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Sorry for the delay in joining the conversation. I came back from CEDIA with a nasty case of food poisoning that ended up with me in the ER on a drip line for dehydration. No fun.

As you have noticed, we have started to rollout DVR pre-roll ads. This is part of a broader initiative to modernize TiVo's consumer business model.

The ads are served dynamically when playback starts at the beginning of a recording playback. Recordings from certain ad-free networks will not get pre-roll ads and resuming playback on a recording also does not get an ad. Lastly since these are dynamic ads, there are times when ad slots are not purchased in which case ad may not see an ad playback. To ensure the experience remains consistent these ads are skippable using the same buttons you would use for ad-skip (Chan Up, D, SKIP and FF). As part of our commitment to improve the experience, we are measuring each step in the process and will be continually optimizing the ads to reduce latency and improve performance.

We are also investing to bring more content to TiVo users. Our soon to be launched TiVo+ video service will include dozens of channels of free entertainment. We have assembled an amazing set of partners as part of this service and will be evolving it in the coming months with many more channels, on-demand movies and shows and other exciting specialty content coming as well.
First, welcome back here, Ted, and, most importantly, I hope that you are doing ok and only feel better! Food poisoning is no fun (I had a mild case last evening as well). Take care of yourself, please. Too much CEDIA partying? ;)

2 questions, if you might be able to respond: 1. Can a customer opt out of the pre-roll ads, as the TiVo customer service reps. have been saying and processing the past couple of days? 2. Is pre-roll also coming to TE3?

I'll also sneak in a third question: you may have noticed, the pre-roll transitioning can seem a bit rough--will that be smoothed out? From one of your latter points, presumably, yes?
 

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A little recap...

  • Tivo via an open case stated I could opt-out of the pre-roll ads by calling in and having my account updated - since I haven't been hit with them yet I can't say for sure.
  • Hasn't everyone who has experienced ads been on the same/newer release?
  • Has someone with a Roamio experienced the ads? I only remember Bolts.
  • Has someone with ads disconnected the TiVo from the Internet to see what happens? Checking how gracefully it handles them being unavailable - similar to blocking access via pi-hole or some such.
  • If you have AutoSkip active does it jump beyond the ad? Right now with AudoSkip my recordings jump over the one minute buffer right into the show.
  • Has anyone with ads found out which servers are being used?
 

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Sorry for the delay in joining the conversation. I came back from CEDIA with a nasty case of food poisoning that ended up with me in the ER on a drip line for dehydration. No fun.

As you have noticed, we have started to rollout DVR pre-roll ads. This is part of a broader initiative to modernize TiVo's consumer business model.

The ads are served dynamically when playback starts at the beginning of a recording playback. Recordings from certain ad-free networks will not get pre-roll ads and resuming playback on a recording also does not get an ad. Lastly since these are dynamic ads, there are times when ad slots are not purchased in which case ad may not see an ad playback. To ensure the experience remains consistent these ads are skippable using the same buttons you would use for ad-skip (Chan Up, D, SKIP and FF). As part of our commitment to improve the experience, we are measuring each step in the process and will be continually optimizing the ads to reduce latency and improve performance.

We are also investing to bring more content to TiVo users. Our soon to be launched TiVo+ video service will include dozens of channels of free entertainment. We have assembled an amazing set of partners as part of this service and will be evolving it in the coming months with many more channels, on-demand movies and shows and other exciting specialty content coming as well.
Is there any truth to what Tivo Customer Service has told some customers regarding being able to "opt out" and that their boxes won't see the ads within 72 hours of calling? And if its true, does this simply mean the user will see a blue circle waiting for an ad that never appears (because of opting out)?

I won't bother telling you how unhappy we all are. Please pass along a big "thank you" to Weatherboy for this act of brilliant "strategery."
 

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It would seem that a TiVo response regarding Bolt and TE3 would be a 'responsible thing to do'!! If it's not coming to TE3 on Bolts maybe with the 'FALL SEASON PREMIERES' this week a person w/Bot and TE4 would rather roll back for however long even thou it removes all 'stored content'. TiVo I'd think could clarify and make decisions much easier than it's been!!

It certainly has and will I think effect the 'Word of Mouth' TiVo Experience!!!!!!
 

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All I've tried to do is originate a conversation w/TiVo through support that what you've mentioned is 'FACT' and not 'FICTION or TO BE ASSUMED'. Only a response from TiVo will answer my questions. Right now or as of the 'FEATURE ROLL-OUT' I can assume nothing! Telephone call isn't an option for me!!
It's good to confirm fact from fiction. As people have posted here, TiVo customer service reps. have told them that the customers indeed can opt out of the pre-roll ad "program" (we'll see if that actually occurs this week). Perhaps TiVo_Ted (see his recent post a bit up above) will have further info. on that.

And, as far as I am aware,* one still can sidegrade from TE4 back to TE3 (although, not on the specifically-named "Bolt OTA" model--sidegrading never has been possible on it, apparently). Perhaps TiVo_Ted also will have info. on whether pre-roll also will be coming to TE3.

* No one reporting otherwise.
 

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Sorry for the delay in joining the conversation. I came back from CEDIA with a nasty case of food poisoning that ended up with me in the ER on a drip line for dehydration. No fun.

As you have noticed, we have started to rollout DVR pre-roll ads. This is part of a broader initiative to modernize TiVo's consumer business model.

The ads are served dynamically when playback starts at the beginning of a recording playback. Recordings from certain ad-free networks will not get pre-roll ads and resuming playback on a recording also does not get an ad. Lastly since these are dynamic ads, there are times when ad slots are not purchased in which case ad may not see an ad playback. To ensure the experience remains consistent these ads are skippable using the same buttons you would use for ad-skip (Chan Up, D, SKIP and FF). As part of our commitment to improve the experience, we are measuring each step in the process and will be continually optimizing the ads to reduce latency and improve performance.

We are also investing to bring more content to TiVo users. Our soon to be launched TiVo+ video service will include dozens of channels of free entertainment. We have assembled an amazing set of partners as part of this service and will be evolving it in the coming months with many more channels, on-demand movies and shows and other exciting specialty content coming as well.
Thanks for the update Ted. Question, some people are reporting that they are able to call the 800 number to have the ads disabled on their account within 72 hours. Is this true?
 

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Probably not affect most users but I have DSL and am capped at 150GB monthly. Doing no streaming I usually use 30-60GB a month, Tivos and computers. If they start using internet to stream ads have no idea how much that would use, the prices if I go over 150GB is per GB or per 10GB and it is a LOT. There is no plan over 150GB, anything over is billed by how much you go over.
I assume (always dangerous) that the data hit would be low (I mean, people already get served ads when surfing on the Internet), but you raise a good point, especially to the degree that the ads are HD and/or data-intensive.

And, thinking more on it, it also easily could mount up, a lot, where people are watching most or many of their shows as TiVo-recorded, and watch a lot. I watch too much television, as assisted by TiVo.

Spoken here as a fellow 150GB-limited compatriot (and where I need to watch that limit on months when I've done more downloading or uploading).
 

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This is part of a broader initiative to modernize TiVo's consumer business model.
I would humbly suggest this thread focus on ad serving . . . .
(Personally, I'd love to hear more about TiVo's broader initiative to modernize its consumer business model, but I understand your concern about the whale swallowing the guppy in this thread. I'd love to see a separate thread on that topic, as we're generally only reading Internet rumors and "scoops" in the press.)
 

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From one of the news reports.......the pre-roll would occur once, when a recording first was played back, and that the pre-roll then would not recur for that show.
Sorry for the delay in joining the conversation. I came back from CEDIA with a nasty case of food poisoning that ended up with me in the ER on a drip line for dehydration. No fun.

..........
The ads are served dynamically when playback starts at the beginning of a recording playback. ........To ensure the experience remains consistent these ads are skippable using the same buttons you would use for ad-skip (Chan Up, D, SKIP and FF). ........
First, Ted, I hope you are feeling better. Food poisoning is no fun at all.

Now, there's an ambiguity here that should be addressed if we can. When you start playing a show, for the very first time, does it set some form of flag? What I am trying to get at is when you are done watching a show, where you have played it through to completion, but you don't delete it, when you next go back into the NP list, and select that show (where you get the details before you actually start PLAYING it), it appears like it hasn't been played yet (where it says "play" rather than "resume playing"). So I guess what I am trying to ask/find out is if subsequent (re)play of a show would cause an ad to get served when you first start playback on your rewatch?

Ted, as others have also asked, I would like to know if this will come to TE3 and if there are any immediate plans to force upgrade to TE4? If that were the case, this particular long-time owner with one LT Bolt would not be happy.
 

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(Personally, I'd love to hear more about TiVo's broader initiative to modernize its consumer business model, but I understand your concern about the whale swallowing the guppy in this thread.
I see it as... I'm "mad" about "X" and they will only talk about "Y"... not exactly respecting my concerns. It's still early (in the game) however at this point I think the lack of PR has had more affect than the ads themselves. I know it currently has more influence (rightfully or wrongfully) on whether I drop TiVo or not. If it was "handled" properly sure it would still raise a stink... however not to this degree.

Their "initiative" appears to be make available as many free ad based streaming channels as they can sign-up and hope you watch enough to get a decent cut. What more do you need to know? :)
 

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Thanks for the update Ted. Question, some people are reporting that they are able to call the 800 number to have the ads disabled on their account within 72 hours. Is this true?
I'll be surprised if you get an answer to this (from Tivo anyway). Why would they implement forced ads and then tell everyone how to disable them?
 

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We are also investing to bring more content to TiVo users. Our soon to be launched TiVo+ video service will include dozens of channels of free entertainment. We have assembled an amazing set of partners as part of this service and will be evolving it in the coming months with many more channels, on-demand movies and shows and other exciting specialty content coming as well.
First, sorry about the food poisoning. Seems to happen most often away from home. Hope you're better.
Can you provide an update as to the progress with a new Comcast VOD app?
 

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I imagine the effect will be even worse on a Mini. My Minis lock up almost every time they get a spinning blue circle and the only option is to pull the plug. If that happens every time I try to watch a recording from a Mini, it effectively renders recorded playback from Minis impossible for me.
Maybe pre-roll ads won't be forced on Minis, and this is really just TiVo's way to shift us all to using Minis as our primary boxes ... in preparation for rollout of a headless DVR box.
 

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Does anyone believe that TiVo will not expand pre-roll to rolling?
TiVo has marked the other commercials for skip, so they know where to insert their ads.
And 15 seconds will quickly expand to more seconds and more ads (and skip will probably skip to the next commercial).

These are just my pessimistic predictions.
 

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To ensure the experience remains consistent these ads are skippable using the same buttons you would use for ad-skip (Chan Up, D, SKIP and FF).
Does this consistency extend to the configured AutoSkip setting?

We are also investing to bring more content to TiVo users. Our soon to be launched TiVo+ video service will include dozens of channels of free entertainment. We have assembled an amazing set of partners as part of this service and will be evolving it in the coming months with many more channels, on-demand movies and shows and other exciting specialty content coming as well.
I'd have zero issue were the pre-roll ads limited to TiVo+ (or if the AutoSkip setting was honored, or if the ads were only rolled-out to new or discounted service plans).
 

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Sorry for the delay in joining the conversation. I came back from CEDIA with a nasty case of food poisoning that ended up with me in the ER on a drip line for dehydration. No fun.

As you have noticed, we have started to rollout DVR pre-roll ads. This is part of a broader initiative to modernize TiVo's consumer business model.

The ads are served dynamically when playback starts at the beginning of a recording playback. Recordings from certain ad-free networks will not get pre-roll ads and resuming playback on a recording also does not get an ad. Lastly since these are dynamic ads, there are times when ad slots are not purchased in which case ad may not see an ad playback. To ensure the experience remains consistent these ads are skippable using the same buttons you would use for ad-skip (Chan Up, D, SKIP and FF). As part of our commitment to improve the experience, we are measuring each step in the process and will be continually optimizing the ads to reduce latency and improve performance.

We are also investing to bring more content to TiVo users. Our soon to be launched TiVo+ video service will include dozens of channels of free entertainment. We have assembled an amazing set of partners as part of this service and will be evolving it in the coming months with many more channels, on-demand movies and shows and other exciting specialty content coming as well.
This, in a word, sucks.
Put the ads in the Tivo+ service, and have a second tier for ad free.
See: Hulu
 

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Isn't this similar to buying an electric bicycle, and months later being notified by the manufacturer that the first mile at the start of each ride will now REQUIRE YOU TO PEDDLE?

Seriously - easy avoidance of time consuming ads has always been one of the primary reasons that Tivo has been successful over the years! They even took it a step further with the "SKIP" functionality which was an impressive and daring step forward. These things brought me to buy my Tivo. BUT........

What in the world are they thinking by inserting their own ads? The imposition of these ads is the antithesis of what Tivo has promoted for its entire existence. I sincerely hope that smarter management people will prevail and drop these ads before the Tivo brand is too severely tarnished to survive.

I'd feel a little better if Tivo would offer to refund my lifetime subscription payment (paid within the past 90 days). If not for this rather huge investment I'd be totally inclined to rethink my Tivo decision and move toward a cord cutting solution that didn't involve Tivo. And who knows? After being aggravated continuously by these startup ads enough I may well park this Tivo and try OTA and streaming. My patience is being sorely tested!
 

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Does this consistency extend to the configured AutoSkip setting?

I'd have zero issue were the pre-roll ads limited to TiVo+ (or if the AutoSkip setting was honored, or if the ads were only rolled-out to new or discounted service plans).
I'd feel different about the pre-roll ads if TiVo stated they were using the additional income stream to provide additional core features like IPTV.
 
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