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post #1501 of 18257 Old 10-10-2006, 07:37 AM
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Originally Posted by 1234 View Post

JWhip, Any word on when Fios TV will offer the professional sports packages? I know they cannot get the NFL, but I'm a huge baseball fan and I need my fix of the Padres.


The Padres appear infrequently on the MLB EI package. Their homes games are broadcast (infuriatingly almost all in HD) by Cox and they are not available to non-cable entities.

(They do show up fairly regularly on InHD2, but with that disappearing, who knows what the future will bring.)

Padres games appear on MLB EI only when the opponent broadcasts them.
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post #1502 of 18257 Old 10-10-2006, 07:37 AM
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The New Season
Can Telcos Really Survive?
Liberty Media chief: Telecoms could take big hit in cable wars
By Leslie Cauley USA Today

NEW YORK John Malone, the chairman of Liberty Media, says the coming cable-phone wars could turn out to be a bloodbath for AT&T and Verizon.

"Cable guys right now have a huge advantage," Malone told USA TODAY.

AT&T and Verizon are spending a bundle to recreate the wheel (cable TV) he says. If they're lucky, he adds, they'll wind up as the fourth provider in any given market behind the cable incumbent and satellite carriers DirecTV and EchoStar's Dish Network.

He also says cable TV, unlike the new video technology being adopted by AT&T, is "mature" and understood, meaning it has few technical bugs.

And forget about trying to launch a surprise attack on cable. AT&T and Verizon must dig trenches to get their broadband networks built, he notes.

"Cable guys know where they're coming a year in advance," Malone says, "And they are well positioned to respond."

Connected to cable

It's no surprise that Malone supports cable. He helped to create and shape the industry, primarily at Tele-Communications Inc. which was the No. 1 cable operator in 1999 when he sold it to AT&T.

But Malone, who began his career as an engineer, says that cable operators unlike phone companies "only have to make expenditures as demand shows up."

Cable operators aren't taking any chances. They're racing to add voice to their service bundles. Some of the bigger cable operators also plan to offer wireless.

AT&T and Verizon are using vastly different technical solutions to get them into the video game.

AT&T, based in San Antonio, is using IPTV, short for "Internet Protocol TV." The technology has been used successfully for years in small deployments. But nobody has ever tried to scale an IPTV system for many customers.

Standing in lines

The problem? Nobody knows how IPTV will hold up under the strain of millions of simultaneous users.

That includes AT&T, which plans to launch its IPTV product sold under the U-verse brand name to 15 to 20 markets later this year.

Verizon is running fiber-optic lines straight to the home, giving it almost unlimited speed 100 megabits per second or more and capacity. (In the digital world, capacity is directly related to "data rates," or speed.)

Malone says both plans have advantages and pitfalls.

AT&T, he notes, is saving money by running broadband over its copper phone lines, which are being upgraded with digital subscriber line technology to make them high-performance. The network is expected to top out at about 40 megabits per second.

Malone says DSL isn't sufficient to handle "heavy video," particularly high-definition television, which eats up a lot of capacity. For that reason, primarily, he thinks AT&T could find itself in a tough spot once HDTV takes off.

DSL "makes AT&T competitive against cable for high-speed data" customers, Malone says. "But it doesn't get them into video in a meaningful way."

He also says the DSL plan will force AT&T to hang on to its 100-year-old copper network, which is "expensive to maintain."

Those costs are increasing as consumers continue to dump local phone service in favor of VoIP and wireless.

Chris Rice, executive vice president of network, planning and engineering for AT&T, says its DSL technology has plenty of capacity for video. He adds that AT&T can install other equipment to effectively double the speed to 80 megabits per second if it needs to later.

"We have all the bandwidth we need," he says flatly.

Rice also doesn't think AT&T's copper network is a problem. "Maybe he just doesn't understand how phone networks operate, or are maintained," he says.

Verizon's plan also has soft spots, Malone says.

On a positive note, he says Verizon's fiber-to-the home approach "is technically superior," in that it will leave Verizon with unlimited capacity and blinding speeds.

Who needs speed?

But he also thinks a lot of that muscle isn't worth the cost.

"It's like having an American car that can go 200 miles per hour when the speed limit is 65," he says. "You can sell those cars, because people have big egos, but it really doesn't matter."

In a statement prepared for USA TODAY, Verizon said: "We firmly believe speed, capacity and rich interactive services are killer capabilities that customers will increasingly demand and will find ways to use. In the final analysis, the market will decide the outcome."

Time is another critical issue, Malone says.

If Verizon hews to its plan, it will have to rewire every customer in its territory. That could take decades.

Malone says he hopes AT&T and Verizon stick it out.

"They haven't made any meaningful dent" in the video business, he says. "But I hope they do. They're great customers."

http://www.usatoday.com/money/media/...one-usat_x.htm
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post #1503 of 18257 Old 10-10-2006, 10:18 AM
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Aside from having to run new trenches to customer's homes, the Verizon scenario isn't portrayed as being too unfavorable in this article.
AT&T's solution isn't the best and relies on a system currently in place and isn't all that dis-similar to the current cable infrastructure but the wiring is MUCH older.

When the cable companies wired every home with coax, they had to expend the costs to do it, albeit 20-30 yrs ago. No different now with the telecoms...they were going to have to spend the money somewhere along the line anyway, might as well be now.

One thing Verizon will have an advantage on is having homes wired with Fiber for tons of bandwidth where cable companies are still relying on cable for the last mile of run. They will max out and have to go the fiber route eventually...

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post #1504 of 18257 Old 10-10-2006, 12:40 PM
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I was wondering if Jwhip also could also ask about what I was told this morning by Verizon cs for Mass. They said they are in negotiations W/NESN to carry their signal in HD(they currently carry in SD). I am a little confused as to why they would carry an HD channel only in SD (or only be allowed to carry in SD by NESN).

I'm suspicious that they really have a technical issue to put NESN in their HD tier, that is, make room for it in the 800 numbered channels. I've contacted NESN to try to confirm Verizon's story, but as of yet have no reply.
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post #1505 of 18257 Old 10-10-2006, 12:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fab65 View Post

I didn't feel like reading through 50 pages of posts and the search function didn't help. Does fios (or anyone for that matter) carry hbo on demand in hd? the cs on the phone said that if an episode was broadcast in hd, then it should be available on demand in hd. I just got fios (switched from d*) and don't see it available.


I read somewhere that Verizon is moving from BPON to GPON on their fiber network. I understand that their on demand is streamed to the receiver and the GPON network will allow them to stream HD content. I believe GPON stands for Gigabyte Passive Optical Network. I guess the regular channels are not streamed at this time. I believe they expect to have GPON capabilities by end of year. If I can find a link I'll post it here.

http://www.cedmagazine.com/article/CA6357410.html
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post #1506 of 18257 Old 10-10-2006, 01:41 PM
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Originally Posted by fredfa View Post

The Padres appear infrequently on the MLB EI package. Their homes games are broadcast (infuriatingly almost all in HD) by Cox and they are not available to non-cable entities.

(They do show up fairly regularly on InHD2, but with that disappearing, who knows what the future will bring.)

Padres games appear on MLB EI only when the opponent broadcasts them.

I've had the MLB package for about 10 years. The number of games has increased each year because more and more games are being shown on RSNs.
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post #1507 of 18257 Old 10-10-2006, 01:47 PM
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Correct, 1234. Back in 2003 I believe there were only 51 Padres games on MLB EI. This year the number had grown to, as I recall, 76.
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post #1508 of 18257 Old 10-10-2006, 10:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NR68 View Post

I am a little confused as to why they would carry an HD channel only in SD.

Because channels want to be compensated twice for the same programming.

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post #1509 of 18257 Old 10-11-2006, 06:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcus Carr View Post

Because channels want to be compensated twice for the same programming.

Ah, ha! That just may explain it. I hope Verizon doesn't play those devious marketing games.
Its a great alternative to Comcast. A 100% better picture. After 3 years, I never knew my HD-TV could look this good! I can wait for the on-demand to catch up (its not close to Comcast's), but trying to get an extra $5- $10 for the sports programing teir I already pay extra for will send me right back to Comcast (which by the way has been contacting me weekly with offers since I switched).
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post #1510 of 18257 Old 10-11-2006, 07:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NR68 View Post

I was wondering if Jwhip also could also ask about what I was told this morning by Verizon cs for Mass. They said they are in negotiations W/NESN to carry their signal in HD(they currently carry in SD). I am a little confused as to why they would carry an HD channel only in SD (or only be allowed to carry in SD by NESN).

I'm suspicious that they really have a technical issue to put NESN in their HD tier, that is, make room for it in the 800 numbered channels. I've contacted NESN to try to confirm Verizon's story, but as of yet have no reply.

Bandwidth shouldn't be an issue at all. But sports blackouts might be. That was what held up the addition of HDNet to FiOS. HDNet movies went on first and it was a while before HDNet popped up.

Verizon's a little screwed up sometimes with blackouts. Instead of a blank screen, the channel disapears altogether. They botched a Nationals blackout in September when they believed the game was airing on a local channel. I guess they're new at this.
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post #1511 of 18257 Old 10-12-2006, 07:20 AM
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Bandwidth shouldn't be an issue at all. But sports blackouts might be. That was what held up the addition of HDNet to FiOS. HDNet movies went on first and it was a while before HDNet popped up

Yes I know FIOS has plenty of bandwidth. But setting up a new HD channel I still think is an issue.

When Comcast first put Red Sox & Bruins games on in HD, they used one of the INHD channels to feed the NESN telecast. It was 3 years before they dedicated an 800 channel exclusively to NESN (coincidentally just when FIOS-TV came to the area). I've asked Verizon why they can't do the same...use an existing HD channel to feed the games. But no answer.
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Originally Posted by JWhip View Post

it is my understanding that Comcast Sportsnet Philadelphia will not be offered as part of the package. Until it is in HD no less, I will not be switching.

CSN Philly will be on Verizon. Comcast can't use the "terrestrial loophole" with another terrestrial-based system.

Now, the HD feed, I'm not sure about.
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I searched but can't find any talk abou the HD DVR boxes Verizon FIOS uses for its service. So here are my questions:

What HD output setting do most people use? Meaning, 720p for a 720p tv or would 1080i for a 720p look better? I did not find anything on the scaling on this unit.

What SD output setting do most people use? Again, 480i, 480p?

Thanks in advance.
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post #1514 of 18257 Old 10-13-2006, 04:43 AM
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I spoke with several reps of Verizon's FiOS service yesterday at Digital Life in NYC. They confirmed what I was already told by Comcast that CSN-Philly will be in HD on their systems here in November at roll out. Thay also told me that it would be included in their premier package of around 180 channels which goes for either $39.95 or $34.95. They use the Motorola 6412 160 gig hard drive DVR which is $12.95 a month and the 6200 non DVR at $9.95 a month. These are alittle pricy. They are also able to stream SD content from the DVR to other boxes in the house but not HD yet. They claim that will be added in hopefuly 6 months. The firewire ports are active for archiving onto D-VHS. I was also advised to expect between 6 and 10 new HD channels in the next several months. With FiOS broadband and video service, doing a quick calculation without knowing the local and state fees, FiOS should be about $30.00 cheaper per month that Comcast is for me. THis should prove interesting. It will be great to see Comcast offer reduced prices on thier products with a level playing field due to CSN being on.
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post #1515 of 18257 Old 10-13-2006, 06:20 AM
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I also forgot to mention that NESN will be offered in HD sometime in the next several months. While FiOS has a ton of VOD, they have no HD VOD yet but are working on it.
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post #1516 of 18257 Old 10-13-2006, 06:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JWhip View Post

...THis should prove interesting. It will be great to see Comcast offer reduced prices on thier products with a level playing field due to CSN being on.

Exactly. VZ will enter markets and offer reduced pricing. Comcast will either match the lower pricing or lose subscribers. In the meantime, D* will launch two more birds in 2007. Competitive pressure is coming.

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post #1517 of 18257 Old 10-13-2006, 07:26 AM
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Originally Posted by 40xbr700_Owner View Post

I searched but can't find any talk abou the HD DVR boxes Verizon FIOS uses for its service. So here are my questions:

What HD output setting do most people use? Meaning, 720p for a 720p tv or would 1080i for a 720p look better? I did not find anything on the scaling on this unit.

What SD output setting do most people use? Again, 480i, 480p?

Thanks in advance.

It depends on your set and the combination of the STB and the set together.

Verizon uses Moto boxes which are similar to the one I have with Comcast. I have switched back and forth between 720p and 1080i but don't see much of a difference. I have a 720p set. For SD, I send a 480i signal. The deinterlacer in my set is better than the one in the box.

To access the configuration menu, have the TV on but turn the box off. The press the menu button.
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post #1518 of 18257 Old 10-13-2006, 07:51 AM
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Originally Posted by JWhip View Post

I also forgot to mention that NESN will be offered in HD sometime in the next several months. While FiOS has a ton of VOD, they have no HD VOD yet but are working on it.

Thanks for getting an answer about NESN for me JWhip.

Here in MA, Comcast has not lowered their price in the competition w/FiOS. But has added more programing to HD tier & more free content to their on-demand. There will have to be a bigger dent to their customer volume for them to actually lower prices.
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post #1519 of 18257 Old 10-13-2006, 08:33 AM
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Curious if any one saw the program on PBS last night regarding FiOS. It was quite informative.

Fibre optic cable has no loss of data over many miles, (I think up to 10 miles) while coaxial cable must be boosted every mile, due to signal loss. FiOS cable has a glass interior coating that transmits the light signal (which carries the data). Coaxial cable is copper wire that not only looses signal strength, but cannot carry nearly the amount of data that FiOS can.

Pretty much explains why Comcast (in my area anyway) has such an inferior picture than FiOS. They just strung cable...no boosting.
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post #1520 of 18257 Old 10-13-2006, 11:08 AM
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here in my township I have been shocked at how may people will drop Comcast as soon as FiOS is ready to be installed. It is a lot.
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post #1521 of 18257 Old 10-13-2006, 11:17 AM
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Now that I know NESN HD is going to be offered here in the Boston area I may be the 1st in my town when it is available which I was told early next year. I have had it with D* and can't wait to dump them
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 40xbr700_Owner View Post

I searched but can't find any talk abou the HD DVR boxes Verizon FIOS uses for its service. So here are my questions:

What HD output setting do most people use? Meaning, 720p for a 720p tv or would 1080i for a 720p look better? I did not find anything on the scaling on this unit.

What SD output setting do most people use? Again, 480i, 480p?

Thanks in advance.

For HD output I use 1080i for both of my 1080P and 760p TVs. I tried 760p but could not really tell any difference.

For the SD 4:3 override, I use 480i for a new 1080p TV and 480p for the 760p TV (that one didn't work well with 480i). I used "stretched" before but that created ghosting on the SD channels on the HD TVs.
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post #1523 of 18257 Old 10-13-2006, 08:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NR68 View Post

Curious if any one saw the program on PBS last night regarding FiOS. It was quite informative.

Fibre optic cable has no loss of data over many miles, (I think up to 10 miles) while coaxial cable must be boosted every mile, due to signal loss. FiOS cable has a glass interior coating that transmits the light signal (which carries the data). Coaxial cable is copper wire that not only looses signal strength, but cannot carry nearly the amount of data that FiOS can.

Pretty much explains why Comcast (in my area anyway) has such an inferior picture than FiOS. They just strung cable...no boosting.

Missed it! Sounds interesting.
As mentioned earlier, cable companies also use fiber, for the most part. (Both of our cable companies raised prices a couple of bucks each year for the last 5 years or so... each year citing fiber upgrades as the reason.) Typically fiber comes to the neighborhood, or group of neighborhoods, then becomes coax for the last mile or so. FiOS is fiber to your house... and that should make quite a difference. Nearly all of the problems we've had with cable over the years have been coax or amplifiers in the neighborhood.... usually taking weeks or months to get fixed.
Oh and we have a lot more amplifiers than one per mile (in the 'hood.) Seems there's a big square box about every 20 houses, in addition to pedestals every 4-5 homes.
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post #1524 of 18257 Old 10-14-2006, 07:44 PM
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Originally Posted by NR68 View Post

Thanks for getting an answer about NESN for me JWhip.

Here in MA, Comcast has not lowered their price in the competition w/FiOS. But has added more programing to HD tier & more free content to their on-demand. There will have to be a bigger dent to their customer volume for them to actually lower prices.

When Fios was offered in my town last Spring, I called Comcast and asked what they would do to keep me as a customer. (I had no intention of switching until Verizon offered NESN in HD) They immediately lowered my extended basic from $49.40 down to $29.99 and lowered my internet from $42.95 down to $29.99. If Verizon FIOS is available in your town call Comcast and take advantage of lower pricing. I will switch as soon as NESN-HD is up and running on FIOS as they will still be cheaper than Comcast.
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post #1525 of 18257 Old 10-15-2006, 04:40 AM
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When Fios was offered in my town last Spring, I called Comcast and asked what they would do to keep me as a customer. (I had no intention of switching until Verizon offered NESN in HD) They immediately lowered my extended basic from $49.40 down to $29.99 and lowered my internet from $42.95 down to $29.99. If Verizon FIOS is available in your town call Comcast and take advantage of lower pricing. I will switch as soon as NESN-HD is up and running on FIOS as they will still be cheaper than Comcast.

When they offered the lower pricing, did they say it was only for a limited number of months?

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When they offered the lower pricing, did they say it was only for a limited number of months?

Mickey

They discounted me in March and never put a time limit on it. I am still getting the discount.
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post #1527 of 18257 Old 10-15-2006, 04:38 PM
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They discounted me in March and never put a time limit on it. I am still getting the discount.

In Plano, Texas they did much the same thing. They actually called me several times after we had made the switch - begging for us to come back for a much lower rate. What I fail to understand is why Comcast didn't just up and announce a massive rate cut for everyone in an effort to undercut Verizon. It would have worked to a point. Now it's too late. Verizon's probably taken 25% of Comcast's business on my street alone. (of course now it's Time Warner) While that's by no means a definitive look at how the two are doing in all of Plano, it does tell you that the incumbent cable company was not well liked and was ripe for competition.
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post #1528 of 18257 Old 10-16-2006, 05:28 AM
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In Plano, Texas they did much the same thing. They actually called me several times after we had made the switch - begging for us to come back for a much lower rate. What I fail to understand is why Comcast didn't just up and announce a massive rate cut for everyone in an effort to undercut Verizon. It would have worked to a point. Now it's too late. Verizon's probably taken 25% of Comcast's business on my street alone. (of course now it's Time Warner) While that's by no means a definitive look at how the two are doing in all of Plano, it does tell you that the incumbent cable company was not well liked and was ripe for competition.

Any type of across-the-board rate decrease would cut into the cable company's earnings, which Wall Street would deal with quickly and severely. Instead, it looks like they will try to stop each Sub on their way out the door. It's clear they are banking on their Subs staying put. But if Verizon is able to get authorized in a large enough number of towns/cities/states, and then buy new Subs with low rates on bundled packages, it will definitely improve the competitive landscape.

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post #1529 of 18257 Old 10-16-2006, 08:04 PM
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Originally Posted by MickeyGee View Post

Any type of across-the-board rate decrease would cut into the cable company's earnings, which Wall Street would deal with quickly and severely. Instead, it looks like they will try to stop each Sub on their way out the door. It's clear they are banking on their Subs staying put. But if Verizon is able to get authorized in a large enough number of towns/cities/states, and then buy new Subs with low rates on bundled packages, it will definitely improve the competitive landscape.

Mickey

Oh I certainly understand the concerns of Wall Street. I would think the bigger concern for Comcast shareholders would be losing 20% of their business in a market like this. They could have helped their bottom line by cutting the rates in Plano and other Verizon areas to keep people from switching. As it is, they're making the offer after people have left. (as they did in my case) Getting those people back is next to impossible.
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post #1530 of 18257 Old 10-16-2006, 09:29 PM
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Originally Posted by arnoldevns View Post

Oh I certainly understand the concerns of Wall Street. I would think the bigger concern for Comcast shareholders would be losing 20% of their business in a market like this. They could have helped their bottom line by cutting the rates in Plano and other Verizon areas to keep people from switching. As it is, they're making the offer after people have left. (as they did in my case) Getting those people back is next to impossible.

Comcast is suppose to be loading TiVo software on their boxes. If TW did the same I would consider switching.
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