TiVo, a leader in failure?

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by DAccardi, Feb 6, 2009.

  1. Feb 7, 2009 #41 of 104
    ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    correct that POS was not derived from TiVo ideas and obviously showed DISH that it had a lot of work to do to figure out how to make a useable DVR
    the facts are that TiVo did approach DISH about making a DVR for them before the TiVo standalone came out. DISH showed interest in doing a deal and got talks to the pint of TiVo presenting a prototype DVR to DISH to show how it would perform. Soon after that the prototype disappeared and DISH said they changed their mind.
    In the long winded court case that has taken many years - the jury found that DISH wilfully infringed Tivo patents and that the early DISH DVR models after the Microsoft fiasco did indeed utilize the approach invented by TiVo. Those are the facts, and DISH was just told by a judge that they do not get to retry those facts and so there is no need to do so here either.


    and the rest of this is only half correct. That being that of course DISH looks at direct competition with DirectTV but also does indeed look at cable and standalone DVRs as competition to its now independent DVR division.
     
  2. Feb 7, 2009 #42 of 104
    fallingwater

    fallingwater New Member

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    You sound a bit defensive! But whatever...

    The simple question, which I asked earlier, is what's different about E*'s DVR design than all others. Is the basis for TiVo's suit the fact that its prototype disappeared while in E*'s hands?

    Perhaps then E* will consider producing a QAM capable DVR with an analog tuner as well. That'd be worth considering as long as it was available at a flat-rate Lifetime Service price, provided manual QAM mapping, the capability of employing exchangeable external standard HDDs (such capability costs $40 now), and two discrete video outputs (as their VIP DVR's do now).

    If they paid royalties to TiVo, TiVo couldn't complain, and could only improve as a result of a competitor offering features unavailable from TiVo.
     
  3. Feb 7, 2009 #43 of 104
    Boulder345

    Boulder345 New Member

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    Tivo has had a good run thus far. Open source is a threat to every software company, and it the end that is what Tivo really is - SaaS (Software as a Service).

    IMHO Tivo marketing has gotten weaker over the past couple of years. Without strong marketing and strong executive leadership no high tech company can survive.
     
  4. Feb 7, 2009 #44 of 104
    nrc

    nrc Cracker Soul

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    No, the basis is that Dish infringed on a set of specific software and hardware features that TiVo developed to make a responsive DVR practical and cost effective. The fact that they examined a prototype which was never returned simply strengthened TiVo's case that the infringement was willful.

    We don't know who else might be infringing TiVo's patents. A small company trying to sue multiple big companies at the same time doesn't make sense. It makes more sense to pick the best case you have, win in court, and then use that leverage to extract agreements from other companies with the the need for an expensive court case.
     
  5. Feb 7, 2009 #45 of 104
    nrc

    nrc Cracker Soul

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    While I would love to see OSS provide more and better competition for TiVo it will have to be a commercialized version if it's going be able to deal with the cable cards and video download services. Without access to digital content beyond OTA OSS isn't an option for most people.

    TiVo has wisely scaled back marketing for their standalone boxes to bring expenses in line with their subscriber base. No amount of marketing is going to sell enough standalone boxes to make their costs when most consumers are satisfied with a cheap and easy (if inferior) solution from the programming provider.

    Eventually improved cable support or online content may make it worthwhile for TiVo to increase marketing for their standalone boxes. But now is not the time to spend marketing on a premium product.
     
  6. Feb 7, 2009 #46 of 104
    DAccardi

    DAccardi Tivo Special Member

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  7. Feb 7, 2009 #47 of 104
    ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    yes, the whole basis of the multi million dollar award was just that :rolleyes:You gloss right over that the suit is over and TiVo won and was already awarded the money. If you just want to post silly stuff then have fun with that but obviously the actual facts get in your way.
     
  8. Feb 8, 2009 #48 of 104
    fallingwater

    fallingwater New Member

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    Where did I gloss over that TiVo won the lawsuit. My link to TiVo's Press Release is the first post in this thread which spells out in detail the initial damages which have been awarded.

    I asked twice about what constituted the core of TiVo's lawsuit before you replied. Your reply finally put the lawsuit in perspective.

    Information about the particulars of the missing prototype DVR incident is skimpy at best. Do you know of anything more substantive (such as trial transcripts) than this quote from Carlton Bale's blog?
    http://www.carltonbale.com/2007/11/switching-to-tivo-hd-and-leaving-directv/#comment-3725

    Carlton Bale Says:

    December 21st, 2007 at 8:19 pm
    Tracy, let me be honest with you: I hate it when employees of a company leave self-serving comments without divulging their affiliation. I feel that it's unethical marketing.

    Since you asked, here are the reasons I would not chose Dish Network.
    1) Dish Network is not free and Over-the-Air broadcasts are.
    2) Dish Network does not offer HD local stations in all markets that over-the-air local networks cover.
    3) The Dish Network DVR offers none of the advanced features offered by a TiVo HD. Did you read the post above? Multi-room viewing, TiVo-to-Go, the support of third-party software that allows you play any video stored on your PC on your TiVo, enhanced conflict resolution, overlap protection, etc.

    4) I feel that Dish Network is infringing on several patents held by TiVo. A jury, an appeals court, and the U.S. patent office all agree with this view. I read that TiVo gave Echostar a prototype satellite receiver DVR in the late 1990s. It's my opinion that Echostar unlawfully copied that technology and used it in their own receiver without paying the TiVo, the owners of that intellectual property.
    5) DirecTV just brought online a new satellite and have more HD channels and options than Dish Network. If I were going to go back to satellite, I'd chose DirecTV again.
     
  9. Feb 8, 2009 #49 of 104
    ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    you seemed ready to retry the whole thing in this thread (and maybe I perceived that incorrectly) and I was being preemptive about it and pounding on the fact that the trial is done and DISH found to willfully infringe.

    The missing prototype was mentioned in the trial as a piece of circumstantial evidence, specifically to the willful part. I am not going to go digging for it though, since it has no bearing on future happenings in the contempt part of the the whole court mess anyhow.
     
  10. Feb 9, 2009 #50 of 104
    fallingwater

    fallingwater New Member

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    OK.

    Learning that E* pulled out of a proposed deal with TiVo and didn't return TiVo's prototype DVR is what enabled me to make sense of TiVo's lawsuit. Until you supplied that info it just didn't add up. Google wasn't helpful without a starting point.
     
  11. Feb 9, 2009 #51 of 104
    samo

    samo New Member

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    Not exactly true. TiVo offered Dish unsolicited prototype to evaluate their DVR. After evaluation Dish decided to go with Microsoft, mostly because TiVo was a start-up with nothing more than clumsy SA prototype and Microsoft - well it was Microsoft. The prototype was lost like many other unsolicited prototypes that start-ups send to big companies. Emotional part of the story probably affected 12 technically illiterate people who decided on infringement, but by now after so many years and appeals the infringement has been established by courts and it makes no difference if Dish really infringed or just had lousy attorneys.
     
  12. Feb 9, 2009 #52 of 104
    gonzotek

    gonzotek tivo_xml developer

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    And of course, those two options aren't necessarily mutually exclusive. ;)
     
  13. Feb 10, 2009 #53 of 104
    ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    you can try and spin this for your bias toward DISH samo, but it is just not the innocent case as you propose above. I do believe there was evidence as well about how the specific DVR models from DISH did indeed have designs that INFRINGED on TiVo. Also there were multiple meetings between TiVo and DISH in which the deal was discussed - maybe TiVo was doing a hard sell but hardly unsolicited.

    PS - the "lousy" attorneys have artfully stalled and delayed the verdict at every turn. they have a reputation as very skilled in down and dirty in many courtrooms and the reputation spills over to DISH management as well.

    Your Poor, Poor DISH was treated so unfairly and just had poor legal counsel spin in the post had me LOL.
     
  14. Feb 10, 2009 #54 of 104
    fallingwater

    fallingwater New Member

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    So you're saying that TiVo pitched the prototype DVR to E* before E* and MS entered into the Dishplayer deal. Too bad E* lost track of it! Emotions often trump technicalities, this time to the tune of over $100,000,000!

    And with perfect 20-20 hindsight, it's equally unfortunate that E* chose to partner with MS. Dishplayer was a disaster which MS ultimately resurrected as UltimateTV, the MS solo product DVR for DirecTV which was much more reliable.

    ---

    OT, but E*'s DVR fee shenanigans convinced me never to pay for DVR service on a monthly basis. My Dishplayer remained pause-n'-play until Dish offered a flat fee promo that began, I think, for three years but morphed into Lifetime Service.

    The best thing about Dishplayer/UTV was MS's EPG's, as good as Starsight's and better than ReplayTV's, which IMHO is still the best generally available.

    E* is probably TiVo's main competitor these days. If E* pays royalties to TiVo but still competes with it, that's got to be a good thing for everybody!
     
  15. Feb 10, 2009 #55 of 104
    fallingwater

    fallingwater New Member

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  16. Feb 11, 2009 #56 of 104
    berkshires

    berkshires New Member

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    I bet if you look back historically, they haven't made money even including royalties and judgements from lawsuits.
     
  17. Feb 11, 2009 #57 of 104
    DAccardi

    DAccardi Tivo Special Member

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    Well they did make money from this lawsuit. Funny how this forum works, noone wanted to admit that TiVo is not really making money yet from the TiVo itself but they will keep telling you what they got in a lawsuit.
     
  18. Feb 12, 2009 #58 of 104
    ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

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    umm - it is common knowledge on the board that TiVo business model is to make the money from the subscription and from business deals. There is nothing there that "has to be admitted" :rolleyes:
    Everyone also agrees that TiVo is in a tough market and number of DVR units sold is pretty well tied to the cost of the DVR hardware itself.
    You are not breaking new ground with this analysis.
     
  19. Feb 12, 2009 #59 of 104
    ah30k

    ah30k Well-Known Member

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    I don't even understand what his/her point is.

    Lets see...
    A * No one wanted to admit that TiVo is not really making money yet from the TiVo itself
    B * but they will keep telling you what they got in a lawsuit.

    What does A have to do with B?
     
  20. Feb 12, 2009 #60 of 104
    regdor

    regdor New Member

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    Just popped in to read this from the UK. Good debate!
    Difficult to understand as much of the tech stuff is different.
    Many of us wish we had a newer Tivo as we are stuck with series ones from about 2000. However Tivo have a loyal following and we still debate why none of the other devices come close to matching our Tivos after all these years.
    We have to contend with the all powerful Murdoch SkyTV(satellite)! They are pretty litigious and had a big fight with our (only) cable co.
    From what you are saying it seems we will never see a new UK tivo.
    Shame, some folks love them like a family pet.
     

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