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I wonder if disabling that will prevent those commercials to be on your harddrive, I doubt it will be live streaming the ads as not all have true broadband speeds.
Entirely possible, depending on how they implemented it, but it's not crazy to think that it might stream and ads and just skip the ad for the few people who don't have decent broadband speeds. It could also revert to streaming if you turn that off, although that sounds too sophisticated for TiVo's M.O.
 

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The ads should have been downloaded ahead of time. I certainly hope they arent doing it in realtime.
I don't see much reason why they couldn't do it in realtime. YouTube and Hulu do it. I'd agree that the probably are pre-downloading. All we really need is someone with TE4 who is getting these ads to go into their router and see if their TiVo uses a bunch of bandwidth when they go to start up a show.
 

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If you look at the video, and the blue spinning circle at the start of the pre-roll ad, and then combine that with reports that skipping past the ad is sluggish (not like regular SkipMode ad skipping), all that indicates to me that TiVo is live-streaming the pre-roll ad.
If they haven't already, someone with TE4 will watch their router's traffic monitor and see. But it sounds like streaming.
 

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Attributed to Zatz that I saw on DSLReports:

I saw Dave Zatz posted that this weekend on Facebook and Twitter. Also if you try to block the ad servers on your home network, it hangs indefinitely waiting to load a pre-roll add that will never load.
What if you cut it off completely, and only manually update guide data, or only let it update in the off hours when you don't use it? Does this mean that if Comcast (or whoever your ISP is) flakes out you can't watch recordings on your TiVo?
 
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I could see TiVo offering the same "feature" to MSO's, though, to allow them to insert their own ads. The ad catalog would be the MSO's, but TiVo would still get their taste.
Or TiVo does the ads and the MSO gets a cut of the action.
 

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Seems like Tivo should ping the customers's Tivo before enabling the pre-roll ad feature to ensure the ping time does not exceed the latency threshold to stream the ad.
It's not latency though. This would work fine on satellite internet, since the modern satellite systems have 25mbps, even though they have crazy high pings. Not that you'd want to burn up your bandwidth on TiVo ads, but it would work if you really, really want an OTA DVR. It might not work on a very slow DSL connection, even though pings are relatively low, since the bandwidth is so small.

This is an edge case either way, since it would only happen to rural users with OTA reception but no cable available and an OTA TiVo, but it's still an edge case that someone will run into.
 
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What we need is a thread to just dealing with the problem, what to do, who to call vs a complaint thread. Just a thought.
But then it wouldn't be TCF if we had threads that actually had a single topic and stuck to it!!
 

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The only customers that have any recourse are the retail customers and retail customers are such a small percentage of their business. The revenue potential must be significant for Tivo to push something like this that they know most customers would instinctively decline.
I'm sure they're making some money off of it, but I'd have to think there's a grander plan to partner with MSOs and/or integrate ads into their future streaming service.
 

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I'll take Ted's explanation of TiVO needing ads to make the low-volume retail channel viable over the above TCF conspiracy theory. With TiVO splitting into two companies in 2020 the hardware side needs to start making money since the patent/litigation side won't be around to subsidize it anymore.
So I'm wondering how many TiVos are actually sold truly at retail? I believe the retail number also includes CI's who install them for clients. I'm wondering if they figure that the retail market is even smaller than it appears. Otherwise, the whole EDGE and the ads kind of make no sense. The Series 1 and several series after that were truly targeted at enthusiasts who wanted a TiVo for themselves, but now that MSOs are the largest clients, I'm thinking that CIs might be the target market even for the "retail" product.

My sense is that the enthusiasts have cut the cord in large numbers, and the ones who haven't are largely on DirecTV, while many of the ones remaining on cable have gone to MSO-supplied DVRs like X1 that are definitely not as good as TiVo, but aren't nearly as bad as previous generations of non-networked 2-tuner DVRs with 80-160GB hard drives. Further, some of the techies who used to use or have TiVos and have nice HT setups today only have pay TV for the SAF/WAF, or as part of a bundle, and don't use it themselves. What's left of TiVo's market is really, really small, and OTA alone can't support them, since OTA users are too cost conscious, and they are now competing with Amazon, which doesn't need to make money off of their far less capable, but also far cheaper DVR, as well as Tablo that does need to make money, but is focused only on OTA retail and working with streaming devices.
 

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I'm glad I kept TE3. It works fine, and I see no reason to give up the same basic interface I've used since I've had an S2.
 

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Oh, nice! They have upgraded it since the last time I looked! So they can provide the hardware, 60 hours of cloud storage, accurate guide data, AND on-demand access for $5 less per month than Tivo AND have no pre-roll ads. I realize that Comcast doesn't need to make as much money on their DVR service, but still, tell me again how Tivo provides me less for more and still needs to get a few dollars more per year out of ads that make the Tivo experience worse?
Different company, different business model. Comcast has scale, and their primary profit driver is broadband, not the TV portion of things. They probably make some money on the VOD, premiums, box rentals, etc, but they are at best scraping out a thin margin on their TV packages.

TiVo lovers like to hate on X1 and I'm sure they have valid points in terms of its day-to-day use. But in the bit of time that I played around with it, after setting up a friend's box, I thought that the UI looked really slick and integrated on-demand very nicely. And the voice input worked really fast and accurately. Still though, you're not going to be able to store nearly as much as with a TiVo, or have the kind of power-user features that many TiVo users enjoy. Trade-offs...
X1 is "good enough" for the masses, but it's certainly no TiVo. Most of the X1 boxes (excluding the XG1v4 on Comcast, Cox does't have it yet AFAIK) are slow and clunky in comparison to TiVo, and all X1 boxes have a clunkier UI than TiVo, with more menus to click through, and fewer features. They also don't have 2-3TB hard drives like TiVos. The X1 boxes also throw a fit when the network goes down, and they either can't play anything back or are very limited on functionality. Also, with a TiVo you can switch QAM-based providers and keep your recordings if you're lucky enough to have multiple QAM providers, or if you have certain TiVo models, switch from cable to OTA.

The two advantages X1 has are the T9-esque remote, which is pretty cool for typing without needing an app or a flip-out keyboard like TiVo, and VOD, which I believe is completely gone from TiVo on Comcast.
 

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You don't really have to flip through the menus, just use the voice feature. It's almost flawless taking you to settings and features.
A lot of people don't want to be talking to their remote, they want to use it like a normal remote.

Don't recall which model X1 my friend has (it has a hard drive but I kinda doubt it's the top-end XG1v4). At any rate, the UI felt faster and more fluid than the Roamio OTA I had at the time. And the X1 UI design looked, well, like something that was designed in the past few years while the old TE3 UI looked like something from a decade ago.
The v4 is pretty obvious since it's got the angular design versus the more "traditional" XG1 design with the curves. I've used an XG1v1 alongside a Roamio OTA and the Roamio OTA (on TE3) is a far better device.

Of the advantages you cite for TiVo over X1, about the only thing that would have much appeal or make any difference to the vast majority of cable TV subscribers is the larger hard drive. Everyone likes having the option of recording tons of stuff and not worrying about space, if even they don't really need the space.
Yeah, X1 is "good enough" for the majority of people, even though they would clearly see the difference if they had a TiVo for a while. It's unfortunate that the large MSOs are too pig-headed and stubborn to use the best device out there like smaller MSOs have and instead re-invented the wheel. Even 500GB is probably enough for most people, especially now that many locals are channels sharing, and some markets have been converted to MPEG-4 for locals, which brings them down to a blurry, 720p mess that only requires about 2GB/hour.

And while there are TiVo-lovers who would see the X1 as just "good enough," my guess is that if you let all X1 users spend a few days using a TiVo with the Hydra UI, a whole lot of them, maybe even the majority, would choose to stick with X1 even if it didn't cost them any more to use the TiVo. While TiVo definitely has more options for power users, I always found its UI back on TE3 to have off-putting oddities relative to every other DVR I'd ever used. (The worst was pressing the Zoom button on the remote to exit from TiVo Central back to live TV. Completely unintuitive.)
TE3 is about as perfect as you can make a DVR interface. It's really an incredible piece of software, and is very mature. It just works. It just makes sense. It's 100% user intuitive, which cannot be said for almost any other piece of consumer electronics (iOS was at some point, but IMO, no longer is). I haven't used the Zoom button since I had a TiVo on cable, I don't find a need for it. I just use Live TV.
 
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I think it's kind of one of those "Mac vs. Windows" things, where people who start with one platform find at least some of the user conventions on the other platform to be non-intuitive. In this instance, we're talking about "TiVo vs. all other DVRs in the world." I had used 4 or 5 different DVR systems before coming to TiVo and found that there was very little learning curve in moving between any of those. And then I got a TiVo Roamio OTA and, frankly, found a lot of its UI/UX choices to be strange and frustrating. Some of that probably has to do with TiVo offering more options/features for power-users; it's always a challenge to offer such features without making the UI needlessly complex for the majority of users who will never want to use them. Still, though, some of the choices were just inexplicable to me, like not having an Exit button on the remote (which, I would note, TiVo has added to their peanut remote for the Next Gen IPTV platform because, frankly, everyone expects to have an Exit button except folks who have been using TiVos since 1999). I kept getting the angry gong sound all the time when I began using a TiVo.

So I have to strongly disagree with you about TiVo being "100% user intuitive". There are nice things about the UI/OS, don't get me wrong, but I feel like it's one of those things with cult appeal -- and pretty overrated by members of the cult.
I use both Mac and Windows. Each have their ups and downs. But TiVo and X1 is nothing of the sort. TiVo just far superior to X1. X1 is built by Comcast, for Comcast (and others MSOs with similar business models), to promote their content and interests, not to serve the consumer. It's good enough that most tolerate it.

I have all the TiVo sounds turned off, and why would you need an "Exit" button? Live TV is the sort of default that the thing is spitting out 24/7. What are you even exiting TO? It doesn't even make any sense in the paradigm of a DVR. I've only been using TiVo since 2004, and I can't figure out why the hell you would have an "Exit" button on a DVR? There's Back, TiVo, Live TV, but why Exit?

Now, I'm not saying that there aren't improvements they could make, like, oh, user profiles, or better HD/SD recording options on OnePass, or a plethora of other things, but what I AM saying is that no other DVR has come close to the UI/UX of a TiVo, and very, very few consumer electronics devices are 100% user intuitive like a TiVo. TE3 is fundamentally the same UI that they've been using since 1999, but they fixed many of the weird or illogical quirks that it's had over the years, and today's TE3 is a very mature, refined interface for a DVR.
 
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But it's still very ugly and antiquated looking.
I suppose aesthetics is subjective, but that's an extremely harsh assessment of TE3, and I would vehemently disagree. I don't find it to waste space on my 65" Samsung UHDTV, I find it offers just what I need and doesn't clutter the screen up with useless crap.
 

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Because sometimes when you're playing a recording, or you're watching live TV but you're behind the timeline, you go into the TiVo menu system for some reason. And then you want to exit out of that back to what you were watching. Pressing Live TV will dump you out of a recording into, uh, live TV. And if you were already watching live TV but were behind the timeline, doesn't it jump you up to present time?
Yeah, Live TV sends you back to live. If I want to go back to something that's on live, I record it, so that I can go back to the recording. I have the live window on TiVo Central turned off, I just find it annoying on OTA, so I don't have something to Zoom in and out of. It was OK on cable, as I'd put CNN or MSNBC or something up there that was just sort of background.

Again, TiVo has finally relented and followed suit with virtually every other DVR in existence by putting an Exit button on their Android TV/IPTV remotes. "Live TV" and "Exit" are not the same thing, as evidenced by the fact that lots of DVR remotes have both buttons.
I don't see the point. I love TiVo, but let's be real, since they rolled out the Haxe re-write with DTA back in late 2013, nothing significant has changed or improved in TiVo's software, and that's a good thing (other than not having user profiles GRRRR). There's really nothing that can or should be changed in the current TE3 software, which hasn't really changed since 2013. The hardware, while much faster on paper, hasn't really gained functionality since the Premiere, other than various HDD and tuner configurations, and a few lucky ducks on FiOS who can get 4k with the Bolt.

Which is why TiVo, after a lot of market research, decided to dump TE3 and go with a heavily revamped TE4. Got it.
They probably wanted something fancy to show off to investors and MSOs, even though for users, TE3 is excellent, and there is no need to change much of anything, other than adding new features (I'm looking at you, user profiles).

I spent over an hour this week messing with TE3, on my last lifetime Premiere that I dusted off. Ooof!! I could not stand messing with that UI. It is just terrible in functionality and aesthetics when compared to TE4. Just about everything I messed with is better or much easier to do in TE4.
I've never had a TE4 box, I see no need for it, but how can TE3 possibly be bad? It does exactly what a DVR should, with no fuss, with a very easy to use interface. Everything just makes sense. It's like the iPhone 8+, a refined and finely tuned version of the last of it's type.
 

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Well compared to the SDUI TE3 is better. But TE4 does most things better. And also presents things on screen better.

Of course it's all subjective. But personally I really hated using the TE3 UI after I started using the TE4 UI.
I just don't fine TE3 lacking anything. It's everything a DVR should be. It's basically a refined HD version of the SDUI, which has been great for two decades.
 

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It's 2019. Relevant technology doesn't have a UI that looks like TE3.

As refined as TE3 may be, I think TiVo would have an even bigger problem selling new units if they didn't have a UI that was in the same league as most of the other modern DVRs.
Disagree. TE3 is excellent.
 

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Pressing the TiVo button won't get you out of TiVo Central (or whatever they call the main TiVo home screen UI) -- in fact, that button takes you there!

Every other DVR has a button, usually named Exit, that takes you out of whatever on-screen menu system or app that you're in, back out to whatever was playing before you entered that menu system or app -- either live TV or a DVR recording. There's no equivalent button on a TiVo.
Left will take you out of whatever you're in. I'm still not sure why TiVo would need an "Exit" button, as it has a "Live TV" button, and the TiVo button.
 
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Look, you know you're on the wrong side of a UI/UX debate when *literally* no other system has implemented the conventions that you're arguing for. If TiVo's approach made sense, it would have been copied by other DVRs, *especially* given the fact that TiVo was the original DVR system. Heck, even the Mac eventually gave up on insisting on a one-button mouse after Windows had been around for a decade...
I disagree.The point you are missing here is that TiVo is a DVR first, a cable box second, and everything else (streaming, VOD) third. Everything is DVR-centric. Older Motorola and Scientific Atlanta DVRs were cable boxes first and DVRs second, since they were leased out by MSOs. Comcast's X1 tries to equally be everything, cable box, DVR, VOD, streaming, etc. Therefore, it makes sense for TiVo, and for any true DVR-centric device, to have a DVR-centric interface, hence TiVo Central as the centerpiece of the box, with Live TV as a secondary part of the UX.
 

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Nice dodge but you failed to address the specific scenarios I brought up. And while you can choose to think of TiVo Central as "the centerpiece of the box," no one uses a TiVo or any other DVR so that they can while away the hours hanging out in the menu system. The actual content they want to watch -- live and recorded TV -- is the reason a DVR exists and that's the main place that users spend their time.
That's not a dodge at all. It's about what TiVo fundamentally IS. TiVo fundamentally IS a DVR, hence it makes perfect sense to have the TiVo button bring you back to TiVo Central. It can pause Live TV, but that's not what it's meant to do. It's meant to have recordings scheduled in advance, and then play them back. If you're planning on watching a live event, you schedule it to record as well, both for the menu functionality, as well as having a full game/event length buffer as well as blocking a tuner out in a busy tuner environment (at least back in the day when tuners were busy). TiVo Central is the launch point for recordings and scheduling recordings, and therefore it's the logical center point of the TiVo Experience.
 
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