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Discussion Starter · #1 ·

As a cord cutter, I tend to watch movies far more often than television. However, the buzz around HBO's detective drama True Detective was really positive, so I figured the show was worth a shot. Last night, I fired up my Samsung Galaxy tablet and launched HBO Go, intending to watch the season finale. My wife and I had glasses of wine after finishing a delicious dinner, and we were ready to stream the finale on our Chromecast player.

 



Image from washingtonpost.com

 

Unfortunately, the HBO Go app froze on launch. I instantly blamed some combination of Comcast, Samsung, and Google, but there was no issue with any other apps on my tablet, and my Internet connection was as fast as ever. That's when I realized that True Detective's popularity overwhelmed HBO Go.

 
Quote:
"It didn’t take long for the series based on Robert W. Chambers’ “ King in Yellow ” to build up a huge, loyal following. So big, in fact, that HBO GO live stream servers crashed during the season finale Sunday night. HBO Go is an app that lets users stream on their phones, tablets and computers. While we know that  high volume  caused HBO Go’s servers to crash, there are no publicly-available metrics on the ratio of users-per-HBO Go accounts. That didn’t stop  people  from speculating that this was the network’s plan all along." source: washingtonpost.com
 

This morning, the True Detective crash made the news. What does it mean when a show brings down HBO's cloud service? Is it a sign that streaming has truly come of age? Netflix already struggles to stream 1080p during peak hours and recently started paying for the privilege. Of course, many HBO viewers had the option to watch the show on cable, but the fact that people chose to stream instead is what I find most interesting—aside from the fact that its popularity prevented me from watching the show.

 

Did you experience the HBO Go/True Detective crash last night? Was this a watershed moment for online delivery of content, or just a ploy to get people to subscribe to HBO?

 



 

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^^^Noticed lots of brief freezes on my FIOS service the last few days, including my DVRed copy of the True Detective final during playback this morning. AIUI, most of these were due to the periodic alignment of satellites with the sun; it messes up TV distribution. Not sure whether this is somehow related to HBO onllne or via mobile apps. -- John


EDIT: Checked the 'news' mentioned, which makes it clear the freeze was both a bandwidth and separate solar interference problem. Still getting (3/11) brief but regular interference freezes on channels here via FIOS; understand the spring/fall satellite glitches are about two weeks each.
 

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I'm also a cord cutter, and I love this show.



We were a week behind, and, on the second attempt, were able to watch Episode 7 on our AppleTV without any issues or buffering. But when we clicked to watch the finale, we weren't able to get anything to play.
 

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I had my DVR set to record TD at 3AM Monday morning because we were recording two other shows during the Sunday prime time and watching another show we had recorded days ago. Sometime between 9:30-10:30, while TD was being shown for the first time Sunday evening, as we watched, the TV screen froze, the DVR flashed 88888 and blinked other lights on and off, and shut down.


We did our normal response, nothing, while the DVR blinked a light here or there, then flashed dU1, then slowly came back to life. Our recordings picked up with a notification they had been interrupted. No streaming was involved, but quite a coincidence.
 

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It worked for me around 2am or so. I gave up on the Xbox HBO Go app which didn't even attempt to work. The HBO Go app on my Samsung smart tv at least showed the loading/buffering ring before crashing, until later that night when I assume traffic died down and it played flawlessly


Of course there are those who will think HBO did this on purpose, but who knows
 

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A coworker of mine couldn't watch the show due to the HBO Go crash.

My hard wired connection to Comcast through my TiVo had no issues of course.

Does this just point out that streaming is still not all it is cracked up to be?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·

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Originally Posted by JSKMDWK  /t/1521871/true-detective-season-finale-crashes-hbo-go#post_24465616


A coworker of mine couldn't watch the show due to the HBO Go crash.

My hard wired connection to Comcast through my TiVo had no issues of course.
Does this just point out that streaming is still not all it is cracked up to be?
It shows that streaming services can be overwhelmed if it's a scheduled show—a premier or a live event—that draws more viewers than anticipated. Regular broadcasts don't suffer from network congestion, streaming does. However, it's more of a bandwidth allocation issue than a specific limitation of the medium. HBO should have had a handle on it, which is likely why conspiracy theories exist that the crash was intentional. My guess is HBO (and others) will do what it takes to avoid a similar situation going forward. 
 

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Heard nothing but great things about the show. Really looking forward to checking it out when it's released on Blu-ray. Buying discs is the primary way I've watched TV for so many years now, I don't see that changing anytime soon. Nor do I want it to.
 

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I'm in oz, I thought you needed a cable account to use the app, so are cable cutters using family & friend account? Or is there a way to join as stream only?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by matthewa  /t/1521871/true-detective-season-finale-crashes-hbo-go#post_24467116


I'm in oz, I thought you needed a cable account to use the app, so are cable cutters using family & friend account? Or is there a way to join as stream only?
 

Comcast does offer an internet plan that includes HBO Go but many people are borrowing passwords.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic  /t/1521871/true-detective-season-finale-crashes-hbo-go#post_24467164


Comcast does offer an internet plan that includes HBO Go but many people are borrowing passwords.

And it should be noted that HBO has gone on record as saying that at this point they do not intend to crack down on sharing of login information, as they hope it will increase subscriptions.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by thrillcat  /t/1521871/true-detective-season-finale-crashes-hbo-go/0_50#post_24467435


And it should be noted that HBO has gone on record as saying that at this point they do not intend to crack down on sharing of login information, as they hope it will increase subscriptions.
Really, well I'd like to borrow a login if anyone is feeling generous please PM, interested to see what the quality is like
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by matthewa  /t/1521871/true-detective-season-finale-crashes-hbo-go#post_24469126


Really, well I'd like to borrow a login if anyone is feeling generous please PM, interested to see what the quality is like






Toss me one over here too




Djoel
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by matthewa  /t/1521871/true-detective-season-finale-crashes-hbo-go#post_24467116


I'm in oz, I thought you needed a cable account to use the app, so are cable cutters using family & friend account? Or is there a way to join as stream only?
AFAIK - you need an account. We have an account at our home in Miami - but watched it on our big screen in Oakland via streaming via Chromecast. I guess having a friend w. an account would work - you'd have to get their Comcast PW to first set up the app on your phone, tablet etc. Netflix advertises you can have an extra family member on your account. I don't know how these services regulate/limit extra people from using one account.

Of course you can't use these services outside the country - unless, maybe, via a virtual U.S. IP. I
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by matthewa  /t/1521871/true-detective-season-finale-crashes-hbo-go#post_24469126


Really, well I'd like to borrow a login if anyone is feeling generous please PM, interested to see what the quality is like
I can't see a stranger doing this. At least if your HBO is via Comcast, the PW you use is your Comcast PW - which means anyone w. that PW could mess with your account.
 
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