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ZatzNotFunny: Is DirecTV Sabotaging TiVo?


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19 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   sbiller1

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Posted 24 January 2012 - 05:05 AM

http://www.zatznotfu...abotaging-tivo/

...Ads Help To Support This SIte...

#2 OFFLINE   wingrider01

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Posted 24 January 2012 - 05:22 AM

http://www.zatznotfu...abotaging-tivo/


eveyone put your tin hats on for protection:lol:

#3 OFFLINE   Drew2k

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Posted 24 January 2012 - 06:54 AM

DIRECTV's receiver comparison page clearly shows the TiVo does not have the same capabilities as DIRECTV's in-house receivers, but the TiVotees who've chimed in asking for an updated HD DIRECTV-TiVo seemed to want what they had before, simply an upgrade for MPEG4, and that's what they got.

http://www.directv.c...mpare_receivers

#4 OFFLINE   Stuart Sweet

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Posted 24 January 2012 - 09:11 AM

Is it sabotage when TiVo delivers just what they said they would?
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#5 OFFLINE   CuriousMark

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Posted 24 January 2012 - 09:59 AM

DIRECTV's receiver comparison page clearly shows the TiVo does not have the same capabilities as DIRECTV's in-house receivers, but the TiVotees who've chimed in asking for an updated HD DIRECTV-TiVo seemed to want what they had before, simply an upgrade for MPEG4, and that's what they got.

http://www.directv.c...mpare_receivers


Actually I was clear that I wanted many of the standalone features that are not available. I was also nowhere near alone is wishing for them. It is also true that there is a segmet that also wanted nothing more, but I don't beleive they were a majority.

I can understand how DirecTV and TiVo got where they did. Both companies need to make the business decisiions that they believe are best for their company. DirecTV seems to want any DVR to support their ecosystem only and not have features that are not interroperable. TiVo hass non-interoperable features that could have been easily included but does not seem to want to put much effort into providing features that duplicate what they already have, but won't interroperate with their standalone and cable offerings. TiVo will do fully funded development for such things when the MSO or sat company wants to pay for it, but since such software cannot be leveraged with other customers, TiVo would want full funding for it. Or so I should expect.

So for now we have what we have, which does make many people who were waiting happy.

I am hopeful that DirecTV and TiVo will make a deal to add some more check boxes to that chart over time. I am also hopeful they do so sooner rather than later, but I won't be holding my breath.

#6 OFFLINE   alexginga

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Posted 24 January 2012 - 04:05 PM

I want to know:

Why did DirecTV insist on removing MRV feature from the unit's functionality (according to article at the beginning of the thread)?

Why did KidsZone first appears both in the interface and in the product booklet that comes with THR22, but disappears [from the box - not from the booklet] as soon as the software is upgraded?

Why would DirecTV not pay Tivo to upgrade the iPad app (to work with THR22 just as it works with / recognizes any Series3 box on the network), but paid to upgrade Tivo Desktop software to view Photos and stream Music?

Finally - WHY IS IT NOT BUILT AS A CUTTING EDGE DEVICE? Having two classes of devices (HR vs. THR) compete within DirecTV family - would only encourage innovation and improve customer satisfaction, more choices for the consumer, and likely more $$ for DirecTV)...

IMHO - the senior leadership of both companies needs to go play golf with each other and make a couple funding decisions, to make sure THR continues to evolve and eventually becomes a cutting edge device..

#7 OFFLINE   am7crew

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Posted 24 January 2012 - 06:14 PM

Well like I stated before when I called to get one, the agent tried everything to talk me out of it pointing out all its flaws and this happened with a friend of mine too so Directv definitely doesnt want you to have this box over theyre own.

#8 OFFLINE   ndole

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Posted 24 January 2012 - 06:50 PM

I want to know:

Why did DirecTV insist on removing MRV feature from the unit's functionality (according to article at the beginning of the thread)?

Why did KidsZone first appears both in the interface and in the product booklet that comes with THR22, but disappears [from the box - not from the booklet] as soon as the software is upgraded?

Why would DirecTV not pay Tivo to upgrade the iPad app (to work with THR22 just as it works with / recognizes any Series3 box on the network), but paid to upgrade Tivo Desktop software to view Photos and stream Music?

Finally - WHY IS IT NOT BUILT AS A CUTTING EDGE DEVICE? Having two classes of devices (HR vs. THR) compete within DirecTV family - would only encourage innovation and improve customer satisfaction, more choices for the consumer, and likely more $$ for DirecTV)...

IMHO - the senior leadership of both companies needs to go play golf with each other and make a couple funding decisions, to make sure THR continues to evolve and eventually becomes a cutting edge device..


!rolling

I think it's a pretty safe bet that what is currently (and finally) available is "it".
This is the outcome of their relationship, not the beginning of it.
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#9 OFFLINE   ndole

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Posted 24 January 2012 - 06:52 PM

Well like I stated before when I called to get one, the agent tried everything to talk me out of it pointing out all its flaws and this happened with a friend of mine too so Directv definitely doesnt want you to have this box over theyre own.


Or she's educated enough about it to know that it sucks by comparison.
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#10 OFFLINE   Guindalf

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Posted 25 January 2012 - 09:36 AM

People are forgetting (or unaware) that there are limitations placed on D* being a programming provider. I'm sure there is an element of marketing there too, but, as an ex-employee of a cable company, I know that there are things TiVo can do but a provider can't.

For example, the company I worked for provided the TiVo Premiere to customers that had TV and internet service. For $13.95/month, we would supply a brand new Premiere and service with all the bells and whistles that comes with it (including cablecard). As it had no contract obligations too, I thought this was an awesome deal. However, there were some drawbacks. First, it was one per customer, so no MRV, and second (a biggie), we were forced to disable Netflix streaming. This was because Starz said we couldn't have their content available for streaming as well as trying to sell the premium channels. We introduced Roku to get around this issue, but the few customers that had TiVos called to complain and we had to give them free Rokus!!

The point is, programming providers like D*, E*, cable, FioS, etc. are restricted in what they can offer, whereas TiVo themselves would not be.
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#11 OFFLINE   CuriousMark

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Posted 25 January 2012 - 12:32 PM

I want to know:

Why did DirecTV insist on removing MRV feature from the unit's functionality (according to article at the beginning of the thread)?

Your guess is as good as mine, but perhaps DirecTV simply did not want to have to support two different kinds of MRV for the two boxes that cannot work with each other. Customer support issues can get expensive so I could see those kinds of things being part of the decision process.

Why did KidsZone first appears both in the interface and in the product booklet that comes with THR22, but disappears [from the box - not from the booklet] as soon as the software is upgraded?

that is a really good question. Perhaps DirecTV didn't want a superior parental control feature in the TiVo DVR. Perhaps it wasn't working right and they didn't want to inflict bugs on the user base. Perhaps, TiVo is moving away from kidzone in favor of more traditional parental controls and decided to pull it with DirecTV's blessing. I am sure you can come up some more guesses too.

Why would DirecTV not pay Tivo to upgrade the iPad app (to work with THR22 just as it works with / recognizes any Series3 box on the network), but paid to upgrade Tivo Desktop software to view Photos and stream Music?

Probably because one was very easy and the other not so much. The iPad code was added to the series 3 code base well after they forked the direcTV version for the THR22, so backing the iPad support into it may have caused additional delays that neither company would want. On the other hand the code already supported TiVo Desktop and the only change probably needed for TiVo Desktop was to allow it to recognize a new model of DVR.

Finally - WHY IS IT NOT BUILT AS A CUTTING EDGE DEVICE? Having two classes of devices (HR vs. THR) compete within DirecTV family - would only encourage innovation and improve customer satisfaction, more choices for the consumer, and likely more $$ for DirecTV)...

IMHO - the senior leadership of both companies needs to go play golf with each other and make a couple funding decisions, to make sure THR continues to evolve and eventually becomes a cutting edge device..


In my opinion this deal was something of a kiss goodbye. I see it as an attempt to part ways in as friendly a fashion as they could. TiVo is now really a cable company subcontractor and being in bed with satellite could make it harder for them to win business from MSO cable operators. Just look at Echostar, no cable company seems interested in buying their cable box offereings since they would then be dependent on supply from a subsidiary that is wholy owned by a satellite operator. I could see TiVo wishing to avoid that.

Despite the above, there are ways DirecTV and TiVo could work to improve or replace the THR22 with something more modern. Some options I have seen bandied about on the web include adding direcTV style whole home support to the THR22. I think that would not be easy for TiVo with that code base. But if DirecTV were willing to pay for it, I suspect it could be done. Another option would be to adapter a future box TiVo is supposedly developing for a European satellite company that is supposedly based on the Premiere or Virgin boxes. If so, it would come with an HDUI, Multiroom streaming (MRS) and iPad support. It would need a lot of adapting to work with DirecTV though. So there are paths that the companies could explore. If they do so, we surely won't be privy to it.

But of course this is pure speculation, so don't bother quoting me on it. I really only know what I read here and at other sites.

Edited by CuriousMark, 25 January 2012 - 12:39 PM.


#12 OFFLINE   Stuart Sweet

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Posted 25 January 2012 - 12:56 PM

I think that the answer is simple in most cases. DIRECTV and TiVo agreed to create a device that will appeal to the people who were still using TiVo service on older SD boxes and HR10s that no longer got HD. This box is aimed squarely at that group... and if you look at it that way, it's a huge hit.

DIRECTV has several cutting-edge products and I think they serve that market very well. They were not serving the market of people who like TiVo but want HD at all.
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#13 OFFLINE   alexginga

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Posted 25 January 2012 - 04:45 PM

!rolling

I think it's a pretty safe bet that what is currently (and finally) available is "it".
This is the outcome of their relationship, not the beginning of it.


You make it sound like THR22 is a baby that was born from a one-night stand between DirecTV and Tivo..

What makes you think this is not a long-term relationship?

#14 OFFLINE   Stuart Sweet

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Posted 25 January 2012 - 05:54 PM

Actually I think he means it's already been a long relationship. 3.5 years to get what we have now... hard to know how long it would take to get something that would satisfy a true tech geek.
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#15 OFFLINE   Jerry_K

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Posted 25 January 2012 - 05:54 PM

I think that the answer is simple in most cases. DIRECTV and TiVo agreed to create a device that will appeal to the people who were still using TiVo service on older SD boxes and HR10s that no longer got HD. This box is aimed squarely at that group... and if you look at it that way, it's a huge hit.

DIRECTV has several cutting-edge products and I think they serve that market very well. They were not serving the market of people who like TiVo but want HD at all.


Absolutely true. I would have snapped up two of the THR22s so fast you would have called Einstein up from the grave to say you saw a human moving faster than the speed of light. However, without MRV it is more than USELESS.

Now I have the crippled DTV boxes. They are in no way a TiVo class product.
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#16 OFFLINE   tracicollins

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Posted 10 February 2012 - 04:49 PM

I think that the answer is simple in most cases. DIRECTV and TiVo agreed to create a device that will appeal to the people who were still using TiVo service on older SD boxes and HR10s that no longer got HD. This box is aimed squarely at that group... and if you look at it that way, it's a huge hit.

DIRECTV has several cutting-edge products and I think they serve that market very well. They were not serving the market of people who like TiVo but want HD at all.


Those of you who have been in the DirecTV environment may not be aware of how much trouble Tivo has had transitioning to the HD world. I left DirecTV six years ago and moved to cable so that I could have a Tivo Series III and more recently one of their Premieres. Tivo finally rolled out the last pieces of their HD user interface for the Premiere this month even though the machine has been on the market almost as long as Direct TV has been promising this new DirecTivo. As far as I know the second core of the much vaunted dual core CPU in the Premiere is still disabled by the Tivo software because they are unable to figure out a way to maintain system stability with two cores. Believe me, stand alone Tivos have had a really bad last three years and I think we are being unrealistic not to expect that to have impacted the features that Tivo eventually chose to include in this DirecTivo.

It would not have made sense for Tivo to include an HD user interface in the new DirecTivo when they couldn't deliver a fully functional HD user interface in the stand alone Premiere series of Tivos. Now that they are finally beginning to deliver on their long outstanding promises to the stand alone Tivo owners they might be willing to put engineers on the development of the next generation of DirecTivo. Until this year they didn't seem to have enough engineering talent to get their own products out the door let alone do anything state of the art for DirecTV.

Traci

#17 OFFLINE   CuriousMark

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Posted 13 February 2012 - 10:25 AM

As far as I know the second core of the much vaunted dual core CPU in the Premiere is still disabled by the Tivo software

According to the changelog thread I linked in the other thread, it was enabled.

Until this year they didn't seem to have enough engineering talent to get their own products out the door let alone do anything state of the art for DirecTV.


I think you may be right about that. You might want to check out the discussions of the VMED TiVo box that has been deployed in Great Britain. It was substantially ahead of the stand alone boxes and still is somewhat ahead of them. That may be where the software talent has been focused for most of this time.

#18 OFFLINE   speedy4022

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 02:33 AM

Well like I stated before when I called to get one, the agent tried everything to talk me out of it pointing out all its flaws and this happened with a friend of mine too so Directv definitely doesnt want you to have this box over theyre own.


I had a similar conversation the rep even went as far as to say I could get a discounted dvr if i took the Directv dvr instead of the Tivo. So while I don't believe in conspiracy theories it sounded like he was pushing the Directv unit over the Tivo. He also stated that he could not give me a discount on the tivo because it wasn't their unit. Did I miss something does Tivo own these units?

Edited by speedy4022, 16 February 2012 - 03:10 AM.

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#19 OFFLINE   Shades228

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 03:37 AM

I had a similar conversation the rep even went as far as to say I could get a discounted dvr if i took the Directv dvr instead of the Tivo. So while I don't believe in conspiracy theories it sounded like he was pushing the Directv unit over the Tivo. He also stated that he could not give me a discount on the tivo because it wasn't their unit. Did I miss something does Tivo own these units?


TiVo doesn't own them but their a niche product and it does cost them more in licensing fees per unit activated. Plus if you accept these units you're not going to take other units which have more options to potentially increase revenue ie WHDVR. So the deals on these receivers are less common than those that are in house software.

#20 OFFLINE   kevinturcotte

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 03:54 PM

The 2nd core was enabled on the Premiere, but it didn't bring the speed boost some people were expecting/hoping for (Which it shouldn't have brought a HUGE boost, since the HD GUI is Flash, which isn't coded to take advantage of multiple cores).




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