea where everyone won. But they made it one-way cablecard so horrible that the CEA was hostile right back.
     

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