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post #1051 of 2087 Old 01-20-2016, 07:37 PM
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I got the X1 non DVR box, a Samsung XG2 or something like that. I like it a lot BUT it wont do native resolution, and most of the old legacy outputs are gone. It also has no front display at all, just a blue vertical light on the right side so you know when it's on. I also have a few cable card devices and my local office claimed X1 conflicts with cable cards so when I went to trade in my DCH-3200 box they gave me a cut down box that now support MPG4 but still used the old guide and system.
I was sent a free X1 upgrade card in the mail that said I could order online or in store so I ordered online and they sent it to me with a free self install.
My cable card stuff still works fine and so does the new box so the conflict story isn't true. I did unplug the coax at both devices till the upgrade activated just in case but doubt it was necessary. It does have a SD card buried somewhere that allows it to pause or record a bit of live TV which is handy, and some popular shows and movies allow you to start from the beginning which is great if you find something halfway through that you really wanted to watch all of it. The new guide looks like Plex, Kodi, or probably Tivo and is really nice looking with all the pics and info.
I should probably do that 30 second skip feature as it'd be great for commercials when the show allows it, and if anyone finds a way to make X1 do native resolution someday that would be great also even though so far the picture looks really good at 1080i.
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post #1052 of 2087 Old 01-21-2016, 09:55 AM
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Originally Posted by PaulGo View Post
You can program a 30 second skip into the X1 box (instead of five minutes) via the remote. You are actually putting the code in the box instead of the remote.
Where can I find instructions on how to modify the skip length?

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post #1053 of 2087 Old 01-21-2016, 10:08 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by klh007 View Post
Where can I find instructions on how to modify the skip length?
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At any rate, here is the quick, two-step process:
Step 1: Press the Exit button three times
Step 2: Press 0030
Now, when you use your remote, you'll find that the page up button, which previous skipped ahead five minutes, now skips ahead 30 seconds. And the page down button now skips back 15 seconds, even though the Replay button near the top of the remote also skips back 15 seconds.
http://www.cnet.com/how-to/how-to-pr...or-xfinity-x1/
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post #1054 of 2087 Old 01-21-2016, 10:12 AM - Thread Starter
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If your set is capable of 1080p choose that setting. The X1 box does an excellent job of up-scaling all content to 1080p.
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post #1055 of 2087 Old 01-21-2016, 02:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Dartman View Post
I should probably do that 30 second skip feature as it'd be great for commercials when the show allows it, and if anyone finds a way to make X1 do native resolution someday that would be great also even though so far the picture looks really good at 1080i.
I doubt it. The few people who care about native mode, like me, already have TiVos.
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post #1056 of 2087 Old 01-21-2016, 05:26 PM
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I doubt it. The few people who care about native mode, like me, already have TiVos.
I've thought about a TiVo but I like my HD HomeRun Prime and I can easily add extra drives and edit and move almost anything it captures for me and it costs me nothing extra to continue to use.
The monthly or lifetime sub always stops me, don't have the extra cash around like I used too.
I may jump in someday if a smoking deal on a box and lifetime comes up but everything I have now is paid for and just continues to work. I also don't like the idea if the TiVo box dies your Sol on your lifetime I guess.
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post #1057 of 2087 Old 01-25-2016, 02:14 PM
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I've thought about a TiVo but I like my HD HomeRun Prime and I can easily add extra drives and edit and move almost anything it captures for me and it costs me nothing extra to continue to use.
The monthly or lifetime sub always stops me, don't have the extra cash around like I used too.
I may jump in someday if a smoking deal on a box and lifetime comes up but everything I have now is paid for and just continues to work. I also don't like the idea if the TiVo box dies your Sol on your lifetime I guess.
Well, my point exactly, you're still not using X1. The Lifetime now for new TiVo subs is crazy expensive. I have a box with Lifetime, I may call them up and try to get an existing subscriber deal on a new one at some point. The $600 Lifetime is tough to swallow when the box comes with a year, and they are $150/year after that. It was a no-brainer when it was $500 for Lifetime, with no service included, and service at $15/mo.

The single reason that I've held back somewhat is that DirecTV is clearly the superior TV service, so at some point, I might actually give up my TiVo for DirecTV's service. If they supported TiVo in a meaningful way, I would already be with them.
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post #1058 of 2087 Old 01-25-2016, 02:34 PM
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Well, my point exactly, you're still not using X1. The Lifetime now for new TiVo subs is crazy expensive. I have a box with Lifetime, I may call them up and try to get an existing subscriber deal on a new one at some point. The $600 Lifetime is tough to swallow when the box comes with a year, and they are $150/year after that. It was a no-brainer when it was $500 for Lifetime, with no service included, and service at $15/mo.
.
Being a condo owner - satellite is not an option. I never could understand why TiVo makes economic sense. Comcast charges $15 a month to rent their box, maybe it's now a couple dollars more. With TiVo you have to pay the $15 plus buy the box. And since technology is constantly changing at some point your TiVo box will be obsolete, so you'll have to buy a new one.
I would like a box that would allow easy recording of any video stream that I am sending to the big screen. The past couple years more and more of our TV viewing is by streaming. I like the ability to pause and fast forward. Example: I can start watching the sporting an hour after it starts and be caught up by the end of the game. Other programs I like to watch on my own time. It's worth $15 or even $20 a month to have those features.
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post #1059 of 2087 Old 01-25-2016, 03:37 PM
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Being a condo owner - satellite is not an option.
Says who?
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post #1060 of 2087 Old 01-25-2016, 04:08 PM
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Says the law of physics. We can see due West, North, and East. We cannot see South. Besides, the condo association has a killer deal with Comcast where everyone gets most of the channels including HBO, SHO, etc. we only have to pay for the box. Also have to pay for Internet.
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post #1061 of 2087 Old 01-25-2016, 10:20 PM
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Being a condo owner - satellite is not an option. I never could understand why TiVo makes economic sense. Comcast charges $15 a month to rent their box, maybe it's now a couple dollars more. With TiVo you have to pay the $15 plus buy the box. And since technology is constantly changing at some point your TiVo box will be obsolete, so you'll have to buy a new one.
Our Condo Association is a bit more lax but the board wants approval on location of the satellite dishes.

When in October 2012 Comcast dropped the analog channels (so no more time shifting with a pair of VCRs with a third VCR for viewing the cassettes), the prices I remember were $17/mo for HD DVR rental from Comcast and $15/mo for the Tivo service with required up-front purchase of the Tivo.

The $2 difference in monthly cost and huge difference in up-front costs ($0 in my case for renting the HD-DVR vs. $$$ for the purchase price of a Tivo) made the decision easy for me. Plus, when things break, it is nice being able to contact just one vendor instead of having two vendors doing finger-pointing.

With my luck, I would have probably purchased a Tivo that didn't know how to handle MPEG4, which, a mere 3 years later, is being phased in in my area, whereas the HD-DVR I am renting from Comcast had MPEG4 support from the time I picked it up from the Xfinity store, and even if it didn't support MPEG4 it would have been an equipment exchange instead of a significant equipment repurchase.
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post #1062 of 2087 Old 01-27-2016, 11:06 AM - Thread Starter
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How The FCC Hopes To Make Set-Top Boxes More Affordable

By Chris Morran January 27, 2016
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As expected, FCC Chair Tom Wheeler has proposed new rules intended to make the set-top box market more competitive and offer consumers more choices. Now we have some details on how he hopes to actually accomplish this goal. U.S. pay-TV customers pay around $20 billion a year in “lease” or “rental” fees for set-top boxes provided by their cable or satellite companies. Prices for these devices have nearly doubled over the last two decades while prices for similarly innovative electronics have dropped significantly during the same time period.
Wheeler believes that it will help consumers if more companies can offer devices and apps that compete directly with those being provided by the cable operators. The hope is that the competition will also spur innovation so that pay-TV companies will have to provide customers with new and unique features in order to keep them from going elsewhere. Likewise, no one will be forced to give up their current cable boxes. If they’re happy with what they have, they just keep on paying the cable companies for them.
The big question is whether the increased competition will drive the price down. Manufacturers like TiVO have been making third-party DVRs that can replace some set-top boxes, but they can still be quite pricey.
The only way that cable companies will reduce their rental fees is if device makers come out with less expensive boxes that people actually want to buy. That brings up another issue: Even if a box is relatively affordable, at say $100, will people be okay with paying that amount upfront or will they choose to keep paying $7 a month to avoid the larger, immediate out-of-pocket expense? Only time will tell.
So how are all these potential new manufacturers going to make sure they are building boxes that work? The proposal would ask the pay-TV companies to make sure that competing device and app manufacturers can get programming information (channel and program listings, on-demand offerings), clarification on what a set-top box should be able to do with the content it receives (can it record shows? can it broadcast recorded content online to the customer?), and obviously the video programming itself.
Rather than have the FCC determine the standards for sharing this information, Wheeler would have them put together by an independent standards body that meets a handful of conditions, including openness in membership and a balance of interests. That is, it can’t just be a few cable companies or manufacturers making decisions that are ultimately best for them.
In terms of security, Wheeler proposes allowing cable companies to maintain the proprietary systems they have developed to protect against theft and piracy. However, the proposal would require that they offer at least one content protection system to competing device makers that is openly licensed on reasonable and non-discriminatory terms.



http://consumerist.com/2016/01/27/ho...re-affordable/
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post #1063 of 2087 Old 01-27-2016, 02:05 PM
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Originally Posted by snidely View Post
Being a condo owner - satellite is not an option. I never could understand why TiVo makes economic sense. Comcast charges $15 a month to rent their box, maybe it's now a couple dollars more. With TiVo you have to pay the $15 plus buy the box. And since technology is constantly changing at some point your TiVo box will be obsolete, so you'll have to buy a new one.
Well actually, with Comcast, TiVo was significantly cheaper up until Lifetime got more expensive a few months ago. TiVo WAS $400 and then $500 for Lifetime, and $150 for the Minis with no monthly fees. Comcast charges $20/mo for the first X1, and $10/mo for each additional box for an inferior product. I haven't done the math out with the current pricing scheme, but because the extra boxes are a one-time cost on TiVo, TiVo will absolutely be cheaper if you have a bunch of TVs, probably not if you only have one.

Of course there's also the reality that X1 is just an inferior product to TiVo, and TiVo would be worth extra money if it actually cost more.

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I would like a box that would allow easy recording of any video stream that I am sending to the big screen. The past couple years more and more of our TV viewing is by streaming. I like the ability to pause and fast forward. Example: I can start watching the sporting an hour after it starts and be caught up by the end of the game. Other programs I like to watch on my own time. It's worth $15 or even $20 a month to have those features.
Or you could just watch it on TV. If it's Netflix or Amazon or whatever, then it's pausable to you heart's content anyway.
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post #1064 of 2087 Old 02-02-2016, 10:21 AM - Thread Starter
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Comcast Reveals First D3.1 Gigabit Cities

With limited information on timing, and zero information on price, Comcast announced its first five cities targeted for DOCSIS 3.1 deployments today. Atlanta and Nashville will see gigabit broadband service powered by D3.1 tech in "early 2016," with Chicago, Detroit and Miami following in the latter half of the year.


The big advantage of DOCSIS 3.1 is that it allows operators to launch gigabit services over their existing cable networks. Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) has been the most aggressive in the US with the technology, although the fact that that company is only announcing five cities so far for all of 2016 suggests that it won't catch up to telco rival AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) any time soon. Google Fiber Inc. has also announced a ramp-up in gigabit city deployments planned for this year, which should add to the pressure on Comcast and other cable providers.

Comcast previously launched a multi-gigabit broadband service, Gigabit Pro, delivered over fiber-to-the-home networks. That offering, however, is prohibitively priced at $300 per month. In comparison, Google Fiber typically offers gigabit service for $70 per month, while AT&T's monthly fee tends to range between $70 and $100 for its gigabit broadband tier.

On the DOCSIS 3.1 front, Liberty Global Inc. (Nasdaq: LBTY) and Videotron Ltd. are among those operators also expected to announce their first deployments of the cable technology in 2016. Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. announced this week that it's partnering with TDC Group to begin D3.1 rollouts across Denmark sometime this summer.

There is no word yet on which vendors Comcast is using for its first DOCSIS 3.1 cities. However, a Comcast Xfinity-branded D3.1 modem by Technicolor (Euronext Paris: TCH; NYSE: TCH) made the rounds at a CableLabs interop event last fall.

http://www.lightreading.com/cable/do...d/d-id/720796?
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post #1065 of 2087 Old 02-18-2016, 10:18 AM - Thread Starter
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FCC Votes To Increase Competition For Set-Top Box Market

By Kate Cox February 18, 2016
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The FCC voted today to consider chairman Tom Wheeler’s new proposal for shaking up the set-top box market by, well, creating an actual competitive market that consumers have the option to use. In their monthly open meeting this morning, the commission voted 3-2 along its usual lines to adopt the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) formally called “Expanding Consumers’ Video Navigation Choices; Commercial Availability of Navigation Devices.” Commissioners Jessica Rosenworcel and Mignon Clyburn voted with Wheeler to approve the proposal; commissioners Ajit Pai and Michael O’Reilly voted against.

As we’ve explained previously, the NPRM asks pay-TV companies to make sure that competing manufacturers can receive programming information (like channel guides and on-demand content), asks them to make their video content available to those manufacturers, and seeks clarification on what a set-top box needs to be able to do with content it receives.

The gist is that if the proposal does lead to a new rule, that instead of having to pay Comcast an extra $12 per month just for the ability to get TV signals to your living room, you’d be able to run “Comcast programming” on something like your Xbox, Roku, Apple TV, or dozens of other possible or existing devices.
As is usual, each of the commissioners delivered remarks about the proposal before the commission took a vote.

Commisioner Clyburn recalled the last attempt made to open up the box market, the largely-failed CableCARD. Because this NPRM puts forward a plan to have an independent body make a standard, instead of setting its own rigid standard, it should meet with more success, she intimated.

“While prior Commission attempts in this area have been less than successful,” said Clyburn, “standardization and technological advancements have made it easier to introduce competition and innovation in this set-top market.”

She added, “Today’s [proceeding] seeks to give consumers more control in how they access video services and attempts to promote innovation in the display, selection, and use of this programming. In short, choice.”

Clyburn, and others, also pointed to the statistics at the heart of the matter: that 99% of pay-TV customers currently rent a box from their provider, that those rental rates have risen significantly faster than inflation, and that the total bill comes to a whopping $20 billion annually nationwide.

Commissioner Rosenworcel leaned on the competition angle, meanwhile. “Here’s an experiment,” she began. “You can do it at home. Just sit in your favorite comfortable chair — you know, the one in front of the television. In one hand hold the remote control for your set-top box. In the other, hold your mobile phone. Now ask yourself: which of these two devices has changed substantially over the last two decades? Which has seen extraordinary innovation? And which has benefited from competition?”

The answer, Rosenworcel concluded, is obvious: competition is better for everyone.

Commissioner Pai sympathized with the frustrations Wheeler’s proposal expressed, saying that he has three set-top boxes in his own home and finds them “clingy and expensive” and adding that he “feels the pain” every month when the bill comes due. But, Pai continued, he sees that problem as the “product of an intrusive regulatory regime,” and sees that the best way around it is simply to eliminate the cable box.

“If you are a cable customer and you don’t want to have a set-top box, you should not be required to have one,” said Pai. “This goal is technically feasible and reflects most consumers’ preferences.”

Instead, Pai said, the NPRM being considered by the FCC would double-down on cable boxes, forcing every customer to have “an entirely new set of boxes,” just not necessarily ones provided by their cable providers.

Commissioner O’Rielly, in his remarks, claimed that as far as he is concerned, set-top boxes overall are “a relic of the past, well on their way to the fate of the video rental store,” and that for the FCC to consider the proposal at all in 2016 is foolhardy at best.

The fees that pay-TV companies charge consumers for proprietary boxes they may or may not be able to opt out of are indeed high, as we’ve seen in our bill breakdowns.
Cable companies, which make serious bank from collecting those rental fees every month, have argued that the FCC’s proposal will ruin everything. Arguments floated so far include harms to diversity, harms to competition and innovation, and ever-popular claims that prices will have to go up (as they always do anyway).

However, as Wheeler made clear in his closing remarks, the issue as he sees it is one of consumer choice. “You know, this issue really is not complex,” Wheeler said.

“Congress has explicitly instructed us to assure that there are competitive information devices, be it a box or an app. There’s no ‘one is software, one is hardware.’ The functionality is the same. The issue is whether you are forced to rent that box month after month after month, or whether you are forced to rent that app month after month after month.”

“Technology has advanced to a point where [competition] is possible without changing the functioning of the pay-TV system, its copyright protections, and its security, whether an app or a box,” he added.

Wheeler also pointed out that the FCC’s current proposal is not dissimilar to one the cable industry floated itself a few years ago.

Wheeler shared slides comparing the existing cable model and the one he proposes, and then pointed out that they are, in fact, the same slide. “There is identical service delivery” under the new proposal, said Wheeler. “There is identical entitlement authorization There is identical relaying of choice back to the cable system, and there is identical delivery of programming.”

He also dispelled the myths that have rapidly begun to swirl around the proposal. “Nothing in this item requires a second box in this home. Nothing in this item requires customers to stop using the system they have right now.”

In conclusion, Wheeler said, “This is is not complex. The law mandates it. Technology allows it. The industry at one time proposed something similar to it. And consumers deserve a break and a choice.”

All that said, the FCC is a bureaucracy and its process is, well, bureaucratic. Although the FCC has accepted the NPRM for consideration, that doesn’t actually mean anything changes in the immediate sense (or perhaps ever).

Instead, today’s proceeding it kicks off the public comment period, where anyone and everyone can write in with their opinion on the proposed rule change.

Our colleagues down the hall at consumers Union (the advocacy arm of our parent company, Consumer Reports) applauded the vote, saying, “For too long, pay-TV customers have had to shell out money month after month to lease these boxes, on top of the ever-increasing price of service. It’s time to untether the consumer from that clunky, old box. This vote is an important step toward tearing down barriers that have limited competition and innovation in this market. We will keep working with the FCC to help develop a strong, practical set of standards that will better serve consumers.”

http://consumerist.com/2016/02/18/fc...op-box-market/
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post #1066 of 2087 Old 03-14-2016, 10:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Cable Dreams of a Greater Upstream

The advent of DOCSIS 3.1 is once again raising the question of whether cable operators should extend the frequency range they use for upstream data traffic, or stick with what they've got.

Today, cable operators typically conduct upstream traffic within the spectrum range of 5MHz to 42MHz, but for many years there's been talk of extending the upper range to 85MHz (the so-called mid-split) or even 200MHz (the high-split) to gain more upstream bandwidth capacity.

From a marketing standpoint, upstream bandwidth has been cable's Achilles heel. Any operator deploying fiber to the home can advertise symmetrical broadband speeds, but cable operators using hybrid fiber-coaxial (HFC) networks are stuck right now with upstream maximums that struggle to hit the 50 Mbits/s mark. For the most part, consumers don't need higher upstream bandwidth, but marketing claims by FTTH operators can still drive demand, and there's always the possibility that the next big killer app will eat further into upstream margins.

Bob Greene, managing director of business development at Liberty Global Inc. (Nasdaq: LBTY), also sees signs that bandwidth usage trends may be changing.
"In Europe, all the operators, and specifically us, we've seen a huge increase in the upstream traffic," said Greene at Light Reading's Cable Next-Gen Technologies event. That increase, according to Greene, is led simply by the growing number of devices connecting to the Internet, and it has Liberty Global evaluating what capacity it might gain from eventually migrating to DOCSIS 3.1 in the upstream.

Casa Systems Inc. Director of Product Management Jeff Leung also confirmed that his company is getting interest from customers around upstream D3.1 trials.
"We are now seeing quite a bit of requests on the upstream as well in the US and also in Europe," said Leung. "We've been requested to get the upstream trials going on, and if you ask about the timeline, upstream is coming. It's probably going to be 2017, but trials [are] going to be this year for sure."

However, as Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) VP of Access Architecture Jorge Salinger pointed out at the same event, the level of upstream capacity possible using DOCSIS 3.1 depends entirely on how much spectrum is allocated to the cause. Extracting the full potential out of D3.1 in the upstream means deploying the mid-split or the high-split. And that can be a painful proposition.

Robert Harris was vice president of network planning & architecture for more than a dozen years at Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC), and he's well aware of the difficulties involved in extending the frequency range available for upstream bandwidth. Asked about the possibility of the industry finally moving forward with a higher split, Harris was cautious, noting that companies "may be underestimating the challenges

And there's another potential wrinkle in the debate: the industry's new investigation of Full Duplex DOCSIS 3.1. In theory if Full Duplex comes to fruition, operators will have a much broader range available for upstream bandwidth because upstream and downstream traffic will be able to share the same spectrum frequencies.

Could the potential for Full Duplex cause operators to hold off on a higher bandwidth split?
"No, I don't think so," said Salinger when the question was posed to him. "We're not sure exactly how complex it would be to implement... I don't think anybody would change their plans on not extending the upstream because of the expectation of Full Duplex."

Salinger didn't go so far as to say that Comcast is pursuing the mid-split, but that's a reasonable assumption given earlier statements and the operator's ambitious plans for DOCSIS 3.1. How quickly an implementation might happen, and whether others follow suit remains to be seen.

http://www.lightreading.com/cable/do...d/d-id/721830?
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post #1067 of 2087 Old 03-14-2016, 03:03 PM
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If Comcast can't even rebuild the upper end of all their plants, where there is an incremental upgrade path, they're definitely not going to be doing mid-split. I just don't think upstream really affects them that much anyway. There's so much more that they could do to compete with FIOS other than blowing mega-bucks going to a mid-split system.
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post #1068 of 2087 Old 03-14-2016, 09:56 PM - Thread Starter
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I think Comcast may wait for Full Duplex DOCSIS 3.1 as the preferred solution unless they can free up enough bandwidth when they transition to mpeg-4.
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post #1069 of 2087 Old 03-16-2016, 03:31 PM
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I think Comcast may wait for Full Duplex DOCSIS 3.1 as the preferred solution unless they can free up enough bandwidth when they transition to mpeg-4.
I'm not sure what they're trying to accomplish. They need to work on their video offering and incrementally continue to upgrade internet speeds. They can also continue splitting nodes and moving ever closer to the N+0 holy grail and get a bit more out of the existing system splits.
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post #1070 of 2087 Old 04-05-2016, 09:57 AM - Thread Starter
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Rovi Sues Comcast for Patent Infringement

SAN CARLOS, Calif.-- Rovi Corporation (NASDAQ: ROVI) today filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Comcast in the Eastern District of Texas, Marshall Division.
“Today, Rovi filed legal action against Comcast,” said Tom Carson, president and CEO, Rovi. “For over a decade, Comcast built its business using Rovi’s patented technology, which it licensed for a fixed term. Comcast’s decision to continue using Rovi’s pioneering technology as an unlicensed infringer is simply intolerable. After numerous attempts at negotiations, Rovi was left with no choice but to defend its intellectual property from unlicensed use. Rovi has taken this action to protect not only its patent portfolio, but also its stakeholders and licensees. While we are disappointed that Comcast remains unlicensed, we believe it needs a license to offer many of its personalized discovery features to its customers.”



In its filings today, Rovi asserts infringement by Comcast, together with its set-top box suppliers, of 14 U.S. patents that together deliver the most important features to Comcast customers. These features include, for example, the way that Comcast implements remote recording, AnyRoom® DVR and X1 search. Rovi seeks both an injunction barring continued infringement and damages to compensate it for the harm inflicted by that infringement.
Over the past quarter century, Rovi has invested over a billion dollars in research and development for its products and intellectual property to create one of the world’s largest media and entertainment patent portfolios comprised of more than 5,000 issued patents and pending applications worldwide. Today, Rovi’s intellectual property is broadly licensed throughout the North American pay-TV industry and by eight of the top 10 U.S. service providers, including the world’s largest pay-TV provider, AT&T, in addition to Time Warner Cable and Charter Communications. At the end of 2015, more than 180 million pay-TV subscribers around the world relied on the entertainment discovery experiences enabled by Rovi’s intellectual property.



Rovi has not changed its financial estimates for 2016, which were issued on February 11, 2016 and anticipated possible litigation with Comcast. Rovi’s estimates planned for legal expenses and excluded any licensing or advertising revenues from Comcast after March 31, 2016.



http://www.lightreading.com/video/vi.../d/d-id/722348
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post #1071 of 2087 Old 04-07-2016, 08:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Comcast Simplifies X1 Activations

Comcast has rolled out another wave of additions and enhancements to its X1 platform, including a new feature that aims to simplify the process for customers to verify and activate their accounts at the set-top box level.

On that front, Comcast has begun to roll out a new screen for X1 that lets customers verify by entering the last digits of the account’s primary phone number.

“This simplified verification saves customers and technicians time and alleviates thefrustration of having to enter a long account number,” Peter Nush, the company’s VP of product management, explained in this blog post.
Among the other additions, Comcast has also added a search feature that only pulls up shows that are available on-demand from networks that don’t necessarily appear on a linear, live channel. Examples of that include Angry Birds Toons and Kabillion.

Comcast has also extended its “Auto Extend” feature to more live events, now spanning the NFL, MLB, NHL, NBA, MLS NASCAR and NCAA men’s football and basketball. Auto Extend is has become the default “stop” setting for recording options on X1.

Additionally, the Comcast Labs section of X1 is now testing a “Default Guide View” component that enables subs to control and personalize the kind of content they see when pressing the Guide button of the remote. Using this test feature, customers can now use that button to select a particular guide view – such as HD Channels, Favorites, the X1 Trending guide, or the Kids guide view. Those various guide options can still be pulled up by pressing the Guide button twice.

At last check, Comcast has been deploying about 40,000 X1 boxes a day, with about 35% of its video base on the platform. The MSO expects to push that to 50% by year end.


http://www.multichannel.com/news/con...vations/403927
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post #1072 of 2087 Old 04-07-2016, 02:17 PM
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So they are hard at work re-inventing the wheel, and failing miserably at it! My 2-generation-old TiVo Premiere XL4 is still a far better DVR than their crappy X1 box.
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post #1073 of 2087 Old 04-07-2016, 05:59 PM - Thread Starter
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What features does the Tivo have that makes it superior to the X1 DVR? I have never used a Tivo so I don't know much about its features.
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post #1074 of 2087 Old 04-07-2016, 06:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulGo View Post
Comcast Simplifies X1 Activations

Comcast has rolled out another wave of additions and enhancements to its X1 platform, including a new feature that aims to simplify the process for customers to verify and activate their accounts at the set-top box level.

...

Comcast has also extended its “Auto Extend” feature to more live events, now spanning the NFL, MLB, NHL, NBA, MLS NASCAR and NCAA men’s football and basketball. Auto Extend is has become the default “stop” setting for recording options on X1.

Additionally, the Comcast Labs section of X1 is now testing a “Default Guide View” component that enables subs to control and personalize the kind of content they see when pressing the Guide button of the remote. Using this test feature, customers can now use that button to select a particular guide view – such as HD Channels, Favorites, the X1 Trending guide, or the Kids guide view. Those various guide options can still be pulled up by pressing the Guide button twice.
Thanks for this post. Very glad they've (finally) created a way to change the default GUIDE view. I was very surprised that it wasn't a feature when I switched from FiOS. X1, in my experience, is much better than FiOS (YMMV) but this always bugged me since the first thing I did was spend time creative favorites so I could skip around more easily. While it's a little thing, I'm very glad for it.

As to auto-extend, if I'm reading it right then this feature is only on select networks? I hope this shows up on more networks with time. I don't care for sports and it's annoying when a game goes long and, say, bumps Colbert later and screws up my DVR schedule. Again, a little thing.

Thanks again for posting this!


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post #1075 of 2087 Old 04-08-2016, 01:35 PM
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Quote:
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What features does the Tivo have that makes it superior to the X1 DVR? I have never used a Tivo so I don't know much about its features.
I'll give the X1 it's cool T9-esque remote, but other than that, it's just a cheap knock-off of TiVo that ends up costing more. Off the top of my head, and in no particular order:

1. The overall GUI. X1 looks like it was designed by Nokia. It's super click-heavy where it doesn't need to be. TiVo's is the best DVR interface in the world. It's not perfect, but it's almost 100% user intuitive, and it emphasizes DVR functionality, while X1 is still trying to be a cable box and a DVR and an On Demand machine. TiVo is clearly a DVR that can also be a cable box or On Demand machine or even a streamer. X1 also has some weird lag issues that seem to somehow be related to it's cloud design. TiVo is just better to use. I've used both side by side, and TiVo is just a more enjoyable experience.

2. Storage space. X1 only has 500GB, whereas even my older TiVo has 2TB, and the newer ones are 3TB.

3. The remote other than the T9-esque functionality. No one has ever made a remote as good as TiVo's.

4. Cost. TiVo is quite a bit cheaper, since you buy the hardware outright, don't have to pay monthly fees, and extra TVs are $150 one time, without recurring monthly fees.

5. Reliability. TiVo goes kinda nuts when it's internet is disrupted, but at least you can watch stuff, and it keeps recording if there is a QAM video signal but no internet for whatever reason. X1 just flakes out for no apparent reason and is super picky about signal levels, as each X1 DVR has it's own DOCSIS modem on board.

6. Flexibility. Comcast makes you have a coax jack near every TV. While Frontier/AT&T and DirecTV have MPEG-4 and have gone wireless, TiVo Minis work officially on Ethernet or Coax, and unofficially on wireless bridges and Powerline adapters, so they can be put just about anywhere with only the main DVR needing the coax/QAM signal.

7. Switchability and movability. You can switch to an overbuilder or FIOS without switching DVR systems. You can also move from one place to another and switch a different cable system, a different provider, or FIOS, and keep your recordings and OnePasses. Some TiVos can also run on OTA so there's that option too.

8. Video extraction. You can extract video to a PC from TiVo, giving you effectively unlimited amounts of storage.

9. Scalability. TiVo can be scaled up to 10 DVRs with 60 tuners and 60TB of storage if you really wanted to. Ok, no one goes that far, but if you want 4 separate DVRs, you can do that as long as you're willing to pay CableCard fees for each one. I like the centralized DVR model, but I could see a family with kids wanting a kids DVR, a living room DVR, and a man cave DVR, for example. I believe you can have up to 3 DVRs with X1, but you have to pay per month for each one, so they are crazy expensive, and you're limited to 15 tuners and 1.5TB.
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post #1076 of 2087 Old 04-08-2016, 02:19 PM - Thread Starter
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In my area you pay an outlet charge of $9.95 (less a $2.50 credit) for each cable card device. With TIVO don't you pay a monthly subscription fee?
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post #1077 of 2087 Old 04-08-2016, 02:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BiggAW View Post
4. Cost. TiVo is quite a bit cheaper, since you buy the hardware outright, don't have to pay monthly fees, and extra TVs are $150 one time, without recurring monthly fees.
Are you sure about that? When Comcast dropped the last of the analog channels where I live, I looked at Tivo but at that time Tivo required a monthly service fee or a substantial one-time service fee for use of the device. At that time the monthly fee was about two dollars under what Comcast charges for rental of a HD DVR, and that isn't considering the need of a CableCARD or shipping if the device fails to work.

My very humble setup:
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post #1078 of 2087 Old 04-08-2016, 08:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IronWaffle View Post
Thanks for this post. Very glad they've (finally) created a way to change the default GUIDE view. I was very surprised that it wasn't a feature when I switched from FiOS. X1, in my experience, is much better than FiOS (YMMV) but this always bugged me since the first thing I did was spend time creative favorites so I could skip around more easily. While it's a little thing, I'm very glad for it.

As to auto-extend, if I'm reading it right then this feature is only on select networks? I hope this shows up on more networks with time. I don't care for sports and it's annoying when a game goes long and, say, bumps Colbert later and screws up my DVR schedule. Again, a little thing.

Thanks again for posting this!
Yes PaulGo, thanks for your post, I just used the feature to lock in my "Favorites" as the default Guide view!

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post #1079 of 2087 Old 04-09-2016, 01:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulGo View Post
Comcast Simplifies X1 Activations

Additionally, the Comcast Labs section of X1 is now testing a “Default Guide View” component that enables subs to control and personalize the kind of content they see when pressing the Guide button of the remote. Using this test feature, customers can now use that button to select a particular guide view – such as HD Channels, Favorites, the X1 Trending guide, or the Kids guide view. Those various guide options can still be pulled up by pressing the Guide button twice.

At last check, Comcast has been deploying about 40,000 X1 boxes a day, with about 35% of its video base on the platform. The MSO expects to push that to 50% by year end.


http://www.multichannel.com/news/con...vations/403927
Just discovered that feature on my non DVR X1 box. I guess they listened to the few complaints about not having a permanent option to set the guide to favorites or HD or whatever. I had tried the hack but it expired after about 90 minutes so I again had to scroll to favorites while checking the guide. Its nice that they are actively adding features and testing new ideas like some of the media players I use now.
The old boxes are pretty much locked in except they always gave you the option for favorites only, or another favorite, native resolution, even if you had to go into the service menu to set it.
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post #1080 of 2087 Old 04-09-2016, 07:15 PM
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Quote:
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In my area you pay an outlet charge of $9.95 (less a $2.50 credit) for each cable card device. With TIVO don't you pay a monthly subscription fee?
You pay for each CableCard that you have. If you have a Premiere XL4, Roamio, Roamio Pro, or Bolt, you can add up to 9 TiVo Minis without any additional subscription fees, since the TiVo Minis don't have QAM tuners and borrow the tuners and CableCard from the host DVR. The TiVo Minis are $150 outright, no monthly fees.

Quote:
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Are you sure about that? When Comcast dropped the last of the analog channels where I live, I looked at Tivo but at that time Tivo required a monthly service fee or a substantial one-time service fee for use of the device. At that time the monthly fee was about two dollars under what Comcast charges for rental of a HD DVR, and that isn't considering the need of a CableCARD or shipping if the device fails to work.
Correct, you have to have Lifetime (now called all-in) service. When I got my XL4 several years back, I paid $400 for the DVR and $500 for the Lifetime sub, and I haven't paid anything since, except to buy my Minis to add to it. The cost of Lifetime keeps changing, it was astronomical recently, but it came back down a bit again.

You're not thinking it through to it's conclusion, unless you only have one TV. With Comcast, you pay $10/mo for every single TV you add. With TiVo, it's $150 once and you're done. And with TiVo, some markets avoid the HD fee on Comcast, and in any market, you get paid $2.50/mo for using your own equipment if the TiVo is the only video device on the account.

On top of that, your Minis can now run over Ethernet or MoCA, not just MoCA like Comcast's boxes, and TiVo can unofficially run over PowerLine or Wireless as well if you can get the setup working yourself. I have two Minis running over PowerLine adapters.

The only reason NOT to have TiVo is DirecTV. The only thing that would wrestle my CableCard and TiVo out of my cold, dead hands would be a SWiMLine 3 with SWiM-13 multiswitch mounted with the full tripod and lag screws to structure connected to an HR54 feeding a 4k Genie Mini.
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