Directv Now raising prices again

Discussion in 'DIRECTV General Discussion' started by slice1900, Oct 18, 2019.

  1. James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Those folks want to see the content NOW ... as it is released to the world. Streamers who do not watch live TV are more rare than people who watch no TV at all. (The true cord cutters who didn't just swap their MVPD subscription for on demand subscriptions, but completely walked away from TV via any device.)

    Folks that want to watch their favorite sports team want Live TV. Reality shows with voting are a natural for Live TV. Shows with compelling content drive Live TV. Sure, one could wait a couple months and binge watch Game of Thrones or other content originally released on Live TV ... but one would also be spending those months avoiding spoilers. And the more popular the show, the more likely one would see spoilers. Live TV remains an important part of the television landscape.

    Here is your challenge: You are now forbidden to watch anything live within 24 hours of when it was released. No sports, no voting shows, no immensely popular dramas. You will probably lose interest in those shows and not watch at all.
     
  2. SledgeHammer

    SledgeHammer Icon

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    I would think it costs significantly MORE to deliver via streaming. Cable is already wired pretty much everywhere. You just need to occasionally replace relatively cheap equipment. To launch a sat is, what, $600M? Ok, but you cover the entire US for relatively very little money. Could you lay down fiber or coax across the US for $600M? DEFINITELY not. Once you deploy cable / sat, it doesn't cost much in terms of ongoing infrastructure.

    Streaming is a whole new ball game. As you add customers, you need to add new servers, more bandwidth, more electricity, more heat management (= even more electricity). If you are cloud based with Azure or AWS, you pay lots in bandwidth fees as well.

    As an example, my company is in Azure, my project is being migrated. It's just 8 serverless web apps sitting around gathering dust (company politics) plus various security things in place and it costs $3500+ a month for ZERO usage with a steep corp discount. To be clear, that cost is just the serverless web apps sitting around doing nothing waiting for corporate to get their act together. ZERO activity = $3500/mo.
     
  3. SledgeHammer

    SledgeHammer Icon

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    Now I've seen CC's applaud the video quality, but user interface? Uh... no... pretty universal from what I see on the forums that the cloud DVRs need a lot of work.
     
  4. ericknolls

    ericknolls Member

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    I knew it along. When AT&T got in to streaming services they were going to mess the game up. Streaming companies need to beat AT&T at their own game. They need to partner with other services and offer features that sets themselves apart from them. It doesn't help that AT&T was allowed to buy Time Warner's media services. It just makes it harder for these streaming services to compete with this "big" bad wolf!
     
  5. SledgeHammer

    SledgeHammer Icon

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    Yeah, no kidding. Why would anyone want to watch live TV? :rolleyes: Weird theory coming from a sports nut. Let's tell him to watch the Superbowl or NBA playoffs or World Series a week or two delayed and see how that goes over.
     
  6. SledgeHammer

    SledgeHammer Icon

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    AT&T messes pretty much everything up.
     
  7. ericknolls

    ericknolls Member

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    That 20 hour DVR cap on recording will change. I bet AT&T waits and see what their competitors will do to meet or exceed that cap. They could announce a better DVR with more capacity. It may change down the line.
     
  8. James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Cloud DVR space has a monthly recurring cost for the provider. If that "20 hours" is dedicated per customer (no shared content) expanding the space raises the cost per subscriber. Higher costs for the provider needs to lead to higher rates for the subscribers.

    Shared recording would help but that moves from the legalities of "DVR" use to "OnDemand" contracts. For example, capturing the actual OTA signal from all 210 television markets would create 210 copies of each program aired (with the correct commercials for each market). Converting to an "OnDemand" version after a couple of days reduces the number of redundant copies needed - but also loses the local ads. Fortunately streaming can insert ads into OnDemand content on behalf of the local stations.

    BTW: 210 copies can turn in to a million copies if the provider is forced to rely on "DVR" laws that allow for private recording (one copy per household) instead of a contractual agreements that allows shared recordings.

    It seems much easier to install large hard drives in the customer's house and let them handle recordings (as authorized by home recording laws) than provision millions of terabytes of cloud space, paid for on a monthly basis.
     
  9. espaeth

    espaeth AllStar

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    Just like comparing the Genie, the Hopper, and Xfinity X1... there is variance within the space.

    Overall I think YoutubeTV has the best UI going in this space. For example, if I add a show to my library on YoutubeTV — it saves every episode on every channel and builds out a Netflix-like library of season / episode for that show. I don’t have to concern myself with timers, or storage, or care when anything got “recorded.”

    When I launch YTTV to watch one of the local teams I follow, I don’t have to touch the guide at all. Right on the home page I’m presented with the game, and I’m 2 clicks away from joining live or watching from the beginning to catch up to live (skipping TV timeouts).

    Add in functional search, no lag on the ATV4k interface, and a guide where you can not only customize which channels are shown but also completely customize the order.. all those things add up to a major improvement to the user experience.

    Then you compare things like NHL.tv to Center Ice. On Center Ice if you want to jump between games you have to select through the guide because of all the stupid -1 HD channels on DIRECTV, you can’t tell which games are in commercial, which games are close, etc. Using the NHL app you can select games by live scoreboard, get complete access to all US and Canadian feeds in HD, and you have the advantage of full DVR controls to rewind any game from any feed.

    Some of the UX complaints on streaming remind me a bit of the Henry Ford “If I had asked the people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses” quote. Streaming is trying to change the focus to the content, and people keep getting tripped up on things that were more important in traditional linear delivery systems like multi-day guides and channel numbers.
     
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  10. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    I know folks are hung up on channels. Must be really confusing when sites like Roku call all the sites you can access thru their boxes channels. I had that problem a few years ago and I got over it.

    I'll agree with you about the difficulty of navigating thru some sites. Hulu is one such site. I use it a lot and there are times when it still bothers me. Why any site can't copy what Netflix does is beyond me. Amazon did that and it's pretty easy to use the AP app or the Amazon boxes. HBO Now is easy to use. Showtime and Starz could use better UIs. But when I want to watch shows on those sites I know it's gonna be a PITA and I deal with it. I'm used to streaming.

    You said this: If the goal is to save significant money then subbing to a single service at a time is probably ideal. But I’ve yet to find a single one that I like well enough to only sub to it and nothing else. What I said, what I meant, was you don't have to have more than one site active at any time if money is a consideration. Have to remember, you activate a video streamer and you are locked in for a month. Would take some planning to only have one active at a time but it's doable.

    Rich
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2019
  11. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    Exactly. Well said. I can watch sports on D* and I'm not too annoyed by the PQ. Just the thought of watching "normal" TV shows annoys me. The PQ we get with D* is clearly inferior to what I see when streaming. It is the "superior end user experience", I think.

    Rich
     
  12. Rich

    Rich DBSTalk Club DBSTalk Club

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    Yup, and they try to convince folks that their way is the only way that makes sense. Gotta have a Guide, gotta have channel numbers or how can I find what I want to see? Then you see comments about watching a Super Bowl a month later...what does that have to do with anything? And who would do that?

    Rich
     
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  13. slovell

    slovell New Member

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    Not many reasons to switch to streaming IMHO. I've noticed that over the last year DTV's satellite picture quality has softened somewhat. It just doesn't look as sharp as it used too. Could be my tv but I don't think so, it looks like compression. I still haven't upgraded to 4K, not enough content, other than sports which I seldom watch, to get me to convert.
     
  14. SledgeHammer

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    You might like that, but I think its terrible. Sometimes when I am home I scour the guide for the next 3 - 4 hrs and record episodes I want to watch to kill time. I.e. 2 1/2 Men. I am interested in watching the 2 - 3 episodes I picked. Not spending an hour digging through the 200+ episodes by season to find one to watch. After I watch it, I don't want to see it again cluttering up my "library" as you call it. I am watch and delete.

    When I used Amazon and Netflix and they had That 70s Show which also has 200+ episodes, I had to suffer through searching through 200+ episodes to find one to watch. Not something I want to do on a regular basis.

    Yes, I can scour 3 - 4 hours of the guide MUCH faster then sifting through season / episode lists.
     
  15. espaeth

    espaeth AllStar

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    You can follow that same workflow with YoutubeTV. Pop open the guide, scroll forward a couple hours, select shows you want to watch. The big difference is you most likely won’t have to wait for those syndicated episodes to rebroadcast yet again to start watching them.

    For shows that are on constantly like 2.5 dudes, most of the HGTV shows, etc, if you select a future airing episode in the guide and click “More Info” it takes you to that show in your library where you can watch that specific episode that you’ve probably recorded several times in the last 9 months.

    If you want to select your episodes using the guide instead of scrolling through seasons and episodes, it’s just another way of landing you at the same place.

    That’s the big difference in the streaming services, it’s a shortcut to the content you want to watch.
     
  16. SledgeHammer

    SledgeHammer Icon

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    Yes, but you don't end up with a clean list of stuff to watch. I.e. your playlist.

    Imagine at your workplace, I'm sure you use Outlook or something like that? Do you want 10,000+ emails in your inbox? I work with a few folks that do that... I think its stupid. They can never find anything, have no clue what they need to work on at any given time, you often have to email them multiple times to remind them, etc. I've never in my life needed to refer to an email from 6 months ago, and likely not many people have. I have rules that delete mailing lists, report type emails, etc. Then I end up with probably a few hundred throughout the day. I read them, do my part on it, if anything and then delete them (from the inbox) and move on with my life. So at any given time, my inbox contains my "to do" list.

    That isn't possible with YouTubeTV since your "inbox" will contain everything under the sun.

    The only time I would ever find the YouTube approach to be useful is if say, I just discovered 2.5 Men and want to watch every episode, in order. It would still be a pain to remember where you left off as you watch though.

    I discovered 24 last year and binge watched it by download. As I watched the episodes, I deleted them. What do I need to keep them for? Not like I'm going to re-watch all of them any time soon.
     
  17. compnurd

    compnurd Hall Of Fame

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    I get between 100-200 emails a day. They all get sorted. I cringe when I see people with thousands of email in there inbox.
     
  18. cypherx

    cypherx Hall Of Fame

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    Like this :
    [​IMG]
     
  19. compnurd

    compnurd Hall Of Fame

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    Just reset your phone lol
     
  20. espaeth

    espaeth AllStar

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    True, you never get to an empty library with this apporach, but you also don't end up with everything sitting uncategorized in a big pile in your inbox.

    .. but it's all sorted at the top level by show/series, or team/league. Furthermore, you can list those by which shows have recent recordings (including re-runs) vs which shows have brand new unwatched episodes. Watch progress is tracked per episode, and since it's a cloud service it's persisted no matter which device you watch a show on.

    Not only does the library have a functional taxonomy to assist with navigation, the entire library is searchable based on all metadata attributes associated with each episode.

    All that said, pretty much the only thing I watch on YoutubeTV these days is hockey and baseball, with a couple random shows we don't get elsewhere. Most of our viewing these days ends up being regular Youtube, NHL.tv, Hulu (not live/no commercials), Netflix, HBO, and occasionally some stuff on Prime Video. For the "Cable over the Internet" providers there is lots of discussion about DVR controls and restrictions, and while there are definitely annoying aspects to each service, it starts to not matter anymore. Most of our non-live event viewing has gravitated to platforms that don't have commercials to begin with.

    And to tie this back into the topic of the thread, that's why I don't get what ATT is doing here with having a stupidly high priced streaming service. Only a fraction of the content they're pushing through the service is truly live and needing to be delivered in a linear fashion -- the majority is available in catalogs of other online services completely on-demand and commercial free. ATT is focused on creating a modern day ultra-light carbon fiber buggy whip.
     

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