I know this is a common complaint, but I have to say I have become quite impressed with alot of the FIOS offerings...first of all, the picture quality is great...I definitely like it more than Directv, which I had right before switching to FIOS. I'm happy the media manager is coming to Mac, so hopefully soon I can successfully stream pictures, videos, and music. On Demand is great, and I would hate to lose that by going back to Directv....in fact, after signing into a 1 year contract, and saving alot of money, I figured I would very likely be leaving verizon after a year...but I have to say, they keep impressing me month after month...
HOWEVER, the DVR storage is a game ender for me...my contract is up in January, and if I don't hear anything by then about any kind of expansion options (either through external drives or new STBs), I am likely switching back to Directv...I watch tv a fair amount of time, but am too busy to keep up with all the shows I watch...I like recording in HD, but so often am forced to record in SD because the hard drive is so small, and it will fill up way too quick! I just cannot believe how terribly behind these DVR units are...it is ridiculous that they would think they are being competitive...all the other features are top notch in so many ways, but they REALLY dropped the ball on storage space...I just refuse to pay $32/month for two dvr's that are so sub-standard...I would consider switching to Tivo, but don't want to pay the extra money to buy the box...plus I like all my media manager options and VOD...
Anyways, I know this horse has been beaten, but I'm kicking it a few more times...
Yup, beating a dead horse here
The current Verizon DVR will not see a size increase. Period
Now, you said January is when your contract ends. Likely there will be no solution by then. Verizon has said that they will be rolling out new STB with a different manufacturer (Cisco) some time after the first of the year. These are supposed to have double the recording space of the current dvr's. And they are hinting that these new boxes will have expandable storage in the way of external drive access. The problem is going to be, that even if the do get those boxes right away, and assuming that they do have larger hard drives. The chances are that there will be a huge waiting list for them. The last time they had a shortage of boxes the waiting list was in excess of 6 months long. With all the problems they are having with the Motorola boxes, they will likely only be issuing the Cisco's to customers with long standing reports of problems. Once they take care of all the technical problems, THEN and only then will they start making them available to the rest of us. My guess (and this is just my opinion) would be that the storage issue will not be something that we will be able to address for us regular users until mid year next year at the earliest.
However, you could always purchase a TIVO DVR and then get a Cable Card from Verizon. The Tivo's already have expandable storage.
There are several 1TB external drives available on Amazon for less than $100. I have one connected to my PC and have no problems streaming video from it, so why doesn't Verizon enable this feature on the STB?
HOWEVER, the DVR storage is a game ender for me...my contract is up in January, and if I don't hear anything by then about any kind of expansion options (either through external drives or new STBs), I am likely switching back to Directv...
I just cannot believe how terribly behind these DVR units are...it is ridiculous that they would think they are being competitive...all the other features are top notch in so many ways, but they REALLY dropped the ball on storage space...I just refuse to pay $32/month for two dvr's that are so sub-standard...I would consider switching to Tivo, but don't want to pay the extra money to buy the box...plus I like all my media manager options and VOD...
Verizon is expected to offer a DVR with 320GB storage in 1Q 2010.
Every FiOS customer has three options today to expand high-definition storage:
(1) TivoHD - $220 for 160GB internal or $420 for 1TB internal, plus $12.99/mo, $129/yr, or $330-$399 upfront to eliminate all future fees; supports up to 1TB external, as well as internal drive upgrades.
(2) Moxi - $499 for 500GB internal with no fees (lifetime subscription included); supports up to 6TB external
(3) PC with Windows 7 Media Center - $200-$250 per ATI CableCard tuner, no DVR fees aside from electricity use; if you have an Xbox360, that can act as a remote viewing extender for the Windows 7 PC elsewhere in your home
All three options offer superior media manager support compared to the FiOS DVR.
All three of the options work independently of the Verizon box (they don't connect to it) and eliminate Verizon's STB and DVR fees. They do require one CableCard from Verizon for $3.99/mo; this is an access card that plugs into the front of the box to authorize all your channels. On the TivoHD and Moxi, one Multistream CableCard (M-CARD) supports both built-in tuners.
None support FiOS OnDemand, though alll three options support Netflix streaming (only TiVo supports Netflix HD), and Moxi supports Hulu when certain software is running on your PC.
For a detailed comparison of TiVo and Moxi, see the AVS HDTV Recorder comparison table.
Again, I am amazed at how Verizon is (not) handling these issues. There are several 1TB external drives available on Amazon for less than $100. I have one connected to my PC and have no problems streaming video from it, so why doesn't Verizon enable this feature on the STB? The Answer: Verizon is notorious for diabling features offered by the hardware vendors, especiallys for set-top-boxes and cell phones.
Verizon hasn't disabled anything. Motorola doesn't enable the ports in the first place, nor does it provide the means for providers to enable them. For now, they are only "for show;" they are intended for future use.
This summer, Motorola released its first firmware with protected eSATA storage support, and that firmware is still very buggy. It has a ways to go before it is ready for public deployment by a provider like Comcast or FiOS.
In the first quarter of 2010, Verizon will have Motorola dvrs available, with 320gb of storage. There is no official date of the release of these stbs as of yet.
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I'd love to know why it's not possible to add storage to a device that has USB, network, and esata connections. So far I find FIOS great in most regards but I agree this is a huge miff.
Well, Like KenAF said, the USB, network, and esata connections on the motorola boxes are just for show. They are non functional. Motorola does not enable them and Companies like Verizon are unable to utilize them. Motorola has made a firmware upgrade to allow them to start using some of these connections but it is still not ready for release. So basically these boxes are stuck with only the internal drive. New DVR's are scheduled and there is talk about the new manufacturer (cisco) will hopefully have expandable storage available. But right now it is all rumors and hopes. We have to wait and see on these