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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does it bother anyone else here that the $250 subscription on the 4500 series is per unit, as opposed to the TIVO per household subscription? I was really anticipating it being a "one fee covers all" proposition, but now I'm having to rethink my plans to purchase two or three 4500's. It also didn't help that they are trying to lock down the MPEGs so that ReplayPC doesn't work any more.


Sorry if this has already been flogged to death, but I've been off line for a week - I scanned the last couple of day's topics and didn't see this one mentioned.
 

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It's NOT a subscription. Merely a way to make it easier to sell through a retailer. Instead of $700, it's $450 and $250. It's not a subscription. It's not a subscription :)


It's required for each unit, and follows the unit for the life of the unit. It's not a subscription. :)


Perhaps when they instate a monthly fee option in 6-12 months, they'll offer a reduced rate for multiple units. I doubt it though!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Scyber, I thought that one of the big arguments for TIVO was the single lifetime subscription. In fact, wasn't there a prominent contributor here that went to DirecTivo six months or so ago because the single subscription lowered his per unit outlay to a trivial level?


If I'm wrong, I appologize, but I sure remember it being discussed.


RandyL, OK, so they don't call it a subscription. A fee is a fee is a fee. TIVO charges a fee for the same service, and they call it a subscription. Feathers, bill, webbed feet, goes "quack" - DUCK! Semantics may be important to you, but basically it's a cost for a service. TIVO subscribes a household, SonicBlue subscribes a unit. Either way, SB's solution costs _me_ a ton more money.


Couple more money with the possibility that I won't be able to pull shows off, and I'm basically back to just comparing program guides and the benefits of Commercial Advance vs 2 Tuners to decide between the units. Frankly, I'm not sure that CA is worth the pretty fat stack of cash under those conditions (remember, I'm talking about 2 or 3 units).


As I said above, I'm just wondering if anyone else is bothered by it.
 

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DirecTiVo integrated DirecTv receivers have a $250 service price for all units on a single DirecTv account. Stand alone TiVo receivers have a fee that is per unit. Sonic Blue's price structure is the same as TiVo's, except that TiVo currently also offers monthly pricing.


DirecTiVo receivers do have two tuners, do not require separate DirecTv receivers (an added cost of stand alone units if one does not already have them), and record DirecTv's digital stream directly without decoding/re-encoding (better quality at a lower bit rate). All this does come at a cost: one must be a DirecTv subscriber. If one is, then they are a great deal. Right now, however, these units are not as cheap as they have been for existing DirecTv subscribers (still cheaper than 40 hour RePlayTV units with the service fee). In a few months, when Series II DirecTiVo receivers are available, I expect that the prices will return to the $150 level or so (that is if DirecTv subsidizes them again).


/carmi
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Sorry for not being clear, Scyber. I already have 2 Showstoppers for OTA if I decide to go the DirecTivo route. But I would really prefer the additional capabilities that the 4000 has.


The more I learn about the 4500 series, the more turned off I am getting. The lockdown of the video transfer is really just the last straw, should they be successful in thwarting the hackers (note: that's intended to be the good use of the word, not the perverted media usage).


I hope that my impression is wrong, or that SB will shift direction a bit. As it stands, they just want too much money to make a multiple unit purchase worth my while. Hasn't anyone told them that hardware component prices are dropping?
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by scochran666


I hope that my impression is wrong, or that SB will shift direction a bit. As it stands, they just want too much money to make a multiple unit purchase worth my while. Hasn't anyone told them that hardware component prices are dropping?
Their whole pricing model clearly disregards the factor of hardware pricing -- 4040 -> $700 4320 -> $2000

$1300 difference for a 280mb storage (160G hd + upgrade 40G -> 160G hd)


While this might play for folks who don't know the only difference is is $300-400 more in HD storage, it won't for the tech savvy. This is a problem when their chief client base currently is that group. Currently folks have been working around this out of touch pricing scheme by upgrading themselves and using SwapDV and ReplayPC. If all these options are locked down, most of the justification except for CA and religion are gone IMHO and my next unit might well be a TiVo.

->Dave
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by KenL
The larger ones are just for the convenience of the "more dollars than sense" types, right toots? :D:D
In other words, they gouge you for the large size.


/carmi
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by scochran666
RandyL, OK, so they don't call it a subscription. A fee is a fee is a fee. TIVO charges a fee for the same service, and they call it a subscription. Feathers, bill, webbed feet, goes "quack" - DUCK!
Someone mentioned my name? :)


I got into a thread on this recently... it is odd. Tivo is very clear - you *subscribe* to the Tivo EPG *service*. RPTV insist on calling it an 'activation fee' on the 45XX - the RPTV EPG service is still 'free for life' but RPTV charge you $250 to *do some work on your unit* - to activate it.


This begs the question: what if someone else could do the work (i.e. activate the unit) cheaper? Would you have RPTV activate the unit, or go with Brand 'X'? It IS a free market... interesting decision by RPTV, to call it a 'fee' for activation, not a subscription, the more I think about it the more implications it has.


For instance, let's look six months ahead. Imagine RPTV are also offering a monthly payment option by then. You buy a 4532. You use it for say a year, then some other PVR hits the market with features that blow RPTV out of the water. You buy one and cancel your monthy payments to RPTV - you're never going to use the 4532 again, except to watch the 320 hours of programming you have recorded on it. Woops, no you're not. Things may change, but at the moment if your 45XX isn't activated it's a doorstop - if they don't make significant changes to the system you are going to have to *keep paying the monthy charge* just to *watch* stuff you already have recorded.


People don't like this. ReplayTV goes bust. What happens to all the other 45XX units on monthly payments? Do they stay 'activated'?


I don't like these 'conditional access to your own hardware and programming' features that seem to be creeping into the PVR world - I understand some recent Tivo units are just as bad in this respect. Getting all too close to the game plan of the 'enemy' - 'you wanna keep watching, you gotta keep paying us'.


How long is it going to be before the real open-source guys get into this game - producing a true hacker-friendly open-source 'sells for a straight profit on the hardware' PVR, and a distributed, free, Gnutella/Grokster/UNameIt - style EPG for it to connect to? That, I submit, should be our real aim. Apart from anything else, trying to sue open-source is like trying to nail soup to the wall - It'll be all over the room within five minutes of the attempt :)


Mike, stirring as usual :)
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by majortom



In other words, they gouge you for the large size.


/carmi
Guess you might consider that gouging if it's way out of your price range? Still you have the option of whichever size meets your individual needs. There are the smaller models for those with vows of poverty. ;)


Now personally however I feel more gouged by all the generally non-optional surprises from TiVo. :confused:
 

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I suppose if you don't want your box to ever talk to ReplayTV servers, you could go without ReplayTV's activation. I mean, you bought a piece of hardware for $450. Do with it what you will, within the law. Connecting to ReplayTV's servers without paying THEIR activation fee is theft. Plain and simple. Creating your own program to activate and provide EPG from your own source? Might be perfectly fine. (But worth $250? I'd rather pay the fee and have it done for me :))
 

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But RandyL712! IT WON'T WORK without activation! You can't use it for ANYTHING! It isn't about subscribing to their listings! The box won't record anything, even manually, without activating it. You can hardly even watch TV THRU it!


The activation is an INTEGRAL part of the stinking original equipment. Without it, it doesn't even make a good doorstop.
 

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It is my understanding that if the TIVO box doesn't phone home for a period of time (30 days had been mentioned) the "lifetime subscription" is toast. Any confirmation/rebuttal would be welcome.
 

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I haven't posted in a while, but I must say the pricing model STINKS.


I was waiting for the 4500's to come out and the pricing ends up being the same after the "activation fee".


So.. I'm not going to buy one.


I have a showstopper HS2000 upgraded to 100hrs. And I have a DirecTivo.


It feels like a slap in the face to hear that the pricing will be cheaper for the 4500's .. but in reality it is not. :(
 

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Where and when did SB / RTV say that the 4500 would be cheaper than 4000? It's the same box, just designed for retail sales.


I've heard that other models are in development, units much cheaper and units much more expensive. I never heard that 4500 was either of those.
 

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 http://www.replaytv.com/company/press.asp?ID=525


"SONICblue’s new DVR product will offer many of the leadership features of the Company’s ReplayTV 4000 and is planned to be priced below any existing DVR currently on the market. SONICblue will also continue to launch products targeting the high-end DVR market where it has established itself as the technology leader."


Hmm...TiVo Series 2 60 Hour: $399.99 (not incl subscription)

Replay 40 hour: $449.99 (not incl activation)


Hmmm...so I get less hours and pay $50 more? That doesn't seem lower to me.


And, keep in mind, I'm a Replay fan ;)
 
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