This is what I expected

Discussion in 'TiVo Stream 4K' started by Dan203, May 13, 2020.

  1. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    This is what I thought we were getting with this device...

    TiVo's Next-Gen Platform for managed Android TV™ devices

    I thought they were just using that platform with Sling replacing the MSO Cloud DVR. Instead we essentially got an app that barely integrates with the device at all with the exception of the special button on the remote.
     
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  2. moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    Mission...
    The Stream4K UI is a complete joke IMO, worse than the current TiVO DVRs as far as integration with streaming services. To make matters worse the TiVo database on streaming titles is woefully incomplete. You would think that now they have a device that actually focuses on integration with streaming services they may have done something to fix the incomplete data, but it's the same junk we've had for years.
     
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  3. cybergrimes

    cybergrimes Legend

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    Yeah I thought it was going to be a custom UI, something unique to pull ahead of the Android TV crowd. The marketing and product pages leading to launch didn't make it clear, at least to me.
     
  4. jimpmc

    jimpmc Active Member

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    I'm not going to be that harsh -- given the pricepoint it is basically a Chromecast 4k with the remote and full Android TV. It's not like we paid a premium for it, compared to the nVidia Shield @ $149/$199.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2020
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  5. moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    Right, I think the hardware is worth $50, but the TiVo overlay is not worth much of anything.
     
  6. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    The biggest disappointment for me is the remote. I love the basic size and shape, but the button placement is wonky and the lack of play/pause is silly when most apps expect it.
     
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  7. runbadgerrun

    runbadgerrun New Member

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    I really thought we would get the Hydra experience on an AndroidTV platform with the Tivo UI taking over the device. The experience in that video is much more in line with what I was expecting. I am not too disappointed though. I have learned that the UI for AndroidTV is much better than Roku IMHO. So it will at least replace my Roku or at least will when my free AppleTV sub expires.
     
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  8. moyekj

    moyekj Well-Known Member

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    I agree the lack of dedicated play/pause button is a silly oversight, but easily overcome by re-mapping another button (I used button 2) for that function.
     
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  9. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    Someone mentioned this in another thread and they were exactly right... what I really wanted was a Mini that ran Android TV. I don't really care about Sling integration, I'm going to cancel that before the trial expires. What I really wanted was a complete TiVo UI that could run all the modern apps. I knew this device wouldn't integrate with my TiVo like a Mini, but I still expected the UI to be more or less a Mini without the ability to play my TiVo recordings.

    And really why doesn't TiVo do that? They could sell it in tandem with a new OTA DVR, perhaps headless to make it cheaper, and recreate the full TiVo experience for people instead of this knockoff. If they could also integrate it with Sling or some other OTT service for the cord cutters then great. I'm sure the hardware needed for this would be more expensive but $100-$150 for a new Mini wouldn't be out of the question for most people.
     
  10. Acerxz

    Acerxz Member

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    I don't even understand why they released this at all. All they needed to do was make an app that turns your
    android tv, roku, Apple TV into a mini. They could have just released that to the various play stores and charged for it. Why make hardware? Most people already have a streamer box of choice. I have a shield and it's awesome. Why would I buy this android tv device from tivo? It makes no sense.
     
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  11. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    To keep their brand relevant and capitalize on one of their best aspects... their remote. (although this particular version isn't that great)

    Also releasing an app that acts like a Mini wouldn't work as well as you'd think. TiVos record the raw input stream from your cable company, which in a lot of cases isn't compatible with most streaming hardware. Most streaming devices can't decode interlaced video, MPEG-2 video or even MP2 audio without resorting to software decoders which, for anyone that's ever used VLC on a streaming stick knows, can be hit and miss. To maximize compatibility they'd need to use the transcoder like they do mobile streaming. The problem there is that it's not very reliable and doesn't provide the best user experience. Anyone that uses the streaming app can tell you that it's not the best user experience and not really ideal for heavy use.

    Although I think there is still a possibility they could release an app like this for Android TV. Perhaps not Apple or Roku, but maybe for this new device. It wont work that great, and a lot of people will probably complain about it, but I still think there is a possibility we'll see this eventually. Although I wouldn't hold my breath.
     
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  12. jimpmc

    jimpmc Active Member

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    As others have mentioned, the # of TiVo DVR subs is small -- so providing playback from a TiVo DVR as the main selling point is niche. I agree it would have been nice to have a TiVo or Mini that also ran Android TV. But in addition to being a small market, that probably would have cost too much and taken too much time to get the hardware right. They basically rebranded the existing AirTV and added the Stream App.

    There is a real need for universal search and content tracking. Many companies are vying for the space -- even Google. The biggest payback for the developers on that is probably all of the data on viewing habits, etc.
     
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  13. cybergrimes

    cybergrimes Legend

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    I wonder though, 99% of apps on Android TV use Exoplayer for playback, which seems pretty versatile to me. It handles MPEGTS just fine, with this new device I've played a bit of 1080i OTA too without a bother. I can't speak for those cable company recordings though.
     
  14. BigJimOutlaw

    BigJimOutlaw Well-Known Member

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    I just got a Sony TV with Android TV two days ago.

    So it comes down to the app, and I can't figure out what makes Tivo's app supporting a handful of services remotely worth an extra $50 when a free one like Reelgood exists that covers tons of services. The recommendation algorithm? Meh.

    If/when this thing can stream from DVRs, I'll reevaluate. I'm no longer giving Tivo any interest-free loans in the hopes their products deliver in the future.
     
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  15. Dan203

    Dan203 Super Moderator Staff Member TCF Club

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    Maybe the main CPU in these devices has gotten fast enough that using software based decoding isn't as big of a deal as it use to be. But I don't think TiVos system is really designed for that. Their hardware, including the Mini, uses a chip based encryption to be able to stream and decode the original recording. For the mobile app they transcode on the TiVo itself (or the external Stream which also has that encryption chip) and then convert to HLS with https encryption. Maybe they could forgo the transocde and just do the HLS remux, but that could still present some of the same usability issues as the current mobile app. Any sort of conversion would introduce latency in trick play.
     
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  16. foghorn2

    foghorn2 Well-Known Member

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    Streaming off a Tivo DVR seems like a dead deal. This new device for $50 is a bargain for a Android TV device. Just wait for all the bug fixes, then never launch the TiVO Stream app, just use the apps you like. The integration with Sling is a joke, its just a troll app right now. Time will tell if its really useful for anything.
     
  17. foghorn2

    foghorn2 Well-Known Member

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    They really did not make the hardware, its just based of a generic Andoid TV developer dongle, slightly modified for Tivo

    https://www.seirobotics.net/atv-hdmi-dongle
     
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  18. Acerxz

    Acerxz Member

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    I know. What I'm saying is there is no point. They could have just released the app, but as the app is right now how many of you would pay for it?
     
  19. shwru980r

    shwru980r Well-Known Member

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    I think people are willing to pay a premium for the mini to forego additional outlet and equipment charges from the cable company. Tivo isn't going to disrupt that revenue stream. Even the older model minis sell at a good price on amazon or ebay.
     
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  20. trip1eX

    trip1eX imo, afaik, feels like to me, *exceptions, ~aprox

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    I haven't used the STReam but from what I read on here it's exactly what I expected.

    ...because I've used TE4, I have experienced Tivo's integration of streaming with the recordings on their DVR and my streaming device happens to also do a 1 UI for all streaming services that has given me some insight into the some of the business issues as well usability issues of a 1 UI future. Plus I knew this was Tivo's first attempt and that they are on their 2nd merger in a short period and that they don't design the hardware themselves any longer and they've laid off lots of people. And after the 2nd merger they are still going to offload the product division.

    Not saying that I heard was completely bad. But just pretty much as expected. STreams your stuff. Does fine at it. But you're not missing out on anything by not getting the Tivo STream 4k except not having a more rough around the edges product gen 1 product.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2020

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