No ads, what about zones? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 11 Old 12-02-2000, 10:16 AM - Thread Starter
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While not only about Zones, I've been thinking a lot about this stuff this week.

As always, maybe I was a bit alarmist early in the week.

ReplayTV, Inc. (or "Replay Networks, Inc" http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/wink.gif has ALWAYS stated they intended to get out of the manf. biz - publically, in their SEC filed documents. I expected that shortly after the Showstopper debuted. My *guess*? Replay "needed" to continue to build themselves as they didn't get enough support from other manf. Why? That's another thread...

So...is this week's annoucement that shocking? Not really. Sudden? Yes. Shocking? No.

I'm surprised about the advertising portion, though. Just as TiVo, Inc. is responsible for selling "advertising" (Network Showcases, etc.) on Phillips and Sony units I think ReplayTV, Inc. will still be responsible for securing decent network partners for Zones.
(but I think the plan is for manf. to SOLELY be responsible for selling the banner ads on Zones)
(I also think the plan would be for manf. to have their own Zones - PPV most likely for cable cos. - if they so desire - ie: "upsell" for Replay)

So...short answer? I think Zones will stay.

Plus...the functionality is already there. Other than a graphic artist cranking out an updated design for the "Travel Zone" every few months to keep it fresh and network costs, there's no ongoing cost for this.

But...do I think we'll now see any Zones that require human intervention (Talk Shows, Picks)? No. And, IMHO, that's too bad - because we've seen the limitations of using Guide data and many of us have seen what *real people* picking shows (ala TiVoLution Magazine, Network Solutions) can do.

Now...if I may go off on a semi-related tangent?

What about OTHER ads on Replay-branded boxes. Someone eles commented in another thread that the Replay-branded customers will probably be "sold" to Panasonic or someone so we'll be be brought into their fold. I don't know...

But...if NOT, I think Replay-branded people are in a good position.

We'll get less (or no) ads.
We'll get the most recent upgrades. (I can't see why not)
We'll get the upgrades quicker. (w/o another company signing off)

Okay, my two cents is spent...
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post #2 of 11 Old 12-02-2000, 09:11 PM
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Since ReplayTV is no longer taking ads, many have theorized that pause ads may go away. Why have them if they aren't generating any revenue.

Zones would seem to fall into the same category. The talk show Zone never returned presumably because of the amount of work it would take to keep it current. With no sponsorship, how could the cost be justified?

The same would seem to apply to just about all of the Zones now, except for the "More, More, More!" zone which works off of raw data.

Can someone from ReplayTV comment on the future of Zones given the aparent lack of financial incentive to continue them?

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post #3 of 11 Old 12-03-2000, 06:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Well, I hope you keep the functionality at least.

It's Replay's competitive advantage (one of them).

Plus, I don't want that button on my remote to go back to "Create a Theme" - that'd be just lame! http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/wink.gif
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post #4 of 11 Old 12-05-2000, 04:23 PM - Thread Starter
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While not a movie watcher myself, I would think that Zone is extremely useful. Ditto w/ Sports.

I actually like the NBC Zones - I would love to see "showcases" (no pun intended) of all the networks like that.

And it goes w/o saying I'm in favor of Zones w/ human intervention - so you guys could "suggest" (again, no pun) programming for us.

I like the Sci-Fi Zone, the News Magazine one would be useful for fans of 60 Minutes, 20/20, etc., I like the Cartoon Network one a lot - and the Comedy Zone. Also, Crime&Punishment.

More More More! offers some gems...they're just buried in there. http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/frown.gif

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post #5 of 11 Old 12-05-2000, 05:11 PM
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Zones I use a-lot:
Sports-equestrian... you know how hard it is to find these listings normally?
Cartoon Network, Dexter's Lab, Powerpuff girls, etc. (I have kids which makes a great excuse)
Movies, to search by type. Just looking for all the letterbox stuff comes up with some real winners I wouldn't have caught otherwise.

Zones I'd LOVE to see!
Get something going with Disney! I have 2 girls 8 and 12, and I'd love a categorized Disney zone to pluck various types of shows out that either or both of them would like. They're only over every other weekend and I do spend quite a bit of time going through the listings looking for stuff to record for them to watch (not that I use the TV as a sitter mind you, but when they want to turn on the tv at 8 on Saturday night after they've run me into the ground harder than my DIs at Parris Island ever did, it's nice to have something I can feel good about them watching rather than hoping there's something on that won't warp their little minds too badly.

Ditto for Nickelodeon.

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post #6 of 11 Old 12-05-2000, 08:48 PM
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Could you please point me in the direction of the "Holiday Zone"?

I can't seem to find this one in on the ReplayZones list.

Thanks,

Space

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post #7 of 11 Old 12-05-2000, 08:59 PM
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I think I found it, were you referring to the "Holiday Themes" section
under the "More, More, More!" ReplayZone?

Now I know that "A Bionic Christmas Carol" will be on the SCI-FI channel
this year, what a relief! http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/smile.gif

Space



[This message has been edited by Space (edited 12-06-2000).]

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post #8 of 11 Old 12-06-2000, 07:42 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally posted by Space:
I think I found it, were you referring to the "Holiday Themes" section
under the "More, More, More!" ReplayZone?

Now I know that "A Bionic Christmas Carol" will be on the SCI-FI channel
this year, what a relief! http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/smile.gif

Space

[This message has been edited by Space (edited 12-06-2000).]
Actually, this IS a relief. Spotlighting (or putting them in categories YOU care about) weird shows like this that you would never find w/ a VCR/TVGuide is JUST what Zones are for!!

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post #9 of 11 Old 12-06-2000, 08:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by ReplayMike:
Which are your favorite Zones?
From memory:
[*]Movies Wonderful topical searching![*]Cooking Hey, I love to cook![*]Sci-Fi Invaluable for finding Trek episodes as well as more esoteric stuff.[*]Sports I like "unusual" sports.[*]More, More, More Letterbox, MPAA Rating, Star Rating, and sometimes just the other catagories.[*]Any "Now Showing" This is great! I would love to see this more logically re-worked (see other posting in this forum).

Keep the functionality, improve the layout (re-work & re-organize some of the catagories), remove the sponsored stuff, and I'm sure you'll please most of us!

[soapbox up]
If sponsorship really is going away, then consider reworking the layout of all the screens (Menu, Zones, Pause, etc.) to eliminate the "wasted space". The current configuration has proven to be a very successful "proof-of-concept" for corporate-sponsored design, so definatly keep that in your files, but if there is not going to be any corporate sponsorship then use that opportunity to re-design the interface for that market. I realize that this will take some resources, but you will end up with a slick, clean, cutting-edge product.

While I definatly don't speak for everyone, your current user base is a great potential "test bed" for new and innovative changes. I for one, would embrace the chance to be able to try out and take advantage of new features, UI designs, etc. Make it an "opt-in" program. I just know that you will get a ton of "volunteers"!
[soapbox down]

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post #10 of 11 Old 12-06-2000, 09:07 PM
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I use the Soccer zone and the Wrestling zone. I really like the functionality of the Zones. Please keep it!
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post #11 of 11 Old 12-06-2000, 09:09 PM
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Since the topic is up:

Zone's I've used:
History (under more more more?)
SciFi

'btf
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