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I'm sorry, but IF.. and I say IF someone has FiOS available, then it is a far superior product option, there's also the Frontier FiOS communities, and I don't blame people for suggesting it.

So that list is missing a bunch of locations, however while the service itself is just as good as when Verizon owned those regions, the TV and Customer support from Frontier is really pretty bad.
For folks who live in a Verizon FiOS area and their home already has a FiOS optical network terminal (ONT) installed, then yes, Verizon FiOS TV is a great option for folks who wish to continue using their CableCARD TiVo DVRs with cable TV service. As pointed out above, Verizon is using a new 2 gig-capable ONT for new installations in NYC and, if not already, very soon throughout the rest of their FiOS footprint, and this new ONT does not support CableCARD as it can only translate the incoming QAM-based FiOS TV service to IPTV on the local home network. (They say that FiOS TV is "coming soon" for customers with the new ONT. We'll see if that ever actually happens or they decide against it and just try to sell those folks YouTube TV or Hulu Live, as they already do on the Verizon 5G Home service which I'm currently trialling.)

As for Frontier, from what I can gather, they no longer sell any form of Frontier-branded TV service to new subscribers anywhere in the country. I'm not aware of them yet shutting down either Frontier FiOS TV or Frontier Vantage TV (formerly AT&T Uverse TV) in any markets, although that may already be underway. But if you don't already have Frontier FiOS TV, I think it's impossible to order at this point, as Frontier only wants to sell you broadband plus streaming video services like YouTube TV or DirecTV Stream (both of which are offered on the Frontier website). I'm sure it's only a matter of time before Frontier does the same thing that another telco, CenturyLink (Lumen) did in 2020-21, and completely shut down operations of their own pay TV services.
 

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I had talked about this in another thread here and where I ended up was with a guy in the cablecard support department at Spectrum who told me that, while they won't be cutting off service, they won't be going further with them. He said there is absolutely no reason that my service would stop, as far as the two cards I have. He even looked it up to verify what he was telling me.

It just sounded like some of the stuff they are doing, progress-wise, has nothing to do with cable cards. There's a possibility, since he said that the only cable cards they are issuing now are refurbed, that there could come a time that there are no more cable cards and one would need to consider going with their option.

It's kind of like when you have older electronic equipment that still works fine, but if you need to replace it you would have to replace it with something else.
I've posted on this topic in a few other threads here, so I'm not going to put up all the evidence/links again, but it's clear at this point that Charter plans to implement "high-split" upgrades to their network that will allow much higher upload speeds. In order to do this, cable operators typically find it necessary to shut down QAM TV. Charter's CEO stated back in January that they would implement high-split in a number of markets in 2022, with others to follow after. Now, IDK, plans can and do change, so we may not see the first Charter markets have QAM TV shut down and high-split upgrades until late this year, or even early 2023. But it's coming.

And when it happens to your market, it's bye-bye CableCARD, as that technology can only work with QAM TV, not streaming IPTV (i.e. the Spectrum TV app), which Charter is transitioning to. It will likely take Charter a couple years or so to work their way around the nation to do these upgrades everywhere. So maybe your TiVo will stop working with their cable TV service in 2023. Maybe in 2024. Maybe in 2025. But I'd be shocked if it lasted until 2026. Because the mid-split upgrades are a sort of "hold-over" improvement to DOCSIS 3.1 until the next-gen DOCSIS 4.0 tech is ready to be deployed, which will allow them to offer symmetrical 10 Gbps internet service. And that's looking like it'll be ready for widespread deployment from Charter, Comcast, etc. in 2025, although I wouldn't be surprised if we didn't see it happen until 2026.

Comcast is only doing mid-split, rather than high-split, upgrades to D3.1 right now and the next couple years. So it looks like CableCARD will likely continue to work with their cable TV service until they roll out D4.0 in initial markets in 2025/2026. (And if it goes like recent network upgrades have, Comcast will start those 4.0 upgrades in Chicago, Nashville and Atlanta. We'll see.)
 

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Where / how are you getting the 100 channels to your BOLT - over the air?
Yeah, he says in his post that he's getting those channels free over-the-air. Be aware that within each generation of TiVo DVR (Roamio, Bolt, Edge, etc.), only certain models support OTA reception. Some models support both CableCARD and OTA while some models only support one or the other.
 

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But maybe 20 tops has watchable content. And half of them just show retro/classic programs.

I bought a lifetime Plex Pass to use their OTA DVR service and I don't regret it but, to be honest, there's just less and less worth recording and watching on any broadcast channel, IMO. I'm down to like one scripted series on ABC and one on Fox (both of which I could watch with better PQ on Hulu if I subscribed to it). Main thing I like it for is to record the evening national newscasts from CBS and NBC because I'm, uh, "of a certain age".

I continue to believe that the long-term future of the national broadcast networks is to merge into those companies' free ad-supported apps, i.e. CBS will eventually stream live and on-demand on PlutoTV, Fox on Tubi TV, etc. Well, except for the live sports. That's high-value content that will, for the most part, be reserved for their pay apps. I look for this transition to happen by 2030. No need to bother with ATSC 3.0 because the networks will do an end-run around their local affiliates by taking all their content into their own free and paid streaming apps.
 

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Talked to Spectrum last night (specifically cable card tech support) who told me about what their future plans phasing out CableCards.

So now Im trying to figure out how to prepare for switching to what comes next. Im of the opinion I don't want any new boxes from Spectrum so now Im looking for a service that gives me some of the networks I regularly watch plus some premium channels I currently have. It would be nice if I could use a TiVO box to search and consume that service. Would it make sense to get Edge for Cable and switch to use it as a purely streaming device when the time comes? Would things like YouTube TV work with TiVO in some way? Much as I dislike streaming services in general, it looks like this is the way things are going. What about PlutoTV or Plex TV ? Does it make sense to look at Spectrum's AppleTV offering ? So many questions...
What you want is a streaming cable TV service. That might be from Charter -- they offer it via the Spectrum TV app -- or it might be YouTube TV, DirecTV Stream, Hulu with Live TV, Fubo TV, Sling, Philo, or FrndlyTV. Be aware that only Spectrum TV, YouTube TV, DirecTV Stream and Hulu with Live TV include major local stations, so you'd probably need to supplement the latter four with an OTA antenna if you went with them. To help you choose between them, try the website linked below. Type in your zip code, then pick the local and national channels that you mainly care about and it will show you your various options and their prices.


The next step after that is figuring out what sort of equipment you want to use to run your selected service's app on. Pretty much all those services I listed support Roku, Fire TV, Apple TV, Google/Android TV, and Samsung smart TV. One of them -- DirecTV Stream -- offers their own optional custom streaming box and full-scale voice remote that delivers a very traditional cable-like user experience. (They're not rented but purchased for $120 each new or $50 each refurbished with a 1-yr warranty either way.)

Different services seem to work better on different devices, so it's difficult for me to give you advice on which to go with. I don't know which is more important to you -- a specific service/app or a specific device platform. Pick one and then I can give recommendations on which to choose for the other.

The best overall low-cost solution, IMO, is to pair YouTube TV ($65/mo) with the Onn 4K Android TV box with Google-designed remote from Walmart ($20 each). The remote is nice for YouTube TV since it has TV power and volume, plus channel up/down, and a dedicated live TV button that launches you straight into the YouTube TV app. Actually, you can just click that one button and it should turn on your TV, switch it to the correct HDMI input, and bring up the YouTube TV app on your screen so that you're ready to watch live or recorded cable TV. (That's the way it works on my parents' 2 TVs.) In most markets, YouTube TV carries the local ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox and PBS stations, plus a big variety of national cable channels. About the only noteworthy ones they still lack are the A+E nets (History, A&E, Lifetime, Vice), plus NHL Network, Magnolia, and AXS TV.

YouTube TV's HD picture quality is good, although DirecTV Stream's is definitely the best. YouTube TV is slowly rolling out support for Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound; it's already fully deployed on DirecTV Stream. Both services, as well as Hulu with Live TV, give you unlimited cloud DVR storage but your recordings auto-delete after 9 months so you can't keep them forever. You can record on as many channels simultaneously as you want. Note that Hulu with Live TV automatically includes Disney+ and ESPN+ too (in separate apps) for no extra cost. DirecTV Stream has a user interface that's most like traditional cable while Hulu's is the least like it (so might have a steeper learning curve).

Anyhow, that link I posted above will help you figure out which service has all the channels you care about. Good luck!
 

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To me, the UI looks almost the same to what I currently have on my Roamio.

EDIT: Spoke too soon, its only the same in certain areas (looking at the product pages). The 'channel' list looks the same as Google TV and the Shield too so its familiar.
Exactly. The TiVo Stream 4K runs Android TV, so its home screen in basically the same as that of your Nvidia Shield TV (which also runs Android TV). The "special sauce" that the TS4K offers is an exclusive "TiVo Stream" app which aggregates content from various underlying services into a somewhat TiVo-like UI with unified watchlist. And also, it has a TiVo-designed Android TV remote control. Some folks like the TiVo Stream app, others would just rather use the Android TV home screen for similar features. I do know that the TiVo Stream app now integrates live and on-demand content from YouTube TV. You can read about that here:


So, I dunno, if you're a TiVo-lover looking to subscribe to YouTube TV, it might be worth spending $40 on to try out. How good a job their app does in integrating content from other apps, and handing you off to that app for viewing, I'm not sure. Devil is in the details. My hunch is that you're going to find it simpler to just directly launch the YouTube TV app when you want to watch "regular cable TV" and then go to the Android TV home screen when you want to watch anything from other apps like Netflix, HBO Max, Hulu, Apple TV+, etc.
 

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load
Which services allow you to download or record to a pc?
I don't care about cost. Can you download, record, and edit? That is why I use Tivo and Spectrum.
You're going to need a two-step solution. First, you'll need to figure out which source or sources you will use to legally obtain your desired TV channels. If you want cable channels, you'll need to choose between a streaming cable TV service such as Spectrum TV, YouTube TV, Hulu with Live TV, DirecTV Stream, Fubo TV, and/or Philo. A subscription to any of these services will give you a way to legally log into almost all of the streaming "TV everywhere" authenticated websites belonging to that service's set of channels. For instance, since YouTube TV includes ESPN, you can use your YouTube TV subscription to log into ESPN.com and live stream the channel there. You'll understand why this is important later, keep reading.

If all you need are your local channels and you can get good OTA antenna reception, I suggest buying an HDHomeRun tuner. Also note that in some areas, with some of the streaming cable TV services I listed above, you will still need to rely on an OTA antenna to pull in some of your local channels, because you may not be able to stream them via their TV everywhere website. For instance, your service may not allow you to log into CBS.com to live stream your local CBS station. And if that's the case, you'll need to rely on an HDHomeRun OTA tuner.

OK, once you've got that all figured out, you're going to want to buy a subscription to Channels DVR for $8/mo or $80/yr. (First month is free to try out.) You'll run their DVR software on a Mac, PC or compatible NAS connected to your home network. You'll run their very nice Channels app on your Apple TV, Android TV or Fire TV device at each TV. The Channels DVR software will take the input from your HDHomeRun OTA tuner (if you have one) plus whatever logins you have from your streaming cable TV service(s) and use those resources to stream live local and basic cable channels to the Channels app at each TV. And of course also allow you to record them. (You won't be able to record, or possibly even watch live, premium cable channels like HBO or Showtime, so I suggest using their own custom apps, e.g. HBO Max, Showtime, etc., where their entire library is available ad-free and on-demand.) From what I understand, some of these streaming "TV everywhere" basic cable channels may not include DD 5.1 surround sound. Some may look better or worse than what you're used to seeing on traditional cable. And a few may not be available at all. You will have to do your own research and experimentation. The support pages at the Channels website (getchannels.com) should be useful to you.

Your Channels DVR recordings will be DRM-free, so you can edit them on your computer as you wish and then share them (but beware of copyright laws). The Channels DVR software features the ability to skip ads, either manually or automatically, with no work on your own part. From what I can gather, I'd say that Channels offer the overall best DVR user experience you can get, second perhaps only to TiVo.

Watch this video to learn more:
 

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That's a handy site. I wish they had locked to top column designators so I didn't have to constantly scroll back up to see which service I was looking at, but in general well done. Thanks.

I've been looking at YTTV, and notice that the CW network where I get my morning local news is listed as VOD only. That means no live streaming of their content, I assume. Almost no streaming services offer the CW as a live feed, I noticed.
Glad I gave you a helpful link. And yes, live local CW stations are missing in many markets on both YouTube TV and DirecTV Stream. I know in the latter case that Nexstar, the nation's largest local station owner, has yet to strike a deal to allow DTVS to carry their CW locals. May be the same situation on YTTV. But I also know that Nexstar is currently in the process of buying the CW network itself, so you can bet that Nexstar will suddenly be hot-to-trot to get all their CW affiliated stations carried on every single pay TV service in the nation before long.

On an unrelated note, many observers think that Nexstar will make big changes to the CW's primetime lineup in time. I suspect that by the fall 2023 season, they'll have renamed the network entirely and we'll see it ditch its focus on teens and young adults, who don't watch broadcast TV anyhow. Meanwhile, Warner would rather keep their DC superhero shows on their own HBO Max.

You can check this list to see if your local CW station is Nexstar-owned:
 

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When considering alternative devices, before making a decision people should try to live through a few AndroidTV app updates to see how remarkably poorly they are written - something basic almost always breaks, whether it's HDR or ATMOS or DolbyDigital 5.1 support or in the case of, say, HBOMAX how the app won't even load, and if does, how often it crashes. Maybe one out of four releases of that app are stable. It was three years, three years before the Paramount+ app on AndroidTV had 5.1 channel audio. My AppleTV4K app for that service had it from the beginning.

I own a Sony OLED and the Shield Pro, and they are the second and third AndroidTV based devices I've owned, and the pattern I've described has been going on for several years. Years.

I finally stopped using the Shield and the Sony's internal apps to stream, and settled on the AppleTV 4K (the only piece of Apple gear I own) where the apps exhibit none of that nonsense. I now use the Shield strictly as a Plex Server/Client, where it does a great job.

I don't know if the AndroidTV apps issue is the underlying OS, or an incomplete API released to devs, or that the writing of the apps has been delegated to someone's incompetent nephew, and I don't care. People on the AVSFORUMS site have taken to keeping apps that work on their computers and rolling back bad updates by sideloading the older app.

No matter your opinion, that's never a good sign.
I have the latest Apple TV 4K. It's expensive but worth it. There's simply no better TV streaming device, IMO. That said, my parents haven't seen the sort of problems with Android TV that you describe on their little Onn 4K boxes in the past 6 months they've used them regularly. But then they only use a few apps (mainly YTTV) and aren't demanding users. I do agree that some apps devs -- such as HBO Max -- have had a poor track record of updates. Remember when they put out a garbage redesign for their Apple TV app last year? Social media ripped them a new one and they got it fixed in a few days, ha!
 

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Can you schedule recordings? Like 24 hours ahead? Also, how easy is it to download movies from TCM?
You can schedule recordings (either one-time or recurring series recordings) ahead of time in Channels, pretty much the same way you would in TiVo, either through the 14-day program grid guide or via a search for a specific show/movie. (Also note that Channels uses Gracenote as their source for TV listings data. This is a better source than the guide data that TiVo uses, which is more prone to errors. TiVo used to use Gracenote years ago, until they bought its rival data source, Rovi.)

You set up, edit and delete scheduled recordings right from the Channels app on your TV with your remote control -- you don't have to go to the computer running the Channels server software to do those tasks.

As for recording TCM movies with Channels DVR using TCM's TV everywhere stream, yes, you can do that. It looks like a few folks were having trouble accessing that channel's TV everywhere stream, to either watch live or record it, back in Jan. 2021 but a quick update to the Channels software fixed the problem. You can see all that at this link from the Channels support website. It's a good example of how very responsive the Channels developer team is to their customers. It's a small company and their users seem very enthusiastic about how good the company is at supporting them.

 

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Also, what type of remote contol is used? The Tivo remote is the best, and they never wear out.
You'll be using whichever remote comes with the streaming device you have at each TV -- Apple TV, Fire TV, or any of the various Android TV devices (e.g. Onn 4K Box, TiVo Stream 4K, Nvidia Shield TV, etc.). Because you'll be running the Channels app on that streaming device.

If your smart TV happens to run either Android TV or Fire TV as its built-in smart operating system, then you can just use the Channels app right on the TV, using the remote control that came with the smart TV.

IMO, the overall best low-cost streaming device is the Onn 4K Android TV box at Walmart for $20. But if you're not concerned about spending, then the best streaming device of them all is the Apple TV 4K (the current one, with the improved newer-style remote), which regularly costs $170. That said, since you really like the TiVo peanut remote, you might want to check out their little Android TV box, called the TiVo Stream 4K, which regularly costs $40. Its remote is a bit smaller and somewhat differently laid out than a traditional TiVo DVR remote, though. And frankly, even though it costs twice as much, it's not any faster or more powerful than the Onn 4K box, except for the fact that the TiVo Stream 4K supports Dolby Vision HDR while the Onn only supports regular HDR. (And if you don't know the difference between those two, then you probably won't be able to see the difference either. It's not a big deal for most folks.)

Remember that while the Channels app will be installed on a streaming device (or smart TV) at every TV around your house, the Channels server software will be installed on a central computer connected to your home's wifi router. (It would be best if you can connect this computer to the router via an ethernet cable but if they're too far apart for that, a solid, fast wifi connection might be OK.) This computer can run Windows, Mac, or Linux. It can even be a specialized type of storage computer, Network Attached Storage (NAS). For a list of the requirements of what kind of computer can run the Channels server software, see their webpage here:

The last piece of the puzzle will be an HDHomeRun over-the-air tuner which you will also connect to your wifi router, and it must be connected to it with an ethernet cable). This device will pull in your local free over-the-air stations via a connected antenna (either an indoor or outdoor antenna) and feed them into the Channels software for live and recorded viewing. I don't know how well you can receive over-the-air stations where you live, so this might be a problem. You can buy a new 2-tuner HDHomeRun tuner for $110, although you can find used ones for less on eBay (which is what I did years ago and it's still running fine). Do a search on eBay for "HDHomeRun Connect". You'll see some that have 2 tuners inside and some that have 4 tuners inside, allowing you to watch/record either 2 or 4 different over-the-air channels simultaneously. Here's a 2-tuner Connect that's available right now for $65 including shipping. (BTW, you do not want any of the following: HDHomeRun Prime, HDHomeRun Scribe, HDHomeRun Dual.)
 

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Thanks for more great info. I have an LG-32-LM62 TV, but its remote is flimsy. I love my Tivo remote.
OK, you're not going to be able to run the Channels app directly on that TV. You will need to connect any of the following three types of streaming device to it in order to use the Channels app with your LG TV:

  • Apple TV
  • Fire TV
  • Android TV (which could be the TiVo Stream 4K, the Onn 4K Box, the Nvidia Shield TV, etc.)
Be aware that the Nvidia Shield TV (reg. $200) can both run the Channels server software and store your DVR recordings and also act as your app streaming device, running the Channels app on your TV. You'll probably want to connect an external USB hard drive to the Nvidia Shield TV to increase the amount of DVR recordings it can store.
 

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That remote is the only bad thing about Apple TV. I found it worthwhile to replace it with the Salt remote, which has real buttons that actually work.
It has its issues but once I got used to it, I actually quite like the Apple TV remote. And the second-gen version, which I have now, is definitely better. But, yes, the touchpad can be a bit tricky.
 
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