New cable company LUS Fiber "doesn't offer" Cable Card

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by slemaire195, Jul 19, 2010.

  1. slemaire195

    slemaire195 New Member

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    I remember reading a thread a long time ago about what to do when a cable company claims they don't have Cable Cards but I can't find it.

    A relatively new, municipally owned company called LUS Fiber (Lafayette Utilities System, lusfiber.com) won a court battle against Cox Communications a few years ago, who was fighting to keep the city from operating a cable TV network, and has finally implemented services in my area. We've been at an apartment that used Cox and I have a Cable Card with a TiVo Premiere, along with 20 Mbps internet, though we only got around 2 Mbps since the whole apartment shared the connection.

    We just moved into a house, and Cox's internet is really bad, 3.5 - 5 Megabits on a "Premier" 20 megabit connection for $57/mo. The technician checked for problems like noise in the lines and he said everything should be operating normally. My neighbor has a 30 Megabit LUS Fiber Internet connection for $45, and it is amazing. It's all I want from them, but I saw the TiVo Guided Setup has LUS Fiber in the list of available providers, so I'd like to get TV from them as well.

    LUS said they do not offer Cable Cards since their network is fiber to the home. Aren't all cable companies supposed to offer them regardless of how they get it in the home? It has to end in a coax connection to the TiVo anyway, and the cable card fits inside the TiVo, so I don't see why they would be excused from providing them. Would it be easier for me to keep Cox for the TV and switch to LUS Fiber for the internet, or should I file a complaint with the FCC against LUS in hopes of forcing them to offer the cable card?
     
  2. lew

    lew Well-Known Member

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    They're probably exempt. I wouldn't waste my time with a FAA complaint. What kind of DVR are they offering?
     
  3. slemaire195

    slemaire195 New Member

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    It's the Motorola box with the ugliest user interface ever.
     
  4. mattack

    mattack Well-Known Member

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    I'd say try an fcc complaint. Isn't Verizon "fiber" too?
     
  5. gastrof

    gastrof Hubcaps r in fashion

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    Potato and pen.
    I think they might be interested if someone was installing a cable system on an airplane. :p
     
  6. lew

    lew Well-Known Member

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    Time for new glasses or a larger font. I wouldn't waste my time with a FCC complaint.

    Small cable systems are exempt from the cable card requirement (separable security).

    The system is owned by local government, I wouldn't be surprised if that was also grounds for an exemption.

    It's also possible the system is IPTV based (like ATT U-verse). Tivo won't work with that.
     
  7. wesmills

    wesmills New Member

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    LUS Fiber uses Microsoft Mediaroom, functionally the same system used by AT&T U-Verse. That does not support CableCARDs.
     
  8. classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

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    It is not that it is Mediaroom (although most IPTV providers use that), it is that it is IPTV which means no Cablecard or Series 3/4 support.
     
  9. slemaire195

    slemaire195 New Member

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    Mar 10, 2010
    LOL

    What a bummer then, because I really want out with Cox Internet. I called to get a price quote on TV only yesterday, and the girl offered to lock my price in for two years. Noo thank you.

    We do have Cox fiber at work, and it is very fast. When we first got it, I used to download the trials from Microsoft's website just to see the 3.5 MB/s speed, even if I didn't really need the program.

    I always have a low resolution video stream when using Netflix on my TiVo with Cox, so I'm going to see if LUS fiber makes a difference. It would be much easier if Cox offered residential fiber services in my area.
     
  10. johnstj

    johnstj New Member

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    Sorry to be late to this thread....

    But you can use TiVo w/o the card on LUS Fiber. The channel changing IR devices work. So you can schedule and record. You just can't do VOD and such.

    If you don't have an HD TiVo you can use the cable box for HD and the rest of the time use TiVo.

    I had used TiVo as my central interface for years and still prefer it. But MediaRoom is not as insufferable as the older software that you were probably thinking of when you referred to the software as clunky... that's been much improved.
     
  11. classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

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    That is only with Series 1/2.

    The point the OP was making is that the Series 3/4 models (which they hace and want to keep using) cannot be used with that provider, becasue they only work with broadcast and real cable.
     
  12. lew

    lew Well-Known Member

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    The S3 and Premier DVRs only work with OTA and with cable systems that use cable cards. I'm not sure what the term "real cable" means. FiOS is fiber optic to the house, uses cable cards and works fine with HD tivos. A few small (mostly private) cable systems don't encrypt their channels. They don't use, nor need, cablecards. Tivo won't work in those system. They're certainly "real cable". Tivo doesn't (currently) work with IPTV.
     
  13. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    just for clarity since we get enough threads on this
    all models of TiVo will work with analog cable as well. You do not necessarily need a cable card for them to work.

    now for LUS being IPTV and similar to AT&T Uverse - then likely a TiVo will not work that is directly connected to the cable.
     
  14. lew

    lew Well-Known Member

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    There was an analog "bug" with S3 tivos. It's not clear if 100% of the issues was solved with the most recent software update.

    It goes without saying you don't get HD with analog. An increasing number of cable systems are eliminating all (or almost all) analog stations. I wouldn't suggest anyone purchase a S3 tivo and plan on using it with analog cable. I don't think the Premier has the analog but but I still wouldn't spend the money to just use it with analog cable.
     
  15. Chris Fox

    Chris Fox New Member

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    I don't have access to FIOS here, but I do develop products for the fiber-to-the-home. The likely reason FIOS can use cable cards is that most of their deployment is RF video based (the traditional cable coax), instead of IPTV. The video is sent as a separate wavelength down the fiber and then out a coax connector at/in the house. I can think of two reasons to do this:

    1. There is not enough bandwidth in the older BPON systems (622 Mbps downstream, usually split to 32 homes), so having broadcast TV on a non-ethernet wavelength provides more bandwidth for internet.

    2. IPTV is a finicky beast to get working properly, so it made it easier to get into the TV market with RF.

    Now that costs of GPON units are coming down and IPTV is being successfully deployed, things will probably change. 2.488 Gbps downstream to 32 (or 64) homes allows for the broadcast channels to be sent over IP. I'd guess that IPTV STB costs are lower (or will soon be) than RF STBs.

    Bottom line is that when/if FIOS goes to IPTV, Tivos will no longer be able be used (unless there is some IPTV based cablecard I'm not aware of)...

    Chris
     
  16. acvthree

    acvthree Active Member

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    This is pretty much it.

    There are three wavelengths sent from the CO the the Optical Network Terminator on the side of the house. One for telephone, one for data and one for video. Each is converted by the ONT to POTS, coax video and either CAT5 ethernet or MOCA.

    The coax video is compliant with cable standards and used cable cards.

    The exception is that video on demand is sent over the data line with temporarily increase throughput.

    There have been rumors of IP based FIOS but nothing really showing up yet.

    I haven't heard of any plans to swap out all the BPON for GPONS. It would be expensive and additional near term expenses related to FIOS is not on Verizon's agenda.
     
  17. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    the point is - they accept analog and if the person gets analog at their house and does not want to go digital yet - they can still get one of the newer models and use it.

    I have heard very little lately about the analog bug that affected some boxes but then I ahve not gone looking for posts on it
     
  18. lew

    lew Well-Known Member

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    The point is the bug wasn't that rare. It wasn't fair to say the boxes supported analog when tivo offered no solution (other then getting a cable card) to affected subscribers.

    I'm not sure if the last software fixed the bug If not I wouldn't tell people the S3 series supports analog..
     
  19. Phantom Gremlin

    Phantom Gremlin Active Member

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    Ha. The FiOS people that Verizon dumped off into Frontier will certainly be safe from IPTV. Frontier is all about squeezing money out of existing plant; no danger of Frontier incurring any "additional near term expenses".
     
  20. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    My point is the bug was not all that common either.
    all my boxes support analog - in fact I have not a single cable card installed yet. I get some digital off OTA instead and do not bother to send the cable company yet more money. I have not seen a gray screen since the early days of my TiVo HD
     

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