A week or so ago I received the offer below in the mail. I'm trying to decide whether it's worth it and I'm wondering if anyone could give me a sense of what costs I could expect to incur with this offer. The costs are a major consideration because we're having our HVAC (AC and furnace) replaced in September and so money is a little tight right now.
I tried searching the forum for advice, but the problem I run into is there's a lot of technical jargon and acronyms and I just haven't really kept up with a lot of that stuff over the past several years for a variety of reasons. It appears clear to me we'd need some kind of equipment upgrade and would not be able to plug a Genie in as things now stand, but I'm not sure what we'd need nor what the cost is. Been a DirecTV customer since 2001; we currently have a Slimline dish that was installed several years ago (I do not remember when) and two HD DVR boxes, I think an HR20 and an HR21 but I may be mistaken on that. Both boxes have two coax cables connected to the back via B-band converters. We do not have receivers on the TVs in our bedroom and guest room because we don't watch them enough to justify the expense (mostly we use them to watch the 11 PM News, Fallon's monologue if we can stay awake, and sometimes stuff on the weekends when cleaning house). So it's the two TVs. One of those two is a 2001-era Panasonic rear-projection that supports 480i, 480p, and 1080i, but not 720p or 1080p (the latter didn't exist yet); neither that TV nor the Onkyo receiver down there supports HDMI because it didn't exist at the time (I currently use the component video connection and coax digital audio down there). The other TV is a 2008-era Sony LCD that supports all the resolutions and has the HDMI connection; it's not connected to a receiver or the like due its location in the house. There is no phone jack near the Sony TV and there is no Ethernet jack near either one. I assume that means we'd need a wireless Genie client for one of the TVs, most likely the Sony because it looks like the wireless client doesn't allow a component connection. (Upgrading the Panasonic to a new TV is not in the cards right now due to that HVAC replacement!) Can't presently watch any DirecTV programming on my iPhone or iPad and can't watch On Demand programming because the HD DVRs we have are not connected to the Internet due to the lack of wireless support.
I'm assuming if we do this we will probably need some sort of multiswitch upgrade and a wireless Genie client for the one TV. Is there something else we'd need to connect to the FIOS router (which is upstairs in the home office on the third floor; the TVs in question are on the first and second floors) to allow for On Demand and the like? Running Ethernet cables and the like is not an appealing option for several reasons, not the least of which is a gas fireplace near the Sony TV.
On the whole we're generally satisfied with the current configuration other than the glacial pace the two boxes exhibit when you try to change channels or press any other button on the remote. My wife is intrigued by the idea of having enough tuners to allow recording several things at once while watching another—it's not usually a problem but occasionally presents an issue on Monday nights. I'm interested in the upgrade offer largely because I view it in part as a due diligence type of thing and because I wonder what sort of benefit it might pose. On the other hand, I'm concerned about the hidden cost of upgrading and I'm wary of the idea of signing onto a new two-year programming commitment (right now, we have no commitment) in view of the whole AT&T acquisition thing. I'm not sure I want to put myself in a situation where I might be stuck if AT&T makes a bunch of changes.
Thanks in advance for any advice. If you could explain any acronyms or technical jargon, I would be quite grateful! One of my beefs with DirecTV has been how those of us who are longstanding customers are the last to be offered any new services and how it's hard to find out about anything unless you spend lots of time on a forum such as this one, which I simply have not had time to do these last few years. I tried wading though the wealth of information on the forum but wound up feeling overwhelmed by all of it and decided I might do better just asking!