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Maybe Tivo should have multiple subscription tiers for OTA customers to reflect that there is a wide range of how much DVR support different OTA customers need. A customer who watches 80%+ OTA content wants a full-featured DVR. But a customer who watches less than 20% doesn't need as much.

I don't think the price of the box is as much of an issue. Tivo's hardware is rock-solid and is fine if it costs a premium over similar OTA DVRs. You can get a cheaper DVR, but you'll have to deal with more tuning issues, hangs, poor software, etc. But on the ongoing basis, I think the consumer is more price sensitive. I could see pricing like this:

$5/mo -- One tuner unlocked, 1-day guide (or none), max 5 VCR time/channel recordings, no season pass.

$10/mo -- Two tuners unlocked, 1 week guide, unlimited time/channel recordings, 3 season passes, no Tivo suggestions

$15/mo -- Full function.

This allows Tivo to gain a wide range of OTA customers. Without variable pricing, I think Tivo will lose a lot of OTA customers to the other DVRs. Their only market will be the heavy OTA watchers, and that's probably a pretty small market. But with these pricing tiers, it allows Tivo to get some revenue from customers that would have instead used a competitor.
 

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Maybe Tivo should have multiple subscription tiers for OTA customers to reflect that there is a wide range of how much DVR support different OTA customers need. A customer who watches 80%+ OTA content wants a full-featured DVR. But a customer who watches less than 20% doesn't need as much.

I don't think the price of the box is as much of an issue. Tivo's hardware is rock-solid and is fine if it costs a premium over similar OTA DVRs. You can get a cheaper DVR, but you'll have to deal with more tuning issues, hangs, poor software, etc. But on the ongoing basis, I think the consumer is more price sensitive. I could see pricing like this:

$5/mo -- One tuner unlocked, 1-day guide (or none), max 5 VCR time/channel recordings, no season pass.

$10/mo -- Two tuners unlocked, 1 week guide, unlimited time/channel recordings, 3 season passes, no Tivo suggestions

$15/mo -- Full function.

This allows Tivo to gain a wide range of OTA customers. Without variable pricing, I think Tivo will lose a lot of OTA customers to the other DVRs. Their only market will be the heavy OTA watchers, and that's probably a pretty small market. But with these pricing tiers, it allows Tivo to get some revenue from customers that would have instead used a competitor.
They can't crank out Roamios for $99 for even $199 and make money offering a $5/mo plan. I think that they should offer a product like the Roamio OTA for $399 or $499 all-in with the hardware and service similar to what Tablo does.
 

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I would try the antenna on your TV first, as that would be good indicator of the reception you would get with the bolt.
 

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I don't know about water inversion and RF signal quality but this OTA + Bolt better work or its back to ATT/Comcast or DISH. DISH is the least painful of the lt unless they have worked hard to match ATT/Comcast's poor service and quality. Maybe I'll give it all up and wean myself away from TV and watch not so cute kitten videos on youtube. I hear people love it.
As someone who cancelled DirecTV and moved to OTA + streaming on a TiVo Roamio last year, I will tell you not to expect perfect OTA reception on every channel. You may be lucky and get that but you just can't expect it. As someone above stated, try connecting whatever antenna you plan to use directly to your current TV and see what your reception is like. It will probably be about the same with the Bolt.

Even if there's one or two OTA channels that are problematic for you, you may be able to remedy that with a Hulu subscription, which gives you next-day streaming access to virtually all current shows from ABC, NBC, Fox and the CW (plus other stuff too). Of course, should you decide to go that route, you may end up deciding that you don't really need the Bolt and would rather just use a less expensive Roku, Fire TV or Apple TV streaming box and then pay $8-12 per month for Hulu plus maybe $6 per month for CBS All Access. Watch your local news and weather live using your OTA antenna connected to your TV and watch pretty much everything else via streaming.
 

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This tread is becoming Antenna Porn!

More antenna links and pictures please!


Finally got a chance to assemble Frankentenna in my attic. That is a Stella Labs 30-2476 with the front half of the booms of two other 30-2476s.

So, no repositioning of directors or cutting of anything -- just adding sections of boom to the front. I have been watching a vhf station (WMTW in Portland Maine which is 70 miles away) without dropout since this morning.



Strong signal and very good signal quality...



Pretty happy with the results. Total cost for the three antennas was ~$90 shipped.
 

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I'm not sure why OTA people complain so much about the price. There are really only two competitors in the market, Chanel Master and Tablo.* A Channel Master with hard drive costs $400, no service fee. A Tablo costs $300 and carries a $5/mo, $50/year or $150/lifetime setvice fee. A Roamio OTA was only $50 with a $15/mo service fee. That's roughly a 2 year break even point with those other two devices. And the Tablo also requires a 3rd party device, like a Roku, to even function because the main box is completely headless.

That being said I think if TiVo could change the price point a little they might draw in some new customers. For example if the hardware was say $150 and they offered a service fee of $8/mo, $75/year or $300/lifetime then that would be directly competitive with those other two products. The trick would be making the hardware cheap enough that they could sell it for that price and still make a profit.

Another thing that would would draw in users is if they beefed up support for streaming to 3rd party devices like the FireTV, Roku and Apple TV and/or lowered the price on the Mini so that it was cheaper to expand to a multi-room system. And adding more apps like HBO Now, Showtime, Crackle, Vimeo, etc.. would also help.

* Silicone Dust is working on a solution, but it's still in beta and is very much a DIY solution for the more geekier amoung us.
Two competitors? Amazon has recast. There's also Channels DVR which is more robust than any other option out there. And of course you have Plex. Of course the latter two are server based so you can use a cheap computer you have lying around as a server and use streaming sticks (anything but Roku). Don't see making the need for streamers a negative when you have to use Minis on a Tivo. Especially if you have streaming services that aren't on tivo which at this point is a pretty critical thing. Youre also using a Silicon Dust network OTA tuner with 2 or 4 tuners. You can use multiples for those that wanted 6 tuners. And, you already have the option of their atsc 3.0 tuner, so you're future proofed. Believe Channels is further along with 3.0 support than Plex is. Plex I believe still has some codec issue it doesn't support.

Channels also has TV Everywhere support which is a big plus, especially if you happen to share in a family members cable info. But it also supports some other streaming TV services that are free. It also does some of the local server stuff like Plex. So for an all in one solution, there is better than Tivo out there.

And going back to atsc 3.0, I don't believe tivo gives a crap about it. Not sure why anyone would plunk down hundreds of dollars on an atsc 1.0 box of sorts at this stage. For me, I swap out my Quatro hdhomerun and plug in their 3.0 box and just keep on chugging with the rest of my already owned equipment.

If there was any plus to tivo there it'd be you could still make use of the mini's and just replace the main box with an OTA 3.0 box if they ever decide to make one. But then you're still going from the mini or main to the built in TV apps or a separate streamer app. The whole switching input argument that everyone brings up.

I just don't get why people still cling to tivo like they think they're actually going to update and do something new and innovative, bring about the convergence everyone wanted for so long. Even with OTA, I'm much happier with Channels now that I don't have some big main box (mini pc sits behind my TV) and just the one streamer on my video sources.
 

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Two competitors? Amazon has recast. There's also Channels DVR which is more robust than any other option out there. And of course you have Plex. Of course the latter two are server based so you can use a cheap computer you have lying around as a server and use streaming sticks (anything but Roku). Don't see making the need for streamers a negative when you have to use Minis on a Tivo. Especially if you have streaming services that aren't on tivo which at this point is a pretty critical thing. Youre also using a Silicon Dust network OTA tuner with 2 or 4 tuners. You can use multiples for those that wanted 6 tuners. And, you already have the option of their atsc 3.0 tuner, so you're future proofed. Believe Channels is further along with 3.0 support than Plex is. Plex I believe still has some codec issue it doesn't support.

Channels also has TV Everywhere support which is a big plus, especially if you happen to share in a family members cable info. But it also supports some other streaming TV services that are free. It also does some of the local server stuff like Plex. So for an all in one solution, there is better than Tivo out there.

And going back to atsc 3.0, I don't believe tivo gives a crap about it. Not sure why anyone would plunk down hundreds of dollars on an atsc 1.0 box of sorts at this stage. For me, I swap out my Quatro hdhomerun and plug in their 3.0 box and just keep on chugging with the rest of my already owned equipment.

If there was any plus to tivo there it'd be you could still make use of the mini's and just replace the main box with an OTA 3.0 box if they ever decide to make one. But then you're still going from the mini or main to the built in TV apps or a separate streamer app. The whole switching input argument that everyone brings up.

I just don't get why people still cling to tivo like they think they're actually going to update and do something new and innovative, bring about the convergence everyone wanted for so long. Even with OTA, I'm much happier with Channels now that I don't have some big main box (mini pc sits behind my TV) and just the one streamer on my video sources.
You realize that the post you quoted was from 8 years ago right?
 

· jeffjs
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The OTA market just isn't big enough to save Tivo. If you live in a large city like NY you can get quite a few OTA channels...but for the people between NY and LA the OTA offerings are very few. There's just not enough market there for Tivo to survive.
 
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