Originally Posted by qz3fwd
Does the Artec somehow convert the digital TVGOS data stream into the older analog TVGOS format?
During the first 18 months or so after the transition, the digital stream in Houston was not bubbly enough to get a Grid in a strictly digital world. The Artec would allow me to get one, and then I could remove it and continue to receiving listings in that Grid. So at that time the Artec would take whatever digital TVGOS I was getting and also make a perfectly happy analogue TVGOS stream for the Sony DHG. At one point this was even advertised as such on the Rovi web site to make your Sony work - but there were only a few places in the USA that it worked.
Generally during that time frame the non-bubbly-fied format prevented the normal obtainment of data bits 1, 2, and 3; with data bit 2 being the biggest offender. These bits were known as the Unknowns. Thanks Mark.
During the last year Rovi has changed the mix so that now a bubbly-fied stream is produced that the Sony DHG can now process in a strictly digital way without the use of an Artec (or other magical methods).
During this last month the bubbly-mix has been changed again (at least in Houston). And from my perspective the Sony DHG works better than ever. I have not had memory go out of balance in the last 5-6 NumSearch(s). Something it use to do all the time here. That is not to say it won't, just that it has not yet.
If you Google Rovi Sony Contract (as others have posted), there appears to be some new activity. And I think Sony has now gotten very aggressive with plans for TotalGuide (the TVGOS replacement ?). There is talk of Guide data for both cable and OTA (Yeah) as well as internet provided guide data. No mention that I see of Guide via OTA for certain. Even with all these new license powers that Sony has obtained there was a mention that Sony does not yet know what they may do with it from a market standpoint; some comment about they do not want to offend their cable company friends. UGH
IMO the world of the DVR should leave the 18th century and enter the 21st century. The technology part is easy; the legal part is not. I hope Sony can do something. They may again decide to forgo the USA market. We could be stuck in the 18th century forever.