Two way communications

Discussion in 'TiVo Series3 HDTV DVRs' started by DrWho453, Jul 26, 2007.

  1. DrWho453

    DrWho453 New Member

    Jul 16, 2005
    Raleigh NC


    I have a question. As it stands the tivo 3 can only do a one way communication with the cable card so you can't do a PPV or VOD. I am pretty sure a good number of series 3 units are attached to a home network. My question is why couldn't tivo and the cable company have something where when you select watch a PPV or VOD, it would send the signal over the network to the cable company to activate the channel and then the cable company sends the activation code down the line to the box to activate it. Of course I am sure the Cable companies would not want to do this.

    I know there would be some logistics that would have to be worked out but since you have tell Tivo which cable company you are using and the zip code, that could ensure that the Tivo would send the data to the correct Cable company server to activate the card and they could probably work something out that would inform the server which house is asking for the information so that it activates the correct device.

    Of course it would be better if they could do two-way over the cable since everyone would be able to take advantage of it. I would think that using the network would be a great idea even though there will be people who don't have a network and probably would not be able to take advantage of it but it would be better then nothing.
  2. sfhub

    sfhub Well-Known Member

    Jan 6, 2007
    There's no real reason it couldn't be done, but it would require both parties (or N parties) to cooperate, be motivated to implement the feature, test the feature, and deploy the feature. That is asking a lot.
  3. Ripcord2

    Ripcord2 New Member

    Jun 6, 2004
    There's not really a big incentive for the cable companies to do this (especially when they want you to rent THEIR equipment). Pretty much the only reason we have HD on Tivos (or most non-cable-co-provided-hardware) and Cablecards is because of an FCC mandate.

    That said, the two-way thing is largely a technical issue. When Cablecards were first released the technology hadn't really been built to allow it to support two-way communications. Cablecard 2.0 specifications (which isn't so much the card itself as the entire system involving the card) do allow two-way, but no Tivo hardware support it (perhaps the HD does) and very few vendors do.

    I expect it to happen eventually... As long as the cable co's are being forced to allow you to use your own equipment, they'd like you to spend money on things like pay-per-view =)
  4. classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

    Feb 18, 2004
    Ontario Canada.
    i: Security.
    Cable doesn't want their messaging outside of a closed box (read: the internet, or even in ones home network) , apart from on the cable from the hos box itself.

    2: Software interface standards. Whomever would have to develop for each STB or each cable provider, or at least every two-way management system.
  5. Stanley Rohner

    Stanley Rohner New Member

    Jan 18, 2004


    1. It won't happen because cable companies suck.

    2. Umm, Umm, I guess the first answer pretty much sums it up.
  6. GoHokies!

    GoHokies! O2->CO2 Converter

    Sep 21, 2005
    Thanks for that high-powered analysis. Actually, if you do a little reading around here, you'll find that is wrong.

    Check out the SDV threads that are hanging out on the first page here, MZ has posted a number of links to sources on both sides of the fence that say that the 2 way communications to enable SDV are being worked on and progress is being made. If they get this working for SDV, it's in the cable companies best interest to make it so that PPV and VOD are available as well, so I expect that we will actually see a solution to this problem.
  7. ZeoTiVo

    ZeoTiVo I can't explain

    Jan 2, 2004
    it is asking a lot but since cable cards are now out and the TiVo HD and S3 are out there the cable companies will soon have to face the fact that a significant enough amount of 3rd party digital devices will be hung on their cable system.

    Trying to SDV with premium channels will be bad business as showtime would not be happy to hear that anyone does not have access that wants it. Trying SDV with HD channels that have clout will result in the same. Local franchise authorities may step in over such things as putting spanish channels on SDV, etc..

    At some point the cable companies will see a drop in PPV sales or VOD draw as 3rd party devices can not access them. The CEA is making a good case to the FCC that the current cable card setup is not meeting the goals of their mandate.

    At some point the cable companies might wake up and realize the waiver by Sat broadcasters might be the cable company advantage. Get the cable cards working bi-directionally in a way that CE companies can keep making inexpensive but feature rich access devices that are on retail shelves for the average consumer to buy. Make them a cable customer for the life of that equipment even if they move or get some good offer from sat company. Make 3rd party devices a tool to retain cable subscribers

    How wonderfully ironic if this came to pass and the cable companies fought the sat companies trying to get in on the standard :p
  8. pmiranda

    pmiranda Member

    Feb 12, 2003
    Austin, TX
    I think we just need a "SDV/VOD/PPV 2-way FAQ" sticky thread so we don't get 10 new threads a day from all the TiVoHD newbies that ignored the problems S3 users have been having for a year since it "cost too much".

    (No malice to the OP, this thread chosen at random for my remark.)

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