TiVo support for IPTV

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by WorldBandRadio, Oct 14, 2018.

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  1. Sep 7, 2019 #321 of 355
    slowbiscuit

    slowbiscuit FUBAR

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    It is a logical assumption to say that IPTV growth means QAM channel reduction, but we have no evidence that it is happening anytime soon. What folks assume Comcast's many fiefdoms will do is often wrong.
     
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  2. Sep 7, 2019 #322 of 355
    mschnebly

    mschnebly Well-Known Member

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    And it's often right. When you look on Comcast's site here for service and ALL they show is IPTV service I'd say they are trying to quickly move that direction. Why would they make the only way to get the old service and boxes by calling and arguing or driving down to their store? I would take all this as "it's happening soon". Now soon to me and soon to you might be 2 different things. I see within a couple of years as being very soon.
     
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  3. Sep 7, 2019 #323 of 355
    chiguy50

    chiguy50 Well-Known Member

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    I have no particular insight into Comcast's corporate business planning, but it appears to me that the "fiefdom" scenario is rapidly becoming a thing of the past. Their organization into a hierarchical regional structure reporting to just three geographical divisions (Northeast, Central, and West) indicates to me an effort to impose standardization on the disparate entities they have absorbed and to unify formerly chaotic standards.

    This is a gradual process that has been ongoing for several years, but I imagine that two to three years from now (seconding mschnebly's post above) all of Comcast's residential customers will be subject to the same set of billing and programming standards (with the possible exception of certain outlier areas due to local peculiarities). At the very least, I strongly suspect that that is the strategic vision at play.
     
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  4. Sep 7, 2019 #324 of 355
    compnurd

    compnurd Well-Known Member

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    Not in the Pittsburgh area. Signing up defaults you to a X1 installation with there MG1 box

    There are still Comcast markets that can’t push 150mbps. While some larger markets may go all
    IPTV in the next 1-2 years they are well beyond that for a lot of there smaller markets
     
  5. Sep 7, 2019 #325 of 355
    WVZR1

    WVZR1 Active Member

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    If you're in a Comcast/Xfinity service area you need to have all of your conversations 'in person' preferably in a 'RETAIL STORE' but that 'RETAIL STORE' likely isn't in your Service/Billing area either.

    16 or so months ago I had an issue with Xfinity. Service that I had for better than 24 months I was told would increase by $70 primarily because the VOICE (w/TEXT option) would be $60 of that. All Xfinity Voice doesn't include PC TEXT but *offers generally do. I need the TEXT because I don't speak well. I moved that voice to ATT to retain TEXT, returned CableCARD and kept Internet only. At an Xfinity Service Center (a 12 X 20 facility maybe) in zip code 25401 I asked regarding DATA LIMITS, one person told me 1TB and the associate next to her said not to be concerned because they'll likely waive a couple months of excess (I OF COURSE KNEW BETTER BEFORE WALKING IN THE DOOR) There ain't no DATA CAP in my vicinity! I returned CableCard and decided to try L3TV streaming because there is 1TB (internal storage) and I was interested in comparing PQ. My 13 months of L3TV/T-Vision was an 'experience'. I needed to either sell off all TiVo hardware & rely on 100% streaming with either T-Vision or others.

    Out of curiosity I inquired 'ON LINE' using CHAT regarding TV, phone & Internet mentioning CableCard. I was presented with an interesting package. Not wanting to deal with the 12 X 20 Service Center and having a previous good experience I drove to a 'RETAIL STORE' (40 miles each way). The person I had dealt with previously wasn't in so I just took what I was dealt! I showed him the 'package' that had been offered in the CHAT and he mentioned "I can do better I believe"!

    At this same time it had been mentioned here VOD was going away - I have Roku (ULTRA w/optical audio) so VOD wasn't going to be an issue. A package I was offered 'in store' w/voice, XG1V4, CableCard and same Internet was a few $$ less than the CHAT offer.

    Every Comcast/Xfinity 'RATE CHART' is different with mine having 40 'foot notes' - there's no combination on my 'RATE CHART' that exactly matches my 2 year agreement.

    What will change and 'WHEN' - Who the HE!! knows .........

    WORD COUNT ain't quite that of @NashGuy but that's 'my story'!

    @NashGuy said a friend spent an 'hour' on the phone. Being as knowledgeable a guy as he claims I'd have thought he might have offered better advice before even asking here.

    If I were looking for Xfinity offers I might try using an Internet Connection of someone else (NOT Xfinity) and using a 'known address w/no Xfinity service now' and inquire offers. That could be interesting! Got a friend with a dish and DSL?

    I understand changes! In 24 months (I doubt sooner) I may well be 'shopping' again. Long term QAM - I hope it's around for a 'long while'. An Xfinity distribution guy here that's been here even before Adelphia mentions that all 'local' hardware appears to be able to support QAM for a long while. Will it? Rural WV - I hope so!!
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2019
  6. Sep 7, 2019 #326 of 355
    Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

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    Exactly. "Soon" in Comcast parlance could be full IPTV conversion of some markets in the early- to mid- 2020s. It's Comcast. IPTV *WILL* happen, and anyone who thinks it won't is in denial. How many years it takes to get there who knows. We could even see a scenario where the Chicago market is phased, and later markets are more of a hard cut-over like they did for MPEG-4.

    This is probably the truth. They haven't uniformly upgraded to 1ghz plants (860mhz rebuilds from the past decade are, AFAIK, all 1ghz equipment that hasn't been tuned/tested/sloped/balanced/whatever above 860mhz).

    Their national video delivery network today is all IP fiber, with the C-band downlinks happening in Denver. Channels are slotted onto QAM at each headend, so the technology is there at a national level to operate markets differently with the same national IP feed. They will have to eventually switch the reception from C-band to fiber as well as 5G will take over the C-band, and they might even become the or one of the fiber carriers that replaces the C-band system to provide other MVPDs with channels nationwide.
     
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  7. Sep 7, 2019 #327 of 355
    Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

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    1. That's completely bizarre and a prime example of Comcast's discoordination.
    2. If you need text, you could just use your mobile phone for that.

    Their rate card is completely NUTS. This is what a rate card SHOULD look like (they have overbuilt the majority of Comcast- Groton):

    Bundles and Pricing | Thames Valley Communications

    Note the 16 position chart that shows TV and internet bundles. Add phone for $20 to ANY bundle. None of this crap that Comcast does where you can get this with this bundle but not that one, and this bundle includes this but not that and you end up with a bunch of extra crap bundled in. Also of note is how they still offer around 70 analog channels plus gigabit internet on a 1ghz fiber-deep system that predated the term "fiber deep" by a decade or so.

    Analog on Comcast was around for a long time. Until it wasn't.
     
  8. Sep 7, 2019 #328 of 355
    gary.buhrmaster

    gary.buhrmaster Active Member

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    Just because the hardware is capable says nothing about what will be, or the when it will be it. While the transcoders can output MPEG2 transport streams (used with QAM), any recent device can also be set to output in any of the IPTV formats such as HLS/HDS/DASH, etc. with a simple config file change (sometimes with a firmware or license upgrade depending on vendor). And for that matter, while a new transcoder is not exactly cheap for someone like me (or likely you), it is pocket change for someone like Comcast should they wish to transition.
     
  9. Sep 7, 2019 #329 of 355
    WVZR1

    WVZR1 Active Member

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    TEXT from a PC has tremendous advantages used in my situation!. The package that adds TEXT after an *offer has many more inclusions that I just didn't need.

    My 13 months of L3TV/T-Vision prepared me for the challenges of streaming. My package from T-Vision with 1TB HDD storage, TVE and all of the other incidentals wasn't terribly priced. Cheaper than either of the Dish services. * NO CONTRACT and PQ better than either. No PCM/Dolby audio issues either. The maybe most irritating Xfinty nuisance is the 'local' ads they insert and the damn BROADCAST ALERTS.

    Everything's around until it AIN'T!!! Me and you included!
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2019
  10. Sep 7, 2019 #330 of 355
    slowbiscuit

    slowbiscuit FUBAR

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    Well yeah, but the vibe you get from some here is that QAM is going away in the next couple of years, and all you and I are saying is who the hell knows. It's Comcast, you can't predict when. All you can do is WAG it.
     
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  11. Sep 7, 2019 #331 of 355
    Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

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    What the heck are you talking about? Comcast's whole network already *IS* IPTV except for the last few miles from the headend to the main XG1/XG2 in the house, where they go back to IPTV if they are watched on another TV with an Xi3 or similar devices. Those exact same streams that are already encoded can be transmitted via IPTV all the way to the consuming device.

    That's irrelevant. Why do you go through Comcast? Android, iOS, and Google Voice all have that functionality, it's not like Comcast has anything unique here.
     
  12. Sep 7, 2019 #332 of 355
    WVZR1

    WVZR1 Active Member

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    My choice and regardless of your 'thoughts' with the area code and exchange that I've had for 35+ years won't go everywhere! You don't have to understand - IT'S CHOICE!

    BTW - I did check the TVC 'rate card' all of it! No where do they mention CableCARD so I'd say my 'in person conversation' is a reasonable approach regardless. I don't believe I overlooked it but if I did I'm quite sure you'll point that out!!!

    Haven't seen you 'rant' PQ recently!!!!
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2019
  13. Sep 8, 2019 #333 of 355
    gary.buhrmaster

    gary.buhrmaster Active Member

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    I was responding to the individual stating that their local engineer was stating that their local franchise encoders do TS for eventual conversion to QAM, and I was pointing out that it can do more than that. Pay attention to the thread.
     
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  14. Sep 8, 2019 #334 of 355
    WVZR1

    WVZR1 Active Member

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    When the time comes, I'll survive IPTV transition I'd think!

    I've had C-Band, then very early Dish(EchoStar), to get very early HD I had a 'broker' in Canada and did 'Bell ExpressVu'. I had HD here in rural WV before Adelphia even offered it. It was also 'inexpensive' in comparison. The $$$ exchange worked. Bell did an offer to upgrade to more recent receivers and I couldn't meet 'residency' qualification requirements so I needed to transition back to domestic US stuff. Being rural Internet was very interesting also, DialUp, DirecPC, ADSL and 'THEN' Adelphia cable ......

    There's very likely much to change .. I did 13 months of L3TV and the option to return is certainly a consideration. Xfinity/TiVo w/CableCARD until.................?
     
  15. Sep 8, 2019 #335 of 355
    Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

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    It's just a bizarre and illogical "choice" if text is what you need- that's what cell phones are for. You could also port your number to Google Voice or a cell phone.

    They're $5/mo. I don't know if they're on the website anymore, because they probably only have a handful of them. I had a CableCard when I was with them, it's a bit of a bizarre experience because with a Premiere XL4 or newer, you lose a few analog channels that aren't available in digital or HD. A TiVo Premiere would be able to grab everything. When I had the Premiere XL4 on their service, I had a splitter to get analog through my TV for when games would move to ESPNews.

    Right now I don't have an MVPD or vMVPD, but I think I'll get YouTube TV for the 2020 supercycle plus Connecticut is moving into the New Big East, so I'm kind of excited about that!

    It's still trash. Hasn't changed much. They can only do so much no matter how much raw HP they throw at a 3.8mbps MPEG-4 HD channel.

    That doesn't even make sense since Comcast doesn't encode anything except maybe local access on each system. National channels are encoded in Denver and sent out via IP-fiber, local channels (except for Chicago) are encoded by the stations, and the entire stat-muxed packaged is sent to Comcast in MPEG-2, regional sports channels may either be done regionally (i.e. Chelmsford for New England) or in Denver, so the only thing encoded on an individual system would be local access.

    All the local systems do is dump the already encoded MPEG-4 stream from IP-fiber into QAM "slots" with 9 or 10 "slots" per physical QAM channel.

    Other than Comcast's horrible VQ, I wouldn't worry about it too much. I certainly wouldn't buy a new TiVo FOR cable, but as long as your existing one works you can use it. They'll tell you when you need to upgrade to IPTV.
     
  16. Sep 9, 2019 #336 of 355
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Please point out which intelligent posts you've made here. Go away, troll.
     
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  17. Sep 9, 2019 #337 of 355
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Is Comcast still offering analog cable TV service there in CT? I thought they'd gone all-digital MPEG-4 (with MPEG-2 locals) pretty much systemwide by now.

    At any rate, none of the hypothetical timelines I've talked about necessarily meant that those changes would happen across the *entire* Comcast footprint at those times. I'm talking about when those changes might be introduced on a widespread basis, almost certainly in the Central Division first. Chicago, Nashville, Atlanta, etc. are the markets to keep an eye on.

    Yeah, for Cox it's not mainly about the bandwidth, thanks to SDV. In a few years, it'll be about getting out of running their own TV service and turning it over to a partner vMVPD (which could run on the Cox IP network as managed IPTV). But at that point, of course, it won't make any sense to devote any (or much) bandwidth for QAM TV, other than perhaps Starter TV. (I don't expect any vMVPD to offer locals-only packages for all those markets across the nation, so QAM-only Starter TV might be the only option for Cox customers who only want local channels.)

    As for Cox turning the keys over to Comcast -- let's say that Comcast does launch a nationwide vMVPD. Why couldn't they strike a deal with Cox for Cox to sell that service under the existing Contour TV brand? The vMVPD packages would just become the new set of Contour TV packages. It could be linked into Cox's IP network as "managed IPTV" with support for multicasting for customers with the right CPE. Since it wouldn't be OTT, the data could be zero-rated against broadband. Cox could still make the service exclusive to those who bundle it with broadband. For standalone TV subs, they could still offer Starter TV, with those few locals (plus C-SPAN and shopping channels) being the only stuff left on QAM.

    Gracias.
     
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  18. Sep 9, 2019 #338 of 355
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Well, I'd just say that IPTV (whether it's OTT or managed) offers flexibilities that traditional TV (QAM, DBS) does not. For the operator, there's the ability to integrate more lucrative targeted ads into the live linear channel stream. Hulu with Live TV and AT&T TV can do this already (and, I think, do). They can do the same with IP-based cloud DVR and VOD too. So as Comcast's competitors move into that world, it's an incentive for them to follow and not be left behind.

    What flexibilities does IPTV offer for consumers? Well, a live linear channel can change on-the-fly from HD SDR to 4K HDR to match the native format of the show you're watching. That'll be a nice feature for live sports. And IPTV also offers the potential for interactivity that traditional TV doesn't. Yes, some of that can still be done by using an IP-overlay or side-banner with an underlying QAM video stream, but I imagine that the capabilities are greater when the whole thing is IP-based. For instance, the content provider could embed metadata within their IP video stream. Click on an actor to learn more about him. Or click on an item in the frame to see an ad for it and learn where to buy it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2019
  19. Sep 9, 2019 #339 of 355
    Bigg

    Bigg Cord Cutter

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    No, analog has been gone for ~6 years. AFAIK, the last analog system running in CT is TVC in Groton, and my guess is they will run analog until they exit the TV business. I was referring to Comcast's analog lineup of 70 channels. That lineup could be used for QAM, and all the other crap moved to IPTV.

    My guess is that they get out of the business entirely. If Comcast is running their IPTV system, it would be easy to cook up a locals-only IPTV package to meet franchise requirements.

    Yeah, that would be logical, since their CPE already runs X1 and has roughly the same capabilities as native Comcast CPE.

    I would think that if they could get the timing to sync up properly, they could do local IP ad injection over QAM today. The boxes would download ads ahead of time for a certain customer so that they didn't all try to stream at the same time.

    That type of stuff should be able to be done today as an overlay on top of QAM, but in general, yes, you can do more with IPTV when everything is just bits and bytes.
     
  20. Sep 9, 2019 #340 of 355
    NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

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    Just comes down to business/contractual considerations. If Comcast has a nationwide vMVPD in which the packages are negotiated as nationwide standard sets of channels (including locals), and there's no locals-only package on the platform (keep in mind that Disney doesn't like the idea of a package without ESPN and Fox doesn't like a package without Fox News, etc.), then does Comcast bother with going back and creating locals-only packages for their white-label MSO redistribution partners like Cox in this hypothetical scenario? I kinda don't think so. If I'm Comcast, I want to keep things as simple and streamlined as possible. "Here are our channel packages. Here are the prices. Here's how much we'll give you for every subscriber you bring to us. You're welcome to sweeten the deal for your customers with a bundling discount or special perks (like a free Xi6 custom streaming box). We're willing to hook into your IP network so that you can offer our vMVPD as managed IPTV. That's the deal, take it or leave it."

    Same way I can't see YouTube TV negotiating a locals-only package for Verizon to distribute to their FiOS customers in the NYC area. Wouldn't Google just say, "Uh, if you want/need to still offer that kind of channel package, you'll need to do it on your own FiOS TV platform. That's just not part of what we do at YouTube TV."

    That sounds like a big ol' mess. DirecTV does that kind of thing, to an extent, on DVR recordings, but not on live TV. Just way easier to do all that ad-injection server-side when everything is IP. The ads could even be placed via real-time data-enabled auction platforms.
     

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