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cornflakes
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎07-02-2009
Location: Redondo Beach, CA
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Future of FIOS TV? Time to switch back to satellite?

What's the future looking like for FIOS TV?  I haven't really seen a whole lot of new HD channels added, I think the most recent ones I can think of were MSNBC and Fox News.  But there are lots of other HD channels out there that it looks like a lot of people have been asking for, and we don't really see a whole lot of action.

 

There's talk that FIOS is out of capacity on the QAM channels?

 

There's talk that adding new channels cost money (even if they're just HD versions of the same SD channels), though I don't necessarily mind paying a few bucks more for more HD channels, since FIOS is still a better deal than satellite and cable.

 

There's talk that a lot of the channels requested like E! HD, BBC America HD, G4TV HD, are not full-time HD channels, or they're not popular enough to get added.  Other channels are not available due to blackout restrictions or other reasons.

 

But I can't ignore the fact that Dish Network and DirecTV are working very aggressively to add new HD channels.  What's FIOS doing about this?  Are they working on adding more?  Or are they cutting back since Verizon is cutting back on FIOS expansions and deployments?

 

This is not flame bait.  So this isn't one of those "Well if you're so unhappy with FIOS then leave, and good riddance" posts.

 

I love FIOS and I'd be giving up a lot if I were to ditch FIOS TV:

 

1. My FIOS Internet bill will jump because my plan is not offered anymore, and I'd have to jump up or down to a different plan, and I won't be qualifying for a bundle discount anymore

 

2. I have my own Tivo HD boxes, and I love Tivo.  

 

3. The TV in my office which I plug directly into FIOS to watch local channels without a receiver box will need its own satellite receiver, which is an additional monthly cost.

 

4. The picture quality is nicer on FIOS.

 

But I also don't want to stick around if FIOS is going to stand idly by while DirecTV and Dish add new programming like crazy.

 

What do you guys think?  Are you thinking about switching, especially those who have been requesting for certain new channels for a while now?  At what point do you give up and switch to get what you want?

Copper Contributor
Rhodyman
Posts: 44
Registered: ‎02-18-2010
Location: RI
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Re: Future of FIOS TV? Time to switch back to satellite?

I recently left D* for Fios and I couldn't be happier! The pq blows satellite away, the bundle price saves me $, and best of all, no rain/snow fade! I love Fios and only really want FSC-HD added and I'll be a happy camper (for awhile! lol). I'll never go back to D*.

 

I highly doubt D*/Dish will ad that many HD channels in the near future(from techdirt.com):

 

"I asked Dish Network's PR department for a list of the 200 HD channels, numbered from 1 to 200. Not too surprising, the company was evasive, saying the 200 HD channels could be found at its web site. However, when I told them I could not locate more than around 130 HD channels listed at DishNetwork.com, the company's PR department got even more evasive -- and started to act a bit strange. At one point, a company spokeswoman said she could give me a breakdown of the 200 HD channels on "background only," meaning I couldn't attribute the information to Dish Network."

 

The artcle goes on to state that many of the so-called additional HD offerings included On-Demand movies!! Talk about misleading!!

Silver Contributor II
Caps09
Posts: 567
Registered: ‎05-11-2009
Location: Richmond, VA
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Re: Future of FIOS TV? Time to switch back to satellite?

From the speculation I've heard, it sounds like Verizon is almost out of QAM space under their current configuration. It did sound like they can increase capacity with some engineering work though, which they are supposedly working on. I don't know how long it will take, but apparently the fiber network can handle just about anything they put into it. The problem seems to be getting it in there. In the short term, we'll miss out on some channels others may get, but in the long term, I believe we're much better off with Verizon compared to cable, sat, and even U-Verse.

As for the bundles, they will come and go. If I can find a good deal after mine expires, I'll be going for it. For your office TV, I would suggest a small "digital adapter" for $4 a month. You might even be able to get it free for a while if you tell them about your situation. This box doesn't support on demand or have a program guide, but it will give you all the SD channels you get on other boxes in your house.

Bronze Contributor II
philhu
Posts: 199
Registered: ‎11-21-2008
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Re: Future of FIOS TV? Time to switch back to satellite?

[ Edited ]

I am glad in the long term, we will be ok.

 

My bigger problem is that FiOS DOES NOT TELL US WHY THEY AREN'T ADDING CHANNELS.

 

There have been 3 recent channels people are begging for, FiOS response? TOTAL SILENCE.  Customer conjecture causes complaints and churn.  If they put in their 'magazine' that they are reconfiguring and you just watch for the channel explosion in the fall or winter or whatever, I think we would be happy.  But as they've raised their rates, removed channels from packages and been totally silent on new channel offerings, we have a real problem.

 

What do you consider 'long term'.  A year, 2 years, 5 years?  I have seen almost NO channel growth in 6 months, while my Dad's Comcast has gotten quite a few new HD channels.

 

I am getting very afraid that FiOS will not last 1-2 years as they will give up saying they did all they could to compete but gave up.  Look at the Northwest systems, sold to Frontier.

 

You gotta give the customer a 'bone' sometimes, or they will go somewhere else for food.

 

 

 

Gold Contributor I
spacedebris
Posts: 1,692
Registered: ‎05-17-2009

Re: Future of FIOS TV? Time to switch back to satellite?

I managed to talk to my buddy at Verizon tech support and got a face to face meeting with one of the Managers there. One of the things we discussed was the lack of communication between Verizon and and public. I asked why there were no public discussions about what is comming up in terms of programming, equipment and other technical updates.

 

I was told that Verizon doesnt do that because they "dont want to set expectations, and then not come through".

 

I understand that but they dont have to give exact dates or anything, just something like. Its comming some time this year. Or it will be out in the near future. Or It wont happen for several years. Something is better than the nothing we get now.

 

We went round and round on this subject. All boiling down to they dont want to give out info to the public. I pointed out, that as an "advanced user" that I am not asking for exact dates and times. I just want to know that BBC Am HD is going to be out this year, or that the new stb's will be out in the next few months, or something like that. I understand that thing happen, the economy changes, priorities get changed, so I dont hold them to specifics, just let us know and keep the public in the "general loop". I tried to explain that other companies all share general info with their customers and Verizon does not. Unfortunatly I think I was talking to a block of wood because I couldnt get that through her head. She just came back with the same balone about not setting expectations. If she is any indication of the people that are making the decisions, I feel sorry for all us customers. She did say that there are big plans for the HD programming and the equipment being used but refused to go into greater detail.

 

I left the meeting more frustraited than I was when I started. But basically they dont want to put the info out to the public. I guess we will just have to be supprised when things happen




====================================================================================

Error exists between keyboard and chair.
Platinum Contributor I
prisaz
Posts: 6,753
Registered: ‎08-23-2008
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Re: Future of FIOS TV? Time to switch back to satellite?

[ Edited ]

Also to add to what spacedebris said.

 

They also do not want to give the competition a heads up on their plans. It is sad though we hear about things like the new Motorola DVR with the 320gig drive from DSLR before we hear about it on Verizon's own web site. Not a big deal, my Tivo has a self installed gig drive and 142 hrs of HD capacity. I think before Verizon's PR people tell someone something, it should be released on the company website first. Perhaps Verizon executives get kick backs for exclusives.

 

As far as any big explosion in technology, look at Apple and how they do it. Not like Verizon RD person can leave a new DVR at a bar. Unlike an Iphone. How many people heard about or saw the Ipad before Apple wanted them to? It would be nice to see something on the Verizon front, but we can only hope changes are revolutionary and not a big let down. Like wow an extra 160gig on a DVR. I think they should be able to manage more than that.

Contributor
cornflakes
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎07-02-2009
Location: Redondo Beach, CA
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Re: Future of FIOS TV? Time to switch back to satellite?

All good responses, thanks... I'm trying to think long term here as well, but how long is the wait?

 

The biggest issue seems to be capacity... Is FIOS out of space or not (and I don't mean on the fiber side, but on the QAM side)?  Can this be solved?  I heard that they're looking into some sort of IP-based controller or something like that... how does that fit in with my Tivo/CableCARD situation?  And if this is the answer to more channels, how long is that deployment going to take?

 

I understand the reasoning for silence, but when you're in a competitive world such as pay TV, sometimes you gotta reveal your hand.  Dish and DirecTV both did it.  They both said right away, "yup, our satellites are full, you're not getting new HD until year xxxx when we have new satellites up and running."

 

If Verizon would say "Yup, QAM is full, you're not getting new HD until we deploy the xxxxx technology, and that'll be in year xxxx", I might be willing to wait that out if it's reasonable enough.

 

But my other concern is Verizon has cut back on their investment and deployment of FIOS.  Is this any indication of them not investing in new technologies and money into deploying more HD for their current customers?

Platinum Contributor I
prisaz
Posts: 6,753
Registered: ‎08-23-2008
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Re: Future of FIOS TV? Time to switch back to satellite?

 


cornflakes wrote:

All good responses, thanks... I'm trying to think long term here as well, but how long is the wait?

 

The biggest issue seems to be capacity... Is FIOS out of space or not (and I don't mean on the fiber side, but on the QAM side)?  Can this be solved?  I heard that they're looking into some sort of IP-based controller or something like that... how does that fit in with my Tivo/CableCARD situation?  And if this is the answer to more channels, how long is that deployment going to take?

 


Like I said. I suspect some new technology Verizon is not willing to reveal at this time. I too want to know about the cable card customers. I being one of them. I think perhaps that is what is holding things up in the way of change and expansion.

 

I understand the reasoning for silence, but when you're in a competitive world such as pay TV, sometimes you gotta reveal your hand.  Dish and DirecTV both did it.  They both said right away, "yup, our satellites are full, you're not getting new HD until year xxxx when we have new satellites up and running."

 

If Verizon would say "Yup, QAM is full, you're not getting new HD until we deploy the xxxxx technology, and that'll be in year xxxx", I might be willing to wait that out if it's reasonable enough.

 

But my other concern is Verizon has cut back on their investment and deployment of FIOS.  Is this any indication of them not investing in new technologies and money into deploying more HD for their current customers?


 

Now think of it this way. Concentrating on areas already built out gives Verizon the financial ability to invest and expand services in these areas. Try to start getting a higher return on investment. The FiOS deployment was no small investment. I believe once the subscription level reaches the desired point, Verizon may then continue to build out. It makes business sense. IMO.

Bronze Contributor II
psumatt
Posts: 188
Registered: ‎08-04-2008
Location: Wilmington, DE
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Re: Future of FIOS TV? Time to switch back to satellite?

 

Corn-
An IPTV solution would keep cable card / TIVO users out of the action, so to speak. The TIVO would not be able to pick these up, since they'll be sent almost the same way On Demand is on the VZ network.
This is a great thread - everything in here is true. VZ's inability, or lack of desire to speak to their customers is maddening. But for 2010, VZ will fall out of the HD lead - that's more than apparent. And the FIOS TV Twitter rep just drives me up a wall. He vaguely tells people "channels are coming". Well no crap!  When is the important element of that statement.
The only reason we saw MSNBC HD? It took the QAM slot of Red Zone.
If you remember back to the big HD addition in 2008, it took VZ over 6 months to make that work. Nothing moves fast with this company.

 

Platinum Contributor I
prisaz
Posts: 6,753
Registered: ‎08-23-2008
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Re: Future of FIOS TV? Time to switch back to satellite?

 


psumatt wrote:

 

Corn-
An IPTV solution would keep cable card / TIVO users out of the action, so to speak. The TIVO would not be able to pick these up, since they'll be sent almost the same way On Demand is on the VZ network.
This is a great thread - everything in here is true. VZ's inability, or lack of desire to speak to their customers is maddening. But for 2010, VZ will fall out of the HD lead - that's more than apparent. And the FIOS TV Twitter rep just drives me up a wall. He vaguely tells people "channels are coming". Well no crap!  When is the important element of that statement.
The only reason we saw MSNBC HD? It took the QAM slot of Red Zone.
If you remember back to the big HD addition in 2008, it took VZ over 6 months to make that work. Nothing moves fast with this company.
Perhaps Verizon does not want the next big roll out to take six months. But with their sealed lips we will never know until it happens, or we hear it on DSL reports through a leak. I can only suspect big things are coming. Yes Verizon could have an IP app for Tivo and it would be no different than Netflix or the others. Tivo's new DVR even advertises Verizon. So who is to say it will not happen. I am usually the Pessimistic guy. But we can be hopeful on this.

 


 

 

 

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