Official Ceton Echo Extender Info Thread - Page 49 - AVS Forum
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post #1441 of 7721 Old 10-05-2012, 09:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gabrielcab View Post

How would TiVo be an alternative to this Echo when you have to pay $15 a month to use their box? At least with my cable company they have a DVR for that price that work like the HOP from the satellite company.

This may be straying off topic, but I will answer your question. A Tivo DVR (Premiere XL4) + a couple of IP STB's (Tivo Minis) would be more or less the same as the Ceton Q + Ceton Echos setup and more or less the same as the whole-home DVR system offered by cable company X. No doubt, what Ceton was going to deliver would best the Tivo, but alas. Still, you can buy a lifetime Tivo subscription upfront with the Tivo DVR for $399, then connect a couple of Minis to it and break even over the cable company (in my case FiOS) in just over 2 years time. YMMV, but I'd prefer to stop paying FiOS to rent their STB's each month. Tivo will be the only way for me to do that now, unless I decide to build and maintain an HTPC. Not likely.
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post #1442 of 7721 Old 10-05-2012, 10:04 AM
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What maintanence are you talking about?

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post #1443 of 7721 Old 10-05-2012, 10:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Jakes View Post

This may be straying off topic, but I will answer your question. A Tivo DVR (Premiere XL4) + a couple of IP STB's (Tivo Minis) would be more or less the same as the Ceton Q + Ceton Echos setup and more or less the same as the whole-home DVR system offered by cable company X. No doubt, what Ceton was going to deliver would best the Tivo, but alas. Still, you can buy a lifetime Tivo subscription upfront with the Tivo DVR for $399, then connect a couple of Minis to it and break even over the cable company (in my case FiOS) in just over 2 years time. YMMV, but I'd prefer to stop paying FiOS to rent their STB's each month. Tivo will be the only way for me to do that now, unless I decide to build and maintain an HTPC. Not likely.

Properly set up HTPC will require just as much maintenance as TiVO.

What is the cost of the Minis?

Currently on TiVO website: TIVO XL4: $399 + Lifetime Subscription: $499 = $898 just to connect 1 TV. Add the cost of Mini's to connect additional TV's, and it still remains unclear whether they will not require additional, perhaps $5/month subscription.

HTPC: $300 for PC, $150 for Ceton InfiniTV4 = $450 exactly half the price. Add the cost of extenders. I got ours when newegg clearanced Linksys MCE's out at $80 a pop. You can also add additional tuners to the HTPC, should you run out of tuners (we have 8), which you can't do with TiVO.

Having paid $430 for the Ceton when they first came out, still made financial sense, since we got over 2 years out of the system, which was running on 2x ATI DCT's before.

6 TV's in the house on FiOS and we only pay $4.99/month to connect them all!!! Power to the CableCard and WMC7!!!
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post #1444 of 7721 Old 10-05-2012, 10:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueiedgod View Post

Properly set up HTPC will require just as much maintenance as TiVO.
What is the cost of the Minis?
Currently on TiVO website: TIVO XL4: $399 + Lifetime Subscription: $499 = $898 just to connect 1 TV. Add the cost of Mini's to connect additional TV's, and it still remains unclear whether they will not require additional, perhaps $5/month subscription.
HTPC: $300 for PC, $150 for Ceton InfiniTV4 = $450 exactly half the price. Add the cost of extenders. I got ours when newegg clearanced Linksys MCE's out at $80 a pop. You can also add additional tuners to the HTPC, should you run out of tuners (we have 8), which you can't do with TiVO.
Having paid $430 for the Ceton when they first came out, still made financial sense, since we got over 2 years out of the system, which was running on 2x ATI DCT's before.

Again, I fear we are taking this thread off topic. But a Tivo, as far as I am aware, requires no maintenance. Is that what you are saying about an HTPC? Perhaps I was wrong. I could simply plug in the HTPC and never look at it again in my component closet?

The Tivo Stream (just released) is $129. The cost of the Mini has not yet been announced, but based on that product and other Tivo products, I would guess it would be in that range.

Google “Tivo lifetime coupon” and you will see that it is pretty easy to get lifetime for $399.

Are you saying I could build a HTPC + 2 extenders for $610 then have zero other costs other than 1 Cable CARD? Is it a laptop because I did not see the cost of peripherals? And it will work with my Harmony 900? And my wife will be able to *easily* use it? And the extenders will offer all of the functionality of a traditional STB with access to the DVR?
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post #1445 of 7721 Old 10-05-2012, 11:00 AM
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I don't maintain my HTPC. It is set up and it just works. Even if I did, the cost savings over TiVo is huge and it does so much more.

The cost of building an HTPC with two extenders is more than $610 when the O.S. is considered but it is probably about what the TiVo with a lifetime subscription will set you back.

And yes, my HTPC is an "appliance" that works with my H 900 with ease.

I am waiting on the Echo beta to start up so I cannot comment on the extender/DVR functionality but have read that others use xBox350 or some of the older extenders without issue for DVR use.

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post #1446 of 7721 Old 10-05-2012, 11:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jakes View Post

Again, I fear we are taking this thread off topic. But a Tivo, as far as I am aware, requires no maintenance. Is that what you are saying about an HTPC? Perhaps I was wrong. I could simply plug in the HTPC and never look at it again in my component closet?
The Tivo Stream (just released) is $129. The cost of the Mini has not yet been announced, but based on that product and other Tivo products, I would guess it would be in that range.
Google “Tivo lifetime coupon” and you will see that it is pretty easy to get lifetime for $399.
Are you saying I could build a HTPC + 2 extenders for $610 then have zero other costs other than 1 Cable CARD? Is it a laptop because I did not see the cost of peripherals? And it will work with my Harmony 900? And my wife will be able to *easily* use it? And the extenders will offer all of the functionality of a traditional STB with access to the DVR?

Yup, simple as that.

Once set up, it requires no maintnance.

What peripherals? HTPC, once set up, does not need keyboard or mouse, everything is controlled via remote. I lock mine in "media only mode" and they boot directly into WMC to prevent accidental venturing into the Windows, which in some hands can do lots of damage.

Yes, it will work with Harmony.

Yes, Wife will use it. What is up and to the left, may be down and to the right, but most people can adjust to the different location of their items.

Yup, extenders allow you have full access to your TV and media content.

Lots of information is available. But, it is not as complicated as you may think. If a person far removed from IT world like me (I am chemist) can set one up and make it work, then it is definitely doable for someone somewhat related to IT world.

Since there are no other statistics to judge product's problem rate, then number of posts on a related forum can be used to arrive to a statistical conclusion.

According to TiVO SEC filing there are 2 million subscribers. There are over 1 milion "problem" posts on TiVO community forums.
Microsoft states that there are 6 million WMC7 users (6% of Win 7 users (400 million) fire up WMC, and 25% of those use it regularly). The number of problems reported by WMC users are about 400,000 out of 6,000,000 vs 1,000,000 out of 2,000,000 for TiVO.

Either TiVO is not as simple as they make it to be, or the user base is completely clueless.

6 TV's in the house on FiOS and we only pay $4.99/month to connect them all!!! Power to the CableCard and WMC7!!!
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post #1447 of 7721 Old 10-05-2012, 11:28 AM
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If all you will use the HTPC for is Windows Media Center for live TV and DVR with extenders, then it is a very easy setup. Not sure if TIVO can, but one thing I like about Media Center is you can specify what channels to activate, so you can remove duplicate standard channels and channels you don't have access to.

It can start getting complicated when you get into bluray discs (compatibly issues thanks to good ol' copy protection) and MKV movie libraries and wanting HTPC to output HD (DTS-MA/TrueHD) audio.
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post #1448 of 7721 Old 10-05-2012, 02:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueiedgod View Post

HTPC: $300 for PC, $150 for Ceton InfiniTV4 = $450 exactly half the price.

I think you forgot at least a Windows license in that price, and probably a decent case if you want something that can actually be placed in the same place you'd place a Tivo, and of course you have a PC doing the video playback processing vs a CE SOC.

See what an anamorphoscopic lens can do, see movies the way they were meant to be seen
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post #1449 of 7721 Old 10-05-2012, 03:00 PM
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Yup. Not everybody has windows licenses lying about.

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post #1450 of 7721 Old 10-06-2012, 07:17 AM
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Actually, MediaCenter for Windows 8 *IS* completed, and it's already right on the Win8 media you can download from Technet or MSDN. It's just hidden/inaccessible unless you know how. It's actually another "edition" of Windows and has its own system image on the Win8 media, it's just an edition that they only sell keys for as an upgrade, so they hide the ability to directly install it by default.

Following a procedure shown in this article (http://forums.mydigitallife.info/threads/35650-Creating-a-Windows-8-AIO-with-Media-Center-manually) and elsewhere on the internet, you can take your MSDN/Technet download of Windows 8 Pro and turn it in to an AIO, All-In-One, disc containing all of the different editions (to get the x86/x64 Enterprise editions on the AIO disc, you'll also have to use the Enterprise edition download from MSDN/Technet. The tool you use to do this is the (free from Microsoft) Windows ADK, Assessment and Deployment Kit (formerly AIK, Automated Installation Kit) to disassemble and reassemble the editions/images on the media.

There are actually 8 Windows 8 editions:
Windows 8 (x86 & x64)
Windows 8 Pro (x86 & x64)
Windows 8 Pro with MediaCenter (x86 & x64) (hidden on the installation media)
Winodws 8 Enterprise (x86 & x64)

Plus a sort-of 9th: Windows RT, which is Windows 8 for ARM CPUs (tablets), has limited "legacy" desktop support (i.e., basically Start Screen & Windows Store [formerly "Metro"] apps only)

What you find people saying (on Microsoft sites and on Wikipedia) is not technically correct: MediaCenter is not an "add-on" to Windows (though it can be thought of that way). MediaCenter is not distributed as an application that's installed on Windows. It's an edition of Windows. With Vista, Home Premium and Ultimate editions were MediaCenter editions. With Win7 is was part of all of the editions including and above Home Premium. With Win8, there is only ONE edition that includes MediaCenter, and it's called "Windows 8 Pro with Media Center". Windows 8 Pro does not contain MediaCenter. Nor does Win8 Enterprise. The reason you can't "add" MediaCenter to Enterprise, is because you can't "add" one edition of Windows to another edition. When you upgrade from Win8 Pro to Win8 Pro with Media center, you're moving to a different edition of Windows, one that's a pure superset. And as it happens, Microsoft will only allow moving to the Win8Pro+MC edition from the Win8Pro edition (plus a 2-in-one upgrade path from Win8 to Win8Pro+MC, which they're calling "Pro Pack"). With Win7, all editions were progressively pure superset of each-other. That was not the case with Vista (business dropped MediaCenter), nor is it the case with Win8 when you factor in the MediaCenter edition.

I created one of those AIO discs, and installed Win8 Pro+MC directly from the install media (on a USB thumbdrive) on an empty hard drive, so I can assure you that MediaCenter has been completed, and I'm running it right now. Those bits came directly off the MSDN/TechNet download for Win8 Pro. However, Microsoft has not yet sold any product keys for Media Center, so there is no way to activate that edition of Windows even with an MSDN/TechNet subscription, so I am currently running unactivated. You cannot use a Win8 Pro product key for a Win8 Pro+MC edition, because they're different editions with incompatible product keys. All of the editions of Windows found on those MSDN/Technet downloads have a "default product key" built in to them (it was the same with Win7) that will not activate. So, when you install without a product key, you actually ARE using a product key, it's just that default key. Some of the places online that were describing the leaked media (before they were available on MSDN/Technet) were listing these keys, but they're nothing special, and they don't buy you anything. The reason they were listed is that by default, you can't install without a product key, but entering these default keys bypasses that limitation. However, the above procedure to create an AIO disc puts the Windows installer in a mode where it DOES allow installation without entering a product key, just as with Win7.

Hope that helps! I spent a weekend learning all of that last month.
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post #1451 of 7721 Old 10-08-2012, 06:10 AM
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While the windows 8 talk is nice, I for one would like to at least see something of an offical spec from Ceton regarding the capabilities of the Echo like will it support direct DVD/BD rips, MKV HRB files etc. I think they should know by now what the plans are if they are going to release by December. Or maybe thats what the delay is about?

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post #1452 of 7721 Old 10-08-2012, 09:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post

I think you forgot at least a Windows license in that price, and probably a decent case if you want something that can actually be placed in the same place you'd place a Tivo, and of course you have a PC doing the video playback processing vs a CE SOC.

Windows license is $30 when you buy them in a pack of 3, about $12 when you buy as OEM.

nMedia case is $40-$45, but you can get one on sale for $30 shipped.

What the difference between Windows embedded and CESOC? Like I said earlier, I am far removed form an IT person, and does it really make a difference if a PC does video playback, or System on Chip (yes, I googled it)?

6 TV's in the house on FiOS and we only pay $4.99/month to connect them all!!! Power to the CableCard and WMC7!!!
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post #1453 of 7721 Old 10-08-2012, 10:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueiedgod View Post

Windows license is $30 when you buy them in a pack of 3,

I don't need 3, and I'm not going to violate the license by selling the other copies.
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about $12 when you buy as OEM.

By my reasearch it's still $99 for Home Premium OEM/System Builder.
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What the difference between Windows embedded and CESOC?

Consumer Electronics SOC (System On a Chip), ie a hardware decoder without the issues with PCs doing playback in software or software/hardware (DXVA).
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...and does it really make a difference if a PC does video playback, or System on Chip (yes, I googled it)?

It does to me, I used to use an HTPC for playback, and I thought it was great and I argued with people (just like Assassin and others do today) that people who said a hardware decoder/player (at the time it was mostly PC vs MyHD discussion) was better didn't have something set up right with the PC. Then I got a SageTV HD100 extender and basically ate my own words and I have no desire to go back to having Microsoft, or Open Source, or any other such software running on a general purpose processor handling my audio/video.

See what an anamorphoscopic lens can do, see movies the way they were meant to be seen
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post #1454 of 7721 Old 10-08-2012, 10:37 AM
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Back on topic--any further word from Ceton?

--Dean L. Surkin
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post #1455 of 7721 Old 10-08-2012, 02:21 PM
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Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post

... Then I got a SageTV HD100 extender and basically ate my own words and I have no desire to go back to having Microsoft, or Open Source, or any other such software running on a general purpose processor handling my audio/video.

Yeah, now enter the Echo. Hopefully SageTv HD100 = Ceton Echo = Happy us!

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post #1456 of 7721 Old 10-08-2012, 03:26 PM
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Are the beta testers allowed to post here about the product or are they under NDA?
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post #1457 of 7721 Old 10-08-2012, 06:02 PM
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Are the beta testers allowed to post here about the product or are they under NDA?
We haven't gotten as far as receiving a product to test yet, so there really isn't anything to talk about. No idea if there will be an NDA or not, but I suspect not.
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post #1458 of 7721 Old 10-09-2012, 05:11 AM
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Yeah, now enter the Echo. Hopefully SageTv HD100 = Ceton Echo = Happy us!

God I hope not.

I hope it is at the very least = to the HD300.
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post #1459 of 7721 Old 10-09-2012, 06:20 AM
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God I hope not.
I hope it is at the very least = to the HD300.

Sorry - I wasn't thinking, you're %200 correct. The HD300 and we're all happy, I think.

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post #1460 of 7721 Old 10-09-2012, 06:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gsr View Post

We haven't gotten as far as receiving a product to test yet, so there really isn't anything to talk about. No idea if there will be an NDA or not, but I suspect not.

There was no NDA required from beta testers for the Ceton Companion app. They stated that they wanted to encourage talk about the product. I don't know if they will apply the same policy to the Echo.

--Dean L. Surkin
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post #1461 of 7721 Old 10-09-2012, 06:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueiedgod View Post

Windows license is $30 when you buy them in a pack of 3, about $12 when you buy as OEM.
nMedia case is $40-$45, but you can get one on sale for $30 shipped.
What the difference between Windows embedded and CESOC? Like I said earlier, I am far removed form an IT person, and does it really make a difference if a PC does video playback, or System on Chip (yes, I googled it)?

Where do you find these licenses? I really want to know. I have been paying $80 for the OEM of Win7Home Premium and $129 or there abouts for the 3 license family upgrade pack.

Thanks for any imput.
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post #1462 of 7721 Old 10-09-2012, 06:36 AM
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Eric stated somewhere in this thread that there most likely will not be an NDA but that was a few months ago in response to my question and things could change.

Still patiently waiting for the email from ceton saying my beta Echo is ready to ship.

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post #1463 of 7721 Old 10-09-2012, 07:29 AM
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Originally Posted by skybolt View Post

Sorry - I wasn't thinking, you're %200 correct. The HD300 and we're all happy, I think.

as a hd300 user, I wouldn't be happy. It needs to do more otherwise there is no reason for me to replace the hd300s. I want netflix, which is the only thing I think the hd300 is missing.
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post #1464 of 7721 Old 10-09-2012, 07:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Derek K. View Post

as a hd300 user, I wouldn't be happy. It needs to do more otherwise there is no reason for me to replace the hd300s. I want netflix, which is the only thing I think the hd300 is missing.

True, that would be nice - I was more or less refering to how snappy it responds and the fact the basically no transcoding is needed. Netflix and iNet Tv are not hardware constraints, but merly programming ones. That can be added if it is not initially supported - I hope.

Also the HD300, doesn't work with 7MC, and the Echo hopefully does smile.gif

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post #1465 of 7721 Old 10-09-2012, 08:48 AM
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I don't need 3, and I'm not going to violate the license by selling the other copies.
By my reasearch it's still $99 for Home Premium OEM/System Builder.

Usually you can find some student type deal out there for around $30-40. Just need an .edu address and you can get those at a couple places online.
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post #1466 of 7721 Old 10-09-2012, 08:50 AM
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Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post


It does to me, I used to use an HTPC for playback, and I thought it was great and I argued with people (just like Assassin and others do today) that people who said a hardware decoder/player (at the time it was mostly PC vs MyHD discussion) was better didn't have something set up right with the PC. Then I got a SageTV HD100 extender and basically ate my own words and I have no desire to go back to having Microsoft, or Open Source, or any other such software running on a general purpose processor handling my audio/video.

Hate to keep us off topic, but do you think it provides better quality, more consistent, etc. or something?
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post #1467 of 7721 Old 10-09-2012, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by dsurkin View Post

There was no NDA required from beta testers for the Ceton Companion app. They stated that they wanted to encourage talk about the product. I don't know if they will apply the same policy to the Echo.

I wonder why everyone is so concerned about an NDA. Why would Ceton even bother with it? If the Echo is lame, people will rant about it, NDA be darned. Yes, it is possible that they will obtain a court order forcing AVSFORUM or GREENBUTTON to disclose the IP of the NDA-breaking offender in order to pursue legal action, but I'm not really sure what they would benefit from that.
Also, it seems like they want to start selling these before the holidays, so they'll probably start doing that in a month anyway. So this beta is pretty meaningless I think.
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post #1468 of 7721 Old 10-09-2012, 10:45 AM
 
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They will be beta testing the software, which is easily updated after the purchase by the end user.
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post #1469 of 7721 Old 10-09-2012, 04:18 PM
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Can't imagine there will be a NDA either. If they want to sell this thing by the holidays they will need all the press/hype/coverage they can get.

I still say it will be nearly impossible to have this thing for sale by 2012 hoildays since it hasn't even been beta tested yet. We shall see...
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post #1470 of 7721 Old 10-09-2012, 04:33 PM
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The beta test can go all the way up to mid-November. Even if these are shipped needing a f/w update that isn't really a problem as they'll be attached to the network and the unit can be flashed with revised f/w. A lot of electronics comes to the end user this way now. Look at Blu-ray players. Some come with an update cd, that is outdated already, and instructions on how to flash the f/w.

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