Sonic Blue Chpt. 11 and Sale of Assets - Page 7 - AVS | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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ReplayTV & Showstopper PVRs > Sonic Blue Chpt. 11 and Sale of Assets
sfhub's Avatar sfhub 02:59 PM 03-23-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by majortom
Well, while that would certainly save on dial up costs for them, it would be a support nightmare. In addition, there are software development costs that are non-trivial.
I think most folks can enter a username/password/access number, I
know my mom can and she's pretty internet illiterate.

If the dialup fails simply ask the user if they can connect with their PC.

Replay is already connecting through earthlink dialup with internal
user/pass and user selected dialup #. What is being proposed is just
to create a panel that would expose the user/pass. This is not rocket
science.

lizard_boy's Avatar lizard_boy 04:14 PM 03-23-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by majortom
I am neither pro-Replay nor anti-Replay.
/carmi
translation:

I am negative. All the time. About everything.
majortom's Avatar majortom 06:05 PM 03-23-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by lizard_boy
translation:

I am negative. All the time. About everything.
No, it means that, unlike many on here, I am objective and dispassionate, not emotional and irrational. I also do not resort to attacking the messenger when I dislike the message. If you have specific evidence that contradicts statements that I have made, why not present that? If not, attacking me just reinforces my point that many on here are too emotional to think clearly on this subject.

As I have said, I hope things turn out well for everyone, I just want to make sure that potential customers understand the risk they are taking.

/carmi
majortom's Avatar majortom 06:13 PM 03-23-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by sfhub
I think most folks can enter a username/password/access number, I
know my mom can and she's pretty internet illiterate.

If the dialup fails simply ask the user if they can connect with their PC.

Replay is already connecting through earthlink dialup with internal
user/pass and user selected dialup #. What is being proposed is just
to create a panel that would expose the user/pass. This is not rocket
science.
While it is true that many people would have no trouble with this, it does however, create yet another variable that makes it harder for a technical support person to diagnose any problems. Industry average costs for a support call are between $25 and $50. Based on an estimate of $3 a month for service (see previous discussions of this costing), a single support call could wipe out 5-15 months of savings. That does not even take into account the costs of new development and testing for this new software.

/carmi
Justin526's Avatar Justin526 06:13 PM 03-23-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by majortom
As I have said, I hope things turn out well for everyone, I just want to make sure that potential customers understand the risk they are taking.

/carmi

As I have stated on the Tivo board, potential ReplayTV customers can eliminate all risk by purchasing their new units at Costco and subscribing on a monthly basis.

Additionally, let's calm down kids....no need for fighting. This looks like it's getting ugly. If you're going to behave like this we're going to have to send you guys into timeout or banish you to the romper room boards.
majortom's Avatar majortom 06:20 PM 03-23-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by Justin526
As I have stated on the Tivo board, potential ReplayTV customers can eliminate all risk by purchasing their new units at Costco and subscribing on a monthly basis.
What do these boxes cost at Costco? Will they accept them back if one has sent in the UPC code for a rebate?

/carmi
Justin526's Avatar Justin526 06:28 PM 03-23-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by majortom
What do these boxes cost at Costco? Will they accept them back if one has sent in the UPC code for a rebate?

/carmi
They are 60 hour boxes and run $249. There are no rebates available but the price of the box without rebate falls right in line with what you'd expect a box of that capacity with a rebate to cost elsewhere. Since there are no rebates available on the 5060's there is no need to worry about cutting the upc.

Buying the box from Costco is a no risk proposition and at this point is the only truly safe thing a new ReplayTV customer can do.
lizard_boy's Avatar lizard_boy 07:43 PM 03-23-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by majortom
No, it means that, unlike many on here, I am objective and dispassionate, not emotional and irrational. I also do not resort to attacking the messenger when I dislike the message. If you have specific evidence that contradicts statements that I have made, why not present that? If not, attacking me just reinforces my point that many on here are to emotional to think clearly on this subject.

As I have said, I hope things turn out well for everyone, I just want to make sure that potential customers understand the risk they are taking.

/carmi
translation:

I am Spock. I have removed all emotions from my mind. I wear my StarFleet uniform to work on casual Fridays.
RTK's Avatar RTK 07:55 PM 03-23-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by lizard_boy
translation:

I am Spock. I have removed all emotions from my mind. I wear my StarFleet uniform to work on casual Fridays.
:)
lizard_boy's Avatar lizard_boy 10:11 PM 03-23-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by RTK
:)
I'm thinking majorbadnews' status indicator should be changed to "Hall Monitor"
mpatnode's Avatar mpatnode 10:42 PM 03-23-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by majortom
While it is true that many people would have no trouble with this, it does however, create yet another variable that makes it harder for a technical support person to diagnose any problems. Industry average costs for a support call are between $25 and $50. Based on an estimate of $3 a month for service (see previous discussions of this costing), a single support call could wipe out 5-15 months of savings. That does not even take into account the costs of new development and testing for this new software.

/carmi
Just let me transfer my lifetime membership on my 2000 to a new 5040 (I'll pay for the hardware) and I'd be happy.

mp
arjay's Avatar arjay 11:06 PM 03-23-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by majortom
No, it means that, unlike many on here, I am objective and dispassionate, not emotional and irrational. I also do not resort to attacking the messenger when I dislike the message. If you have specific evidence that contradicts statements that I have made, why not present that? If not, attacking me just reinforces my point that many on here are to emotional to think clearly on this subject.
Indeed, you're a perfect asswhole!
majortom's Avatar majortom 11:41 PM 03-23-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by lizard_boy
translation:

I am Spock. I have removed all emotions from my mind. I wear my StarFleet uniform to work on casual Fridays.
I guess you do not have any content to add to this discussion, just personal attacks. As they say, when you cannot attack the message, attack the messenger.

/carmi
majortom's Avatar majortom 11:42 PM 03-23-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by arjay
Indeed, you're a perfect asswhole!
Wow, an even more impressive argument.

/carmi
Justin526's Avatar Justin526 11:52 PM 03-23-2003
GROW UP PEOPLE! Majortom, my workaround is the perfect solution for people who want to jump into ReplayTV at this moment, so there is no need to further dissuade people from making a purchase. I will make sure all are informed. It seems that your efforts (valiant as they are) are doing nothing more than bugging people. This has to stop.
sfhub's Avatar sfhub 12:16 AM 03-24-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by majortom
While it is true that many people would have no trouble with this, it does however, create yet another variable that makes it harder for a technical support person to diagnose any problems. Industry average costs for a support call are between $25 and $50. Based on an estimate of $3 a month for service (see previous discussions of this costing), a single support call could wipe out 5-15 months of savings. That does not even take into account the costs of new development and testing for this new software.

/carmi
Your numbers simply don't make sense. There's not much you can
do with a replay that isn't working. Basically you run through a small
checklist of common problems and if that doesn't work, issue an RMA.
The support folks almost never contact engineering so they mostly
resolve stuff themselves and the cost is purely what you pay the
support person (phone cost is negligible). The Indian support guys
are getting $50/day. According to the back of knapkin calculations
the average call lasts a day?

In addition, $3/month for the dialup costs seem way out of line as well.
Netzero is doing fine with $10/month unlimited so you are saying a
replay unit that connects once a day during wee hours of night for
10 minutes is costing replay $3/month/unit?

If you can point to the SB financial statement where these numbers
are supported then maybe they have some credibility, otherwise
they are pretty useless and any conclusions drawn from them are
pretty suspect.
majortom's Avatar majortom 07:26 AM 03-24-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by sfhub
The support folks almost never contact engineering so they mostly
resolve stuff themselves and the cost is purely what you pay the
support person (phone cost is negligible).
Industry average technical support call costs are based on U.S. based call centers and take into account fully burdened employee costs as well as infrastructure and other costs.

Quote:
In addition, $3/month for the dialup costs seem way out of line as well. Netzero is doing fine with $10/month unlimited so you are saying a replay unit that connects once a day during wee hours of night for 10 minutes is costing replay $3/month/unit?
Your argument seems to be both that technical support is cheap and that their current dial up service is even cheaper. The cost estimate per unit was based on a pop rental charge of $0.01 - $0.02 cents per minute. Netzero makes its money in several ways, they sell information about you and your net surfing to others, and they try to get users to buy additional services from them.

From their site:

Quote:
Collection and Use of Personal Information. NetZero will collect, store, compile and utilize information about you, your computer, your phone number and your use of the NetZero Services including, without limitation, information regarding the Web sites you visit and information that you provide in response to NetZero questionnaires, surveys and registration forms. NetZero may provide this information to third parties including advertisers, clients, marketing organizations and others.
If you are right and their costs for providing this service is so low, there would also be no reason to switch (if one assumes that an average NetZero customer is profitable for NetZero, is online for 1 hour a day and that those costs were what SONICBlue would pay as well, then a dial up customer should cost them only about $6 a year).

Just to make clear some of the other issues with providing service this way, no one with AOL, NetZero, Juno or other ISP that requires a custom client would be able to use it. Given that not everyone has Internet service and a PC, they would have to provide a method for signing up for service with an ISP and for discovering local dial up access numbers (for example, I have a box at my ski cabin where I have DBS service and no PC). These are just some of the more basic problems.

Either way, it does not make sense to do what you suggest.

/carmi
toots's Avatar toots 08:38 AM 03-24-2003
apropos nothing, but it seems like a great time to invent a new word to describe someone hopping around on a rectally mounted pogo stick.
BaysideBas's Avatar BaysideBas 08:51 AM 03-24-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by toots
apropos nothing, but it seems like a great time to invent a new word to describe someone hopping around on a rectally mounted pogo stick.
That would be an 'asshopper.
toots's Avatar toots 11:51 AM 03-24-2003
I like it.
LSC's Avatar LSC 01:26 PM 03-24-2003
A couple of posters have said Replay dial in numbers are Earthlink's. Earthlink is my ISP and Replay dropped the 4 Earthlink numbers available in my local dialing area over a month ago and went with a single number which is not Earthlink's. Just hope they or their successors continue to use it and do not disappear from my dialing area alltogether.
arjay's Avatar arjay 04:39 PM 03-24-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by majortom
Wow, an even more impressive argument.

/carmi
Less a matter of being dispassionately impressive as it is of putting your dispassionate negativity into a semblance of perspective.

I'd rather buy a big cheap ReplayTV at closeout prices than listen to endless droning about worst case scenario possibilities!
xyzzy's Avatar xyzzy 08:37 PM 03-24-2003
Well, first thing I'm gonna do after burning in and lifing my new twin 4532s is image the software partition on one of them. (What good's a warranty anyway?) That way, if they delete features, I have a starting point for hacking it back on. Right after they repeal the DMCA.

Might have to reopen the party on sourceforge...

Now that the replay actually is on my network, that makes fooling it so much easier, way easier than the old serial port phone proxy hacks of the 2020. If the IP goes down the tubes, it's up to us to provide schedules and updates.

I figure eventually Replays and Tivos will be without a mothership. I just hope I've moved on to the next great thing before then. If nothing else, maybe we can turn them into NAS devices and use our PCs to do the recording and slave them for storage and display.

X.
Justin526's Avatar Justin526 08:53 PM 03-24-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by xyzzy
Might have to reopen the party on sourceforge...

Will those of us with 5000's be able to be saved?
xyzzy's Avatar xyzzy 09:26 PM 03-24-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by Justin526
Will those of us with 5000's be able to be saved?
I don't see why not. However, I don't have a 5000 to play with. I suspect if this really comes to pass that we'll swap some image files so we can establish a common codebase that works across all the Replay platforms and across at least Win32, *nix and OS X.

It's happened before, with enthusiast groups. I can still get new bits for the Apple ][+ in my office, believe it or not. And, no, that's not my work machine. My work machine is a Compaq Evo N800W laptop. I just use the Apple ot wow the newbies at work. And it's never crashed.

Home is another story. That's my play machine. Dual Xeon P4 with all ports filled.

BTW, I couldn't really figure out the difference between a 4000 and 5000. Are there any significant differences?

X.
dharlow's Avatar dharlow 10:52 PM 03-24-2003
Anyone remember the 3com Audrey? They dumped the product but it still lives on. Someone even took over the public update servers.

Replay would be the same.

Daniel
heathriel's Avatar heathriel 09:28 AM 03-25-2003
I mentioned that in another thread recently :)
sfhub's Avatar sfhub 09:30 AM 03-25-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by majortom
Your argument seems to be both that technical support is cheap and that their current dial up service is even cheaper. The cost estimate per unit was based on a pop rental charge of $0.01 - $0.02 cents per minute.
All the large scale leases get custom negotiated deals. When negotiating
these deals the most important consideration for the provider is whether
it will cost them more incremental money to do the deal. SBs parameters
would not require additional money since the modem banks are sitting
idle at night anyway and bandwidth costs are most often based on peak
usage which would not be adversely affected by nightly usage. The
modems and peak bandwidth are sunk costs and any leasing deal would
be virtually pure profit. The modems and bandwidth are perishable goods.
It's not like they stop the depreciation and store the bandwidth and resell
at a later date.

Yes, my argument is that your costs are too high. If you choose to
ignore how the parameters of how replays use a net connection will
affect negotiated costs, then we just choose to disagree. Similarly
if you feel it costs the same to support a microwave oven vs a fully
configured high-end PC or MS windows, then we just choose to disagree.
asinshesq's Avatar asinshesq 09:58 AM 03-25-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by xyzzy
...BTW, I couldn't really figure out the difference between a 4000 and 5000. Are there any significant differences?

X.
The 5xxx has a better mpeg encoder chip, so its PQ is supposed to be a bit better than the 4xxx PQ. But the cost is that the 5xxx is considerably less stable than the 4xxx. This may simply be a s/w issue -- the machines use different s/w (and in fact they store their mpgs in a slightly differnt way, which is why you can't stream a 5xxx show onto a 4xxx unit or vice versa, even if you try to use dvarchive as an intermediary) -- but there is also some speculation that they perhaps underpowered the 5xxx cpu. (There's even been some loose talk about overclcking the 5xxx to bring its performance up to snuff.)

Other than that, no real differences that I can think of, except that the xx quickskip and xx instant replay navigation trick seems to work on the 5xxx live buffer (e.g. you can skip back 10 minutes while watching live by hitting 10 instant replay) while the 4xxx units are like their predecessors in that this kind of navigation only works on recorded shows.
asinshesq's Avatar asinshesq 10:11 AM 03-25-2003
Quote:
Originally posted by toots
apropos nothing, but it seems like a great time to invent a new word to describe someone hopping around on a rectally mounted pogo stick.
Hey toots, maybe baysidebas' good ole 'asshopper need to replace zimbabwe in future polls?
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