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DirecTV going back to OTA for locals?


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141 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   mnassour

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 02:31 PM

http://www.multichan...-set-top/143326

 

 

Multichannel news is reporting that DirecTV is testing an OTA setup as a replacement for retransmitting local channels.  Objective:  save retrans fees.



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#2 OFFLINE   Annihilator31

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 02:44 PM

I love the idea, but it won't work for everyone everywhere!


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#3 OFFLINE   peds48

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 02:48 PM

Hmm.  interesting.  Not sure how that would work for folks like myself that would need to get a 15ft outdoor antenna to even get a chance of any reception 


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#4 ONLINE   HoTat2

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 02:59 PM

Yeah I just read that and other articles on this issue;

 

But I'm a little confused here;

 

DIRECTV has always had OTA solutions integrated or not since the HR10-250 TIVO and H20 STB receiver eras on through to the AM21(N).

 

Is Patrick Doyle not aware of this, or is he referring to returning to receivers only with built in integrated OTA tuners like the HR10-250 and H20?    


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#5 OFFLINE   peds48

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 03:02 PM

 

 

DIRECTV has always had OTA solutions integrated or not since the HR10-250 TIVO and H20 STB receiver eras on through to the AM21(N).

 

Is Patrick Doyle not aware of this, or is he referring to returning to receivers only with built in integrated OTA tuners like the HR10-250 and H20?    

I think he's referring to dropping the LIL satellite feed altogether and having some kind of "magical" OTA antenna built in.


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#6 OFFLINE   jerrylove56

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 03:16 PM

Seems like Aero Tv may be having more impact than first thought.  Cheaper than paying the high Retrans. fees netword demand.



#7 OFFLINE   gov

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 03:19 PM

LOL, which ever engineer designed the internal RF remote antenna better not have any input on D* trying something new in the OTA world.

 

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#8 OFFLINE   carl6

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 04:54 PM

To add OTA as a supplement to LIL in all boxes would be wonderful. For them to add it as a replacement for LIL would not be acceptable for most people.

 

As a supplement, it could easily allow most customers to "get by" if negotiations result in loss of a local station for a period of time. That in turn would give DirecTV more leverage in their negotiations, and help keep costs down. The bottom dollar question is could they save enough in retransmission fees to offset the cost of adding OTA back into the receivers and DVRs?



#9 OFFLINE   harsh

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 05:03 PM

Multichannel news is reporting that DirecTV is testing an OTA setup as a replacement for retransmitting local channels.  Objective:  save retrans fees.

If this comes to pass, those to dissed OTA tuners as superfluous will being eating mass quantities of crow.

 

Because LIL and/or DNS is so critical to the acceptance of DBS, I think they're just blowing smoke.


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#10 OFFLINE   JBv

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 05:08 PM

Seems like Aero Tv may be having more impact than first thought.  Cheaper than paying the high Retrans. fees netword demand.

 

That's what I was thinking...perhaps adopt more of an Aereo setup, where they have an antenna array on their end and then actually broadcast it through DBS to customers.

 

But after reading the article it sounds more like they actually are very much considering a built-in OTA tuner once again. Perhaps building the OTA antenna into the physical dish itself, and sending all of it over a single coax line?

Hmmm....


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#11 OFFLINE   mnassour

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 05:12 PM

What I'd bet is that DirecTV would issue tuners to everyone who CAN pick up OTA.  At the same time, it would demand of the stations that it pay retrans fees per subscriber using them, instead of a blanket fee for all subs.



#12 OFFLINE   harsh

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 05:23 PM

What I'd bet is that DirecTV would issue tuners to everyone who CAN pick up OTA.  At the same time, it would demand of the stations that it pay retrans fees per subscriber using them, instead of a blanket fee for all subs.

The question then becomes what to do about those who can't reliably receive the "necessary" channels OTA.  The whole mess falls apart when a user can't get a channel they need so they have to go LIL to fill in the missing channel.

 

You can't very well negotiate a contract based on estimates of who is going to want or need LIL for whatever reason.

 

There is a question in my mind that the stations don't care how many "subscribers" they have as long as they see their bottom line where they want it to be.  If the station isn't getting out, they're likely to want more money per subscriber to maintain the bottom line as I think we can all agree that viewership means next to nothing in these retransmission deals.


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#13 OFFLINE   ThomasM

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 06:23 PM

That's the stupidest idea DirecTV ever had.  I waited to cancel cable over 12 years ago until DirecTV had most of my OTA channels on the satellite because I get lousy OTA reception.  While it would be nice for them to literally build an AM-21 into their new receivers for customers who want subchannels and have good OTA signals, most people would ask "why am I paying for satellite TV when I need an outdoor antenna?"


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#14 OFFLINE   peds48

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 06:53 PM

 most people would ask "why am I paying for satellite TV when I need an outdoor antenna?"

HBO, SHow, TBS, TNT. You get the idea. satellite TV is just not locals.  and you need an outdoor antenna to get DBS anyway.


Edited by peds48, 16 May 2013 - 06:53 PM.

Here’s to the crazy ones.
The misfits. The rebels.
The the troublemakers.
The round pegs in the square holes.

The ones who see things different.
They’re not fond of rules, and they have no respect for the status quo.


Think Differently 

#15 OFFLINE   directv newb

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 07:16 PM

That's the stupidest idea DirecTV ever had.  I waited to cancel cable over 12 years ago until DirecTV had most of my OTA channels on the satellite because I get lousy OTA reception.  While it would be nice for them to literally build an AM-21 into their new receivers for customers who want subchannels and have good OTA signals, most people would ask "why am I paying for satellite TV when I need an outdoor antenna?"

 

I agree with you 100%  100%  100%



#16 OFFLINE   celticpride

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 07:17 PM

I thought the reason of possibly adding an ota antennea to directv receivers was only  to be able to recieve local OTA  channels in the event you lost your satellite  signal during negotiations for a new contract for the local stations!!,NOT because directv wants to remove them!



#17 OFFLINE   jdspencer

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 08:25 PM

Nice idea, but it just won't work too well.  Too many variables when it comes to receiving OTA.

What about people who can receive many OTA channels but are in different directions?

Omnidirectional antennas don't work in areas with terrain problems.

And how do you incorporate a rotor into the system?

 

The whole idea of having your locals on the sat is to eliminate the nee for an outside antenna.

 

The installers have enough problems without them having to install antennas.


Edited by jdspencer, 16 May 2013 - 08:26 PM.

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#18 OFFLINE   slice1900

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 10:19 PM

While I'd love it if they started shipping receivers with ATSC tuners instead of the AM21 being the only option, I'm not sure how this would work. I assume the goal would be to have a backup OTA solution to minimize the ability of local stations to demand crazy fees and Directv being forced to pay up because they fear losing a lot of customers in that market. So they'd continue broadcasting OTA stations via satellite, but would allow for OTA to provide a backup. In markets where most customers can receive the OTA station in question, the customer defections due to losing an OTA channel for a while during "negotiations" would be greatly minimized and improve Directv's bargaining position.

 

They would need three things for this to work:

 

1) some type of antenna to bring in the OTA signal

2) a way to get that signal to the customer's receivers

3) a way for the receivers to tune that signal

 

Adding an OTA tuner to the receivers only addresses #3. What about #1? Would Directv provide the antenna, perhaps a mini antenna attached to the dish mount? Or leave it up to the customer to provide the antenna? Maybe those for whom an indoor antenna would work, or if they happen to have an OTA antenna, but it isn't really a good solution if they leave too much up to the customer to do on his own.

 

As for #2, regardless of what is being used to pull in the OTA signal, how are they going to get that signal to all the receivers in the home? If the customer isn't making use of whole home it can be diplexed in, but that's hardly a workable solution since the OTA capability would go away if/when the customer decides to upgrade to WHDVR. Since DECA/MRV uses the same frequencies as much of the UHF band where most OTA stations reside these days, the two can't coexist.

 

There is one way this could be made to work. Create a special OTA "diplexer" that shifts the UHF frequencies for channels 14-51 in the range of 470-698 MHz to say 230-458 MHz. This is quite similar to the frequency shifting that a SWM multiswitch or B-band converter does, so it shouldn't be too difficult or costly to do. If Directv went with the mini-antenna on the dish, this device would be built into it. Only customers providing their own OTA antenna would need it as a separate unit.

 

The "H26" and "HR45" would have a single RF input that could tune satellite in the existing SWM frequency range, DECA in the existing DECA range, UHF in the modified/lowered range, and VHF at its standard frequencies. If a customer has older equipment that uses an AM21, rather than swap out the receiver/AM21 combo they could optionally swap the AM21 for an "AM22" that tuned the modified UHF frequency and had an output that would loop into the receiver's satellite input.


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#19 OFFLINE   gov

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 11:08 PM

How about a 'module' that is on the roof antenna that puts a selected OTA onto a SWiM channel as a SWiM channel??


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#20 OFFLINE   CCarncross

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Posted 17 May 2013 - 06:26 AM

To add OTA as a supplement to LIL in all boxes would be wonderful. For them to add it as a replacement for LIL would not be acceptable for most people.

 

As a supplement, it could easily allow most customers to "get by" if negotiations result in loss of a local station for a period of time. That in turn would give DirecTV more leverage in their negotiations, and help keep costs down. The bottom dollar question is could they save enough in retransmission fees to offset the cost of adding OTA back into the receivers and DVRs?

The OTA supplement has never gone away.  I have OTA on all 3 of my HD DVR's....its very easy to do even now.  H20's and HR20's have built-in OTA, all other current HD models can use an AM-21....they work great if OTA is possible where you live.


Edited by CCarncross, 17 May 2013 - 06:27 AM.





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