TiVo Community Forum banner
41 - 57 of 57 Posts

· Registered
Joined
·
1,976 Posts
GoHokies! said:
Comcast around here has a 20 dollar a month jump from basic to the cheapest digital package, plus $12 per month for the DVR.

So you're paying twice as much for a DVR that (according to Comcast's website) can record 10 hours of HD programming and has a 15 minute buffer for HD.

Half the product for twice the price, with a crappy interface and none of the features of Tivo to boot! Where do I sign up?

Saving 16 dollars a month, you've also paid for the THD in 18 months. Are you going to use a DVR for less than 18 months and then just go back to watching regular TV? Commit to 3 years and that 18 months becomes 15.

The THD is a no brainer for basic cable+OTA for HD if that's what you are interested in, unless you think that you are going to stop watching TV in a year and a half.
So you're saying that if you have Tivo you can drop digital cable and still get all of the channels? I'm not sure if that would work for us in any event as we have a second non-DVR HD receiver in another room that they would probably insist requires digital service.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
996 Posts
mikesown said:
If Tivo is smart, they'll do this:

1. Make the Tivo HD free with a 2 year contract
2. Reduce the subscription price to 10$ and make it the same for everyone(no multiple tivo discounts)
3. Fire unnecessary employees to make a profit(trim down the company)
...
So, you're saying sell them a box with two years service for about $240, with said box probably costing about $240, effectively giving them two years of service free. Yeah, that's a great way to make a profit!

Which employees do you deem as unnecessary? They're already having problems getting the program guide data straight for OTA PBS stations with more than one channel!
 

· Registered
Joined
·
996 Posts
jmpage2 said:
I'm sure we will see an actual tear down cost estimate on the box fairly soon and I expect it will come in somewhere around the $200-$225 range. Since they probably sell to distributors for around $240-$250 they are probably making a small profit or breaking even.

Companies don't typically pad the cost of a retail product with the costs to develop the product or do continued work on it and other products, that is a myth as these costs are simply fixed company overhead that they carry from year to year.

Tivo has salaried engineers who do this work, if on the other hand they contracted this out every so often as one time fees then maybe you'd have a point.

The real room for Tivo to do price reductions is in their subscription fees. As it is now, many people don't want to sign a multi-year contract and end up looking at the $16.95 a month (plus box cost) and compare that to the $10 a month they pay their cable provider and simply won't make the leap.

If Tivo wants larger adoption they need to reduce their subscription costs.
I'll yield to your knowledge of company finance. However, the overhead must be paid for by something. If it's not in the retail product, then it's in the monthly fees, which you recommend reducing. They're already having problems keeping the program guide data straight for PBS digital stations carrying multiple channels.

I would think that the cost of developing a particular product (ie Tivo HD, hardware and, if necessary, software) would go into the retail product, with a pad for maintenance, warranty service, etc. The monthly fee would have the cost of obtaining the program guide data, the cost of putting it in place for each of thousands of channel lineups, the cost of someone to trouble shoot problems, the cost of developing new features, etc. In other words an S1 user is either paying to develop MRV for S3/HD users (assuming its in development) or he's getting a free ride with his lifetime pass that he wants to move to his new Tivo HD.

We are all aware of the razor blade model, which won't work here. Tivo can push their costs around as much as they like, but the poster's statement that a $50 box is not unreasonable IS unreasonable.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
1,976 Posts
vstone said:
I'll yield to your knowledge of company finance. However, the overhead must be paid for by something. If it's not in the retail product, then it's in the monthly fees, which you recommend reducing. They're already having problems keeping the program guide data straight for PBS digital stations carrying multiple channels.

I would think that the cost of developing a particular product (ie Tivo HD, hardware and, if necessary, software) would go into the retail product, with a pad for maintenance, warranty service, etc. The monthly fee would have the cost of obtaining the program guide data, the cost of putting it in place for each of thousands of channel lineups, the cost of someone to trouble shoot problems, the cost of developing new features, etc. In other words an S1 user is either paying to develop MRV for S3/HD users (assuming its in development) or he's getting a free ride with his lifetime pass that he wants to move to his new Tivo HD.

We are all aware of the razor blade model, which won't work here. Tivo can push their costs around as much as they like, but the poster's statement that a $50 box is not unreasonable IS unreasonable.
How is it any more unreasonable than a cell phone carrier that gives away for free a $200 cell phone with a one year service contract?

It all comes down to how Tivo wants to position things. A free Tivo with a service contract might actually be a bigger money maker than selling the box at a small profit, IF it gets them a much larger number of subscribers.

Obviously Tivo aren't idiots, they have to realize that perceived cost of $299 for a box vs. "free" for a cable company PVR are hurting them.

How they choose to address this is up to them, but I would think it might help if they did a service bundle with the box for a year OR sold the box at a loss if the person bought a contract for 2 yrs when they bought the box.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
996 Posts
jmpage2 said:
How is it any more unreasonable than a cell phone carrier that gives away for free a $200 cell phone with a one year service contract?
...
It's not, but Tivo will have to jack up monthly fees to make it work. Will somebody who wants $50 hardware balk at higher monthly fees? Maybe, maybe not. Part of the reason we ended up with the cell phone model is that the cell companies overbuilt, and having overbuilt it wasn't like they could sell a whole lot of excess capacity. The one or two year service contract not only pays for the phone, it helps pay for the overbuilt networks. We are helping them pay for their poor planning. It probably ended up being a good thing since they have to keep giving us more minutes for the same price to keep up with competition. Unfortunately, now evryone feels like they have to talk on the phone all the time to get their money's worth.

It would be interesting to see the percentage of free phones given away vs the percentage of more capable phones.
 

· O2->CO2 Converter
Joined
·
2,702 Posts
jmpage2 said:
So you're saying that if you have Tivo you can drop digital cable and still get all of the channels? I'm not sure if that would work for us in any event as we have a second non-DVR HD receiver in another room that they would probably insist requires digital service.
No, you would just get the basic channels. But, that's all that a lot of people want, and would be forced to pay for a bunch of channels that they don't watch just to get the "free" cable company DVR.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
194 Posts
jfh3 said:
The "enourmous price difference" isn't what you might think it is, when you actually figure the true cost of a cable DVR rental, especially for those that have to upgrade to a digital package just to get a DVR.

For MANY cable customers, a Tivo HD + Tivo service will be far less expensive than a cable DVR option AND customers will have the real Tivo experience.
Let's be sure we are comparing apples to apples. The costs we should be looking at are those associated with the STB/DVR, not the costs of getting digital/HD channels, since these are the same for any STB/DVR.
My Comcast MSO charges $12.95/mo. for a STB/DVR with the same recording capacity as the TiVoHD. CC charges are 1st one free and $1.91/mo. for the second. Therefore, switching to TiVoHD would reduce my Comcast bill by approximately $10/mo. If I prepaid 3 yrs for TiVo subscription, that is a little over $8/mo. So my monthly savings is less than $2/mo. I still have to eat a $300 capital cost for the TiVo vs. "free" for a Comcast STB/DVR. To me, this is qualifies as an "enourmous price difference".
 

· Registered
Joined
·
996 Posts
GoHokies! said:
No, you would just get the basic channels. But, that's all that a lot of people want, and would be forced to pay for a bunch of channels that they don't watch just to get the "free" cable company DVR.
On most cable systems you won't have the guide data matched up to your digital channels beacuse the Tivo will only see the PSIP data as populated by the cable comapny, which usually doesn't have the channel number that corresponds to the guide data. Kinds defeats the purpose, dontcha think?

You can thank the FCC for that loophole.
 

· O2->CO2 Converter
Joined
·
2,702 Posts
vstone said:
On most cable systems you won't have the guide data matched up to your digital channels beacuse the Tivo will only see the PSIP data as populated by the cable comapny, which usually doesn't have the channel number that corresponds to the guide data. Kinds defeats the purpose, dontcha think?

You can thank the FCC for that loophole.
I'm not talking about trying to get digital cable or HD channels without subscribing to them. When I say "basic cable + OTA HD" I mean exactly that: "OTA". No cable company involved.

Wheens, what you are missing is the fact that the services are (about) the same price monthly, so the only difference is the purchase of the box. You miss the part where when you own the box, it's yours. It has value and can be sold at the end of your time with it to recoup part it's cost. You don't get that with a cable company DVR. So, you basically have to make the decision is it worth a one time outlay of $300 to make use of a much better service that will save you $2 bucks a month?
Let's be sure we are comparing apples to apples. The costs we should be looking at are those associated with the STB/DVR, not the costs of getting digital/HD channels, since these are the same for any STB/DVR.
There are lots and lots of people that have NO desire to have digital cable, but are forced to pay extra for it so that they can get a cable company DVR. In their cases there is an extreme price difference that makes it possible to get a vastly superior product for less money.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
203 Posts
Discussion Starter · #50 ·
My out of pocket expense was $850 for a lifetime S3. For the most part I am happy with it but I do get frequent pixilation on digital channels. I bought it from Costco so should I return it and get the TiVoHD? Does this makes sense financially or do I already have such a good deal that its not worth it?
 

· Registered
Joined
·
1,299 Posts
I can't be the only one completely baffled by the people in this thread claiming a $300 HD DVR with two digital tuners is "expensive". Compared to what, exactly? They just basically knocked the price down by over half, and this is "expensive"? The pricing is amazing. My only complaint is the (still) lack of Tivo2go. (And, well...lifetime, but 3 years of service isn't TOO bad, and is still cheaper than a PC based DVR.)
 

· Registered
Joined
·
1,976 Posts
Well, when compared to FREE yes some people will view $300 as expensive. I have had a cable DVR since giving up my satellite Tivo five years ago. Is it perfect? No. What does it cost me exactly though? $10 a month. The arguments about paying for digital packages, etc, are moot for me as I would be paying for those channels anyway.

For those of you who get a better deal with a basic cable package and OTA HD, that's great, I sort of doubt that it is a solution that will work for the majority of customers. I can't even put an antenna on my home due to strict homeowners covenants in my area.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
1,299 Posts
jmpage2 said:
Well, when compared to FREE yes some people will view $300 as expensive. I have had a cable DVR since giving up my satellite Tivo five years ago. Is it perfect? No. What does it cost me exactly though? $10 a month. The arguments about paying for digital packages, etc, are moot for me as I would be paying for those channels anyway.

For those of you who get a better deal with a basic cable package and OTA HD, that's great, I sort of doubt that it is a solution that will work for the majority of customers. I can't even put an antenna on my home due to strict homeowners covenants in my area.
It's far from free though. A lot of people who think they're getting it free are paying $35+ a month for it, and the cable DVRs are IMO worthless. They don't hold enough, you're not actually guaranteed to get all the new episodes, you can't transfer to your computer, etc.

If not for a fully functional DVR, I wouldn't watch broadcast TV anymore, just get everything on DVD (Netflix in other words).
 

· Registered
Joined
·
192 Posts
I started with a $250 + $250 lifetime service SAT-T60 years ago and fell in love. Then I got very frustrated with the HR10-250 and became somewhat interested in an HR20, but moved to a location with no D* line-of-sight before D* upgraded me. Today, I received the abomination TW calls their HD DVR. It is a Scientific Atlanta 8300 and it is nothing but awful.

You may say that any DVR that records shows is good enough, but 6 years of TiVo's makes that just not true. No way to flip between tuners, no 30 second skip, and a klunky UI have me ready to drop the $300 + $300 for 3 years of service TODAY (sadly my CC and BB were both out).

The economics of it aren't good. Over 3 years, I'll pay $19.11 a month (price of the unit + service + CableCard extortion) for something that they'd give me for $4.95/month. Let me tell you, the $0.50/day is WELL worth it to go back to the UI and features I've come to know and love.
 

· bUU
Joined
·
9,953 Posts
Puppy76 said:
... and the cable DVRs are IMO worthless.
There's the flaw in your logic: You're allowing your personal animosity towards cable DVRs to overwhelm rational logic. They're not worthless. They're worth something, and to many people the difference in value between them and the TiVo HD is too small to justify the price -- not everyone, but a good number of people -- maybe most.

We all love to throw a little hyperbole into the mix, now and then, but at some point we need to draw the line and acknowledge that extremes (like "worthless") are simply not relevant.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
1,976 Posts
Puppy76 said:
It's far from free though. A lot of people who think they're getting it free are paying $35+ a month for it, and the cable DVRs are IMO worthless. They don't hold enough, you're not actually guaranteed to get all the new episodes, you can't transfer to your computer, etc.

If not for a fully functional DVR, I wouldn't watch broadcast TV anymore, just get everything on DVD (Netflix in other words).
Well, like I said, I will probably buy the new HD Tivo primarily because of the Tivo interface, wonderful Tivo extras as well as the possibility of expandable storage.

However.....

I'm pretty concerned about SDV. I could care less of some really crappy stations are put on SDV, but I'm VERY concerned that many new HD channels could be put on SDV.

That's one thing I don't have to worry about with the 'crappy' cable company PVR.
 
41 - 57 of 57 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top