The ONE SINGLE ReplayTV / $149 Activation Thread - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 04:50 PM - Thread Starter
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This is it. Post factual information here, no personal attacks or simple opinions. Any other threads created will be merged into this one.

[UPDATE] At this point, I realize that there's no way I can just tell people to stop talking about this...

As long as it stays in this thread and is not personal or flaming, fair game.

Remember, it's just television...
Planet Replay: http://www.planetreplay.com
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post #2 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 05:04 PM
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FACT: jleavens is my new hero for killing off all of the annoying noob threads that have littered this forum for the past 14 days :D

Now let's all just have a group hug and start speculating about DVArchive 3.0

The thing I love most about deadlines is the wonderful WHOOSHing sound they make as they go past.
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post #3 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 05:16 PM
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As a long time user of RTV, I'm concerned about its brand value in the market. With all these people filing complaints in Atty. General office, TV News Show, BBB, Small Claims Court, would it affect the RTV brand? At the end of this hoopla, I hope the brand does not get "damaged" and stays credible in the market.
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post #4 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 05:50 PM
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So I did my CC return of 2 55xx's that went deep sleep. Will buy then back when they go refurb at the outlet. So on to bigger and better things.
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post #5 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 05:52 PM
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I hate to say it but I think this 'brand' is done. I think most people that are going to spend this kind of money on something are going to check it out on the internet and run across this mess.
Having said that, 'brand' names can be changed and we might not see ReplayTV on the market after a couple of months, we will see 'whatever' on the front of what was ReplayTV's and really nothing will change but what it's called. The names have changed in the past and I predict the name will change again, real quick, but not the company producing them.

Whoops, I just noticed I wasn't suppose to enter an opinion, sorry about that.
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post #6 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 05:57 PM
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Can I be the first to say that:















The Sky Is Falling.



Thanks, I needed that.
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post #7 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 06:08 PM
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Saying they aren't long for the market is very much an emotional response. This latest SNAFU might end up helping ReplayTV more than hurting it, but the future for standalone DVRs of ANY brand is very much up in the air.

It doesn't seem to me to make much sense for DNNA to invest much in improving these glorified VCRs, especially with HD being more and more in demand (both HDTV and HD-DVD) without any conversion (by this I mean storage and playback on demand) standards set in stone yet. However, even if they don't spend a dime developing the Replay beyond its current configuration, they could be integrated into very robust networked systems quite easily.

It's way too early to be making predictions of success or failure in this rapidly evolving technology.

Cheers!

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post #8 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 06:34 PM
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The title of this thread is not very helpful - should be something like "The ONE SINGLE Is-my-$149-unit-activated-or-not Thread"

Just my $10.
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post #9 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 06:52 PM - Thread Starter
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How's that?

Keep it to facts, folks. Replay's activated, deactivated, back to the store. Replay said this, Replay said that. That kind of thing.

Pete, sorry that the Replay didn't work out for you. We could tell that you were excited by the prospect...

Remember, it's just television...
Planet Replay: http://www.planetreplay.com
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post #10 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 06:55 PM
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As of tonight, my box got reactivated. I turned it on just to check it, and it was sitting at the "You must contact ReplayTV blah blah" screen. So, I pressed remind me later and the box went to registered after I did a net connect (243 Zones, net connect).

Am I missing something here? Will it get deactivated again? I checked the setup screen and it says Registered and I clicked the registration screen and it says Registered.

Anyone else try this? Anyone else getting the same or different results tonight?
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post #11 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 07:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by jleavens
How's that?

Keep it to facts, folks. Replay's activated, deactivated, back to the store. Replay said this, Replay said that. That kind of thing.
Much better. I'm gonna go take all the $10 bills I never actually sent out and go get snookered to start the new year.
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post #12 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 07:37 PM
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Ok, here's a fact:

"ReplayTV customers furious over service charges"


http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald...ss/7609763.htm
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post #13 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 07:49 PM - Thread Starter
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It's an AP story, which means that it will be widely carried.

(Of course, last time AP carried a story about ReplayTV, they incorrectly announced that QuickSkip had been removed from the product...)

Remember, it's just television...
Planet Replay: http://www.planetreplay.com
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post #14 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 07:51 PM
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My $150 Circuit city ReplayTV 5504 DVR is still activated. I last connected to their servers on 12/30/2003 at 1300E.
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post #15 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 08:14 PM
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They're not happy in NJ!

Channel 10 in NJ, article.

DNNA isn't exacly getting good Press. As far as I'm concerned when the bounced my rebate...:D

Joe in West Los Angeles, CA
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post #16 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 08:32 PM
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AP's got it with a brand new story (not related to the earlier NJ article) and it's burning up the newswires.

Do a google news search for replaytv + irk

and/or

replaytv + furious
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post #17 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 09:10 PM
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Still activated as it should be, forced net connect minutes ago.
AP News wire, Wow that din't take to long.
The ball drops on New Years Eve in more then one way.
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post #18 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 09:10 PM
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It is on ABC news now

ABC news
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post #19 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 09:24 PM
 
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the interesting thing in the Nj story is that:

1) rptv acknowledges "miscommunications", and miscommunications at "multiple levels". That's a (slight) change of tone from the blame-our-retailer stand;
2) rptv is searching for a solution.

again, i think rptv made a fatal mistake in day 1(12/17/03) by replying on the retailers for a foundamental change in its business model, with so much inventory in circulation and the holiday shopping season in full swing. It is only a fool from the mars that would have thought of doing that.

the 2nd fatal mistake is their lack of action until 12/22/03. the silence added to the confusion and dug rptv deeper into the trouble.

the 3rd fatal mistake is the blame-our-retailer announcement on 12/22/03 (or is it 12/23?). You just don't want to kill your future sales, no matter whose mistake it really is.

the 4th fatal mitake is their insistance on conditioning services on prices paid (no legal basis) and starting to deactivate rptvs in the field based on incompete s/n book keeping. that's a breach of contract between customers who paid the full price and customers who may have a claim on 3-yr of free services. This also calls into the language in the 12/22/03 press release that offered customers on 3-yr commitment then life-time services. Those who bought their units prior to 12/22/03 for $149 now may have the right to free life-time services, should rptv lose the first battle (of if those $149 customers have free 3-yr services). I suspect the legal department proof-read the press release not knowing the $149 fiasco.

the 5th mistake (may not be fatal tho.) is their giving in to some customers when approached by some philly TV stations, depending on how that was communicated to the Tv stations. You just should not make a move when you don't know the full ramifications of that move and in the worst case they should maintain equality and not discriminate some customers while favoring others (those backed by the TV stations).

folks, I think we are living "history" right now. this whole thing may very well turn into a wonderful case of how NOT to manage a crisis.
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post #20 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 09:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by jleavens
It's an AP story, which means that it will be widely carried.

(Of course, last time AP carried a story about ReplayTV, they incorrectly announced that QuickSkip had been removed from the product...)
They did release a correction after the error.
http://www.webprowire.com/summaries/511743.html
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post #21 of 466 Old 12-31-2003, 11:47 PM
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Fact:

The textbook on this sort of thing has already been written, so it's too late to include ReplayTV.

Everyone sucks more than everyone else
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post #22 of 466 Old 01-01-2004, 01:18 AM
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The more people that learn as much as possible about this, the better. Once the story gets out to the masses with a balanced perspective of BOTH sides it will be harder to emotionalize the issue.

Happy New Year!

Tim
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post #23 of 466 Old 01-01-2004, 01:52 AM
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In the "Ethical Behavior" thread the David Bott said:

Quote:
I would agree with this...but then I ask myself this...how did they know to come to this site to post about the issue as a first time poster? I only ask this because one could conclude that they were here reading all along and knew what they were buying. Other then that...how did they know to come here right after?
In my case I googled.

I have been thinking about a DVR for quite a while. TV is a very small part of my life. I have never bought a television costing more than $30. I have not had anything other than broadcast (with cheap rabbit ears) since I moved out of my parents house in 1986. I have gone years without a TV at all on several occasions. Still I wanted a DVR. I enjoy a couple shows but I'm not going to schedule my life around a TV show.

I saw the low price at techbargains and bought one. I got it for my parents. I had no idea what to get them for Christmas and this seemed ideal. My mom is always complaining about how the few shows she likes are on after her bedtime. Now that they have DirecTV it is even worse. Frasier starts two hours after she goes to bed.

I thought about it and decided to get one for myself too. I had been thinking about putting together a Shuttle box as a DVR/media center but for $150 I would rather buy off the shelf. Now I can watch Angel.

I thought the price was legitimate. I don't see that there is much to a DVR. I see the current DVR situation as being like routing (something I do know) was in the early 1990's. Back then if you wanted a router you bought a Sun box and rolled your own or you bought a cisco. They were expensive. They were complicated. Over time people developed ASICs and routing ceased to be the black art it once was. Now consumer routers are free after rebate.

I used to work for a (the?) patent attorney for TiVo. He seemed to think that the IP in a TiVo was something close to magic. Maybe he is right, but I don't see it. There are several open source projects that look pretty good. Give them another year or two and they should be near perfect.

From these forums it sounds like ReplayTV has not revised the hardware in a very long time. Judging by the specs I believe it. My understanding is that these things have cheap, slow MIPS chips. They have tiny hard drives. 10/100 NICs. The IP put into the software and UI have surely been made back. Dial up connections from iPass are cheap. If TitanTV can provide program listings free to the user then I have a hard time believing it costs ReplayTV that much to maintain their servers.

My assumption was that the new management had outsourced everything. Customer service went to Wipro (or someone), program listings to TitanTV (or someone), dial up to iPass. Now they want to get the old units out of the channel. That would give them a chunk of cash. Always a good thing to get out of an acquisition. At least that is what I would do if I were DNNA. Start figuring out how to sell my UI instead of TiVo's. Building hardware is a suckers game. Licensing is where the money is.

Now that I have looked into it I see the ReplayTV was a bad purchase for my parents. A DirecTiVo would have been much better. They are $100 and the service is only $5/month. For me the lifetime of one of these is 12-18 months. Two years at the most. From a hardware standpoint what we have now is barely useable. I look forward to changing channels without a "Please Wait" screen.

I seem to have digressed. What I wanted to say was "We Googled." I'm sorry we crashed your party. I was just looking for the people who know about ReplayTV.

Dan
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post #24 of 466 Old 01-01-2004, 06:46 AM
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Happy New Year to all.
Here is a very interesting look at DVRs by the Wall Street Journal.

http://www.sunspot.net/technology/ba...ness-headlines

With the market soon to be saturated with DVR offers, I know I have been receiving them by mail from both Direct TV and Comcast cable as we subscribe to both, the fight for market share has begun some time ago.
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post #25 of 466 Old 01-01-2004, 07:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Grosvenor
In the "Ethical Behavior" thread the David Bott said:



In my case I googled.

I have been thinking about a DVR for quite a while. TV is a very small part of my life. I have never bought a television costing more than $30. I have not had anything other than broadcast (with cheap rabbit ears) since I moved out of my parents house in 1986. I have gone years without a TV at all on several occasions. Still I wanted a DVR. I enjoy a couple shows but I'm not going to schedule my life around a TV show.

I saw the low price at techbargains and bought one. I got it for my parents. I had no idea what to get them for Christmas and this seemed ideal. My mom is always complaining about how the few shows she likes are on after her bedtime. Now that they have DirecTV it is even worse. Frasier starts two hours after she goes to bed.

I thought about it and decided to get one for myself too. I had been thinking about putting together a Shuttle box as a DVR/media center but for $150 I would rather buy off the shelf. Now I can watch Angel.

I thought the price was legitimate. I don't see that there is much to a DVR. I see the current DVR situation as being like routing (something I do know) was in the early 1990's. Back then if you wanted a router you bought a Sun box and rolled your own or you bought a cisco. They were expensive. They were complicated. Over time people developed ASICs and routing ceased to be the black art it once was. Now consumer routers are free after rebate.

I used to work for a (the?) patent attorney for TiVo. He seemed to think that the IP in a TiVo was something close to magic. Maybe he is right, but I don't see it. There are several open source projects that look pretty good. Give them another year or two and they should be near perfect.

From these forums it sounds like ReplayTV has not revised the hardware in a very long time. Judging by the specs I believe it. My understanding is that these things have cheap, slow MIPS chips. They have tiny hard drives. 10/100 NICs. The IP put into the software and UI have surely been made back. Dial up connections from iPass are cheap. If TitanTV can provide program listings free to the user then I have a hard time believing it costs ReplayTV that much to maintain their servers.

My assumption was that the new management had outsourced everything. Customer service went to Wipro (or someone), program listings to TitanTV (or someone), dial up to iPass. Now they want to get the old units out of the channel. That would give them a chunk of cash. Always a good thing to get out of an acquisition. At least that is what I would do if I were DNNA. Start figuring out how to sell my UI instead of TiVo's. Building hardware is a suckers game. Licensing is where the money is.

Now that I have looked into it I see the ReplayTV was a bad purchase for my parents. A DirecTiVo would have been much better. They are $100 and the service is only $5/month. For me the lifetime of one of these is 12-18 months. Two years at the most. From a hardware standpoint what we have now is barely useable. I look forward to changing channels without a "Please Wait" screen.

I seem to have digressed. What I wanted to say was "We Googled." I'm sorry we crashed your party. I was just looking for the people who know about ReplayTV.

Dan
Dan-

I'd unfortunately have to disagree with you on all points, even in light of recent developments that cause some hard feelings with DNNA....

The 5040 is an awsome piece of tech. Having owned a Panasonic Showstopper for a few years now, I have adjusted the way that I watch TV to take full advantage of the units. No more channel surfing (which eliminates the slow response) because none is needed. If I want to see what else is on TV, I use the directional keys to "surf" the descriptions, while the show I'm watching plays in the background...or just record and watch at my leisure only the shows I want to watch.

Don't get me started on the Commercial Advance feature, which has to be the single most amazing thing ever invented for my TV...PERIOD. Having used my 5040 now for a couple of weeks, I can't begin to tell you how much I LOVE commercial advance. I can't imagine giving it up. The networking is great as well. No, we're not dealing with any amazing "voodoo" technology, nothing magical about what the units do or how they do it...but I think that has more to do with more technologically advanced consumers than anything else. They are a good idea, although marketed poorly, IMO.

However- keeping in mind that I originally paid about $250 for my Showstopper w/lifetime service, I wouldn't pay a $200 premium for commercial advance or any other of the "advancements" (or $400 in my case, as I have two new units). When I stumbled across the deal, I jumped because it was a deal for the equipment and service, like my Showstopper. If the box and product information posted at the store, and the salesperson I was talking with at the time not all tell me that service was included at the $149 price point, I would not have purchased. Period.

This being said, I do think that DNNA hosed themselves with this snafu. If I was not already a customer, I wouldn't buy one after reading what I'm finding online about this now...if nothing else, I'd be concerned about the financial impact involved. The more you dig, the more you find out how RPTV has been passed around like a hot potato... which isn't exactly a good selling point for the brand.
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post #26 of 466 Old 01-01-2004, 08:13 AM
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For those that may have an inside scoop with ReplayTV, can you please explain the logic of this statement within the Official Press release dated
December 22, 2003
http://www.digitalnetworksna.com/com...ess.asp?ID=598
Quote:
ReplayTV 5500 Series customers who have already purchased 3-year subscriptions to the ReplayTV Service under the previous pricing model will have their services automatically extended for the lifetime of the product at no additional charge.
Would'nt it have been better for Replay not to make these statements at this given time when they found themselves in serious limbo with many of the green sticker three year service boxes being sold at $149?
This seems that it only added to the confusion along with administering further damages to themselves only to deal with at a later time.

Mod's
Feel free to delete this post if it is felt OT,
I have not read any viewpoints to this particular point of the press release anywhere here at AVS or other forums.
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post #27 of 466 Old 01-01-2004, 08:24 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Diode1
Would'nt it have been better for Replay not to make these statements at this given time when they found themselves in serious limbo with many of the green sticker three year service boxes being sold at $149?
This seems that it only added to the confusion along with administering further damages to themselves only to deal with at a later time.
I mentioned that in my post earlier. yeah, it is a serious problem for rptv as they don't know how the whole thing would shape out to be. If they are obligated to provide free 3-yr services to those $149 units, it stands to argue that all those units will have to be upgraded to free life-time subscription.

I speculated that the press release was pre-drafted and probably was reviewed by the legal department without knowing the whole fiasco. After it broke, no one from the legal department reviewed the document before its final release.

That may have contributed to rptv's hardened position on this because they realized now that the loss, if they gave into the $149 unit owners, would be that much bigger because of the automatic conversion.
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post #28 of 466 Old 01-01-2004, 08:43 AM
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Thanks millwood
This just proves a point, read the thread not once but twice prior to posting anything. duh..
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post #29 of 466 Old 01-01-2004, 09:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by millwood

I mentioned that in my post earlier. yeah, it is a serious problem for rptv as they don't know how the whole thing would shape out to be. If they are obligated to provide free 3-yr services to those $149 units, it stands to argue that all those units will have to be upgraded to free life-time subscription.
I think you may be missing the point. There isn't going to be any such thing as three years of built-in service anymore. It doesn't matter if it's an old box for $499 or a new box for $150. DNNA obviously realized it was going to be too much of a headache to support the 3-year pricing structure. If DNNA ultimately caves, everyone will without a doubt be getting free lifetime service.
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post #30 of 466 Old 01-01-2004, 09:59 AM
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How many ReplayTVs were sold at $149 with 3 years activation?

It seems that thousands were sold. Any news to the exact number?
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Closed Thread ReplayTV & Showstopper PVRs

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