Is lack of two way cable cards (no PPV, no VOD, no Grid) keeping you from buying a S3

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by Rebate_King, Aug 8, 2007.

How do you feel?

  1. Yes it bothers me, I'll wait until 2 way cable cards hit the market

    17 vote(s)
  2. Yes it bothers me, but I ditched the cable box for an S3 anyway

    20 vote(s)
  3. No it doesn't bother me, I current have an S3 or plan on buying one soon.

    106 vote(s)
  4. No it doesn't bother me, I will hold off buying for other reasons (MRV, TTG, eSata)

    17 vote(s)
  1. Aug 8, 2007 #1 of 38

    Rebate_King New Member

    Nov 10, 2004


    It does bother me that I will be losing some great features if I get a S3 unit and use cable cards. I like having video on demand at my finger tips.

    Does this bother you also? and is it holding you back from ditching your cable box for a S3 unit?
  2. Aug 8, 2007 #2 of 38

    Saturn Lord of the Rings

    Apr 10, 2001
    Amazon Unbox is sufficient for the Movies on Demand we used to occasionally use with the cable box. And we could still technically use the cable box, but I gave it back to the cable company thinking it would lower my bill (it didn't.) Oh well.

    Never used PPV.

    MRV and TTG might be nice, but before the S3 I had an S1, so I never had those features anyway. I'm hoping they'll enable MRV on the S3 and make it compatible with S2s. That way I can swap my S1 for one of the two S2s sitting on a shelf doing nothing and get MRV between the bedroom and family room TiVos.
  3. Aug 8, 2007 #3 of 38

    DTSDude New Member

    May 24, 2006
    A somewhat difficult poll though. I never would have tossed out $700 for a full on S3. Especially with the prospect of SDV, or because of no two way.

    When they put out the $299 TiVo HD which I used a 30% off coupon and $150 in GC's to pick up, bringing my outlay to $119 out the door I couldn't resist. Heck I didn't even think about it twice.
  4. Aug 8, 2007 #4 of 38

    ah30k Well-Known Member

    Jan 8, 2006
    I bought one, but this is certainly keeping me from buying more.
  5. Aug 8, 2007 #5 of 38

    DonRoeber New Member

    Nov 30, 2003


    Never used the On-Demand stuff, so I don't miss it.

    However, a coworker of mine uses it all the time, and despite not liking the Comcast DVR, won't get a tivo because they can't give up the VOD stuff.
  6. Aug 8, 2007 #6 of 38

    kido New Member

    Aug 17, 2006
    Chicago, IL
    SDV is a just a bandaid for cable companies. Eventually, they will need to upgrade their capacity and drop analog and go digital in order to stay competitive. If most of the HD channels are tuned in by someone in the service area most of the time anyway, then SDV really only helps offer programming that caters to a small audience with specific interests. In other words, obscure channels most people don't watch. Why spend so much for such a little return? Dropping analog cuts down on piracy and offers much more to the consumer than implementing SDV.
  7. Aug 8, 2007 #7 of 38

    ajwees41 Well-Known Member

    May 7, 2006
    All cable cards are two way. Tivo didn't include two way hardware in the S3 or tivoHD is the reason ppv,OnDemand don't work.

  8. Aug 8, 2007 #8 of 38

    drew00001 New Member

    Jan 13, 2007
    PPV has always been available to most TiVO HD and S3 owners, as long as your cable company lets you order by phone. I have ordered PPV on my S3 several times without problem with Seattle Comcast. The availability is common. I even recorded and save.
  9. Aug 8, 2007 #9 of 38

    sfhub Well-Known Member

    Jan 6, 2007
    I agree SDV is a band-aid, but compared to dropping analog (and all the boxes they will need to add) SDV isn't really that costly. It is mostly a software upgrade for existing VOD-capable boxes. Of course there are back-end changes as well, but that is no where near the cost of a change that requires half their customers to get STBs.

    I think they will gradually drop expanded basic, but they don't want to do it all at once, and will wait until a larger percentage of customers are already on digital, at which point they will do a hard drop of expanded basic like they did in Chicago. Eventually they will drop limited basic as well. Until they get more bandwidth, either through dropping channels or infrastructure upgrades, they will be happy to do a software-based band-aid to alleviate the bandwidth problem.
  10. GoHokies!

    GoHokies! O2->CO2 Converter

    Sep 21, 2005
    At least tell the full story instead of a half truth - Tivo didn't include this hardware because they are prohibited by the Open Cable lisencing agreement to unclude 2 way funtionality unless you're OCAP compliant (meaning that the cable company can download their software to your box and blow away the Tivo software).

    Also, there is a grid style guide available in the S3 (if that's what the OP meant by "no grid").
  11. sfhub

    sfhub Well-Known Member

    Jan 6, 2007
    They could have included the hardware w/o enabling it, making a future software upgrade easier if the licensing ever got worked out (or something like SDV came about)
  12. davecramer74

    davecramer74 New Member

    Mar 17, 2006
    I use VOD too much to purchase a tivo. the lack of 2 way support has not only turned me away from the tivo, but from mediacenter pc's as well. i was really hoping this new tivo would have been and opencable 2.0 device but looks like tivo isnt going to go that route with them already handing their software over to run on the cable co's hardware.
  13. richsadams

    richsadams Well-Known Member

    Jan 4, 2003
    We had several Comcast HD Moto boxes and after wanting to smash them to bits for all of the problems that they had we ended up purchasing an S3 and never looked back...couldn't be happier. We'll probably replace our S2’s with TiVo HD’s once they get the bugs worked out.

    We can still get PPV and IMHO most of the VOD wasn't worth watching or available elsewhere. MRV/TTG and eSATA support are on the way so that's not a concern either.

    FWIW and AFAIK all we really need are more acronyms! :D
  14. kido

    kido New Member

    Aug 17, 2006
    Chicago, IL

    So, with SDV using existing boxes, a cable company will spend the money, do the upgrade and receive $0 in additional revenue for their efforts as they have not placed a single new STB in the field. They still have limited capacity and FIOS just got approval to start selling services in their area. Oops. But they do now offer the Ice Fishing channel in HD. :)

    SDV has been available to cable companies for almost 10 years. If it was really going to take off, it would have by now. The fact is that SDV is best used as a marketing tool and to lock people in to using the cable company's equipment. This last fact might also cause the FCC to add restrictions to SDV at some point in the future. It's too much trouble without much return.
  15. Dogen

    Dogen New Member

    Jun 13, 2004
    Austin, TX
    For some reason I never much cared for PPV/VOD but I LOVE Amazon Unbox. I realize this doesn't make a lot of sense. Maybe it's that Unbox has stuff on it I would actually want to watch?
  16. smbaker

    smbaker Well-Known Member

    May 24, 2003
    I never use On-Demand, so it's not an issue for me. In fact, I don't have, nor do I think I have ever had a set-top box. Personally, I don't want a cablecard, be it unidirectional or bidirectional, anywhere near my Tivo. All it does is reduce the reliability of the Tivo [look at all the cablecard complaints], which has perfectly good ATSC and QAM tuners.

    I did use amazon unbox for the very first time on my HD. I was fairly impressed with how well it worked, although it did seem to take a couple of hours to download (longer than I had anticipated), and would not let me watch the program until the download had completed. Tivo should get that fixed. It should work like MRV so that you can watch while downloading, otherwise it won't be competitive with PPV.

    If Tivo could integrate with Netflix, then I would be very, very happy. I assume this is a no-no due to competition with amazon, but it still would be nice!
  17. SugarBowl

    SugarBowl Member

    Jan 4, 2007
    north carolina
    I don't really look at it like i'm losing anything. All of those 2 way features are a way to keep your wallet open to the cable company.
  18. Leo_N

    Leo_N Lucky 200 member

    Nov 12, 2003
    Wisconsin, USA
    As long as I can keep getting PPV via the 800 phone line I am good. I don't order often (typically just MMA fights) so it isn't too much of a hassle.

    Although, if they added some type of USB dongle to the S3 to allow it via the internet or even if they let you order PPV through your account logon via PC on the internet, that would be even better. I'd probably end up ordering more too. :eek:
  19. Shawn95GT

    Shawn95GT Tivo, in HD!

    Oct 7, 2005
    Phoenix, AZ
    Doesn't VoD kind of negate the need for Tivo? I see them as complimenting each other. VoD content is limited. If VoD would let you get anything whenever you want it would be like the cable company is the mother of all Tivos :).

    We don't have VoD here on Cox's Phoenix system, but if I decide to subscribe to some of the VoD offerings I'll just add a STB to my entertainment center and use it for VoD only.... maybe pair up one of my S2s with it.
  20. sfhub

    sfhub Well-Known Member

    Jan 6, 2007
    The catalyst for all the bandwidth saving (or expansion) techniques like SDV, dropping expanded basic, etc. is the onset of more HD channels.

    In the last 10 years, how many HD channels launched? Now compare to what is expected in the next 3 years.

    Your analogy is like saying fiber optic has been around for 20 years, if it was really going to take off, it would have by now.

    The reason it is taking off now is because there is finally a catalyst in that the # of video apps are increasing.

    Personally I'm against SDV if it cannot be made to coexist with UDCP products like TiVo, but have no problems with it if they come up with a solution before mass deployment.

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