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When will Verizon get competitive with Comcast

When will Verizon get competitive with Comcast

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Platinum Contributor III Platinum Contributor III
Platinum Contributor III
Posts: 5,175
Registered: ‎08-05-2008
Message 11 of 21
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@mustbjones wrote:
Hardware issues are easy to fix.  Just tell Moto that with the next buy, add PiP, or Verizon goes to another supplier.

You are right, hardware issues are easy to fix, just buy new hardware, and write software to support it .

 

So tell me, how much extra are you willing to pay Verizon so they can replace all of the DVRs they have installed, and write the code to support the new hardware? And how long do you think that will take? I have no idea how many DVRs are currently installed in customer installations, sitting in the warehouses waiting to be installed, etc, but since Verizon has about two million FiOS TV customers I think, I would guess at least one million. So, how long and how much to replace all of that? If they get some other brand, they will have to develop new software that fits that architecture before they can deliver the first box. And with that new capability there would probably be huge demand for it, and initially a very low supply. When do you think you (or I) would get one?

 

I want the capability too. But I think it is unrealistic to expect it anytime soon, assuming that the current hardware won't work (which we all hope is incorrect). If all or most of the hardware already in use actually does/could support PIP, then the timeframe could be a few months or even less. But new hardware? Years I think, unfortunately. 

 

I hope I am wrong.

 

__________________________________
Justin
Verizon FiOS TV, Internet, and phone
IMG 1.6.2, Build 08.58
Keller, TX 76248

Bronze Contributor I
Bronze Contributor I
Posts: 65
Registered: ‎12-15-2008
Message 12 of 21
(5,038 Views)

@Justin wrote:

 

If all or most of the hardware already in use actually does/could support PIP, then the timeframe could be a few months or even less. But new hardware? Years I think, unfortunately. 


You're spot on Justin.

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Nickel Contributor
Nickel Contributor
Posts: 28
Registered: ‎03-01-2009
Message 13 of 21
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@Justin wrote:

@mustbjones wrote:
Hardware issues are easy to fix.  Just tell Moto that with the next buy, add PiP, or Verizon goes to another supplier.

You are right, hardware issues are easy to fix, just buy new hardware, and write software to support it .

 

So tell me, how much extra are you willing to pay Verizon so they can replace all of the DVRs they have installed, and write the code to support the new hardware? And how long do you think that will take? I have no idea how many DVRs are currently installed in customer installations, sitting in the warehouses waiting to be installed, etc, but since Verizon has about two million FiOS TV customers I think, I would guess at least one million. So, how long and how much to replace all of that? If they get some other brand, they will have to develop new software that fits that architecture before they can deliver the first box. And with that new capability there would probably be huge demand for it, and initially a very low supply. When do you think you (or I) would get one?

 

I want the capability too. But I think it is unrealistic to expect it anytime soon, assuming that the current hardware won't work (which we all hope is incorrect). If all or most of the hardware already in use actually does/could support PIP, then the timeframe could be a few months or even less. But new hardware? Years I think, unfortunately. 

 

I hope I am wrong.

 

__________________________________
Justin
Verizon FiOS TV, Internet, and phone
IMG 1.6.2, Build 08.58
Keller, TX 76248


I would be willing to pay a $25 once upgrade fee.  It could just be a simple board change, or putting a card in a slot.  The technology all ready exists and nothing new is being invented.  And, it would keep Verizon competitive with Comcast and Direct TV - in this area.

Contributor iamhe
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Posts: 6
Registered: ‎04-25-2009
Message 14 of 21
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PiP would certainly be nice, however at this point, I would be happier if Verizon would focus on the fundamentals instead of the bells and whistles.  For example, why can't I jump to the beginning of a show that is currently being recorded?  Why must I sequentially rewind through the entire show to get to the start?  I'd much rather have that issue resolved than having properly-functioning PiP.
Message Edited by iamhe on 04-25-2009 10:00 AM
Platinum Contributor III Platinum Contributor III
Platinum Contributor III
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Message 15 of 21
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@iamhe wrote:
PiP would certainly be nice, however at this point, I would be happier if Verizon would focus on the fundamentals instead of the bells and whistles.  For example, why can't I jump to the beginning of a show that is currently being recorded?  Why must I sequentially rewind through the entire show to get to the start?  I'd much rather have that issue resolved than having properly-functioning PiP.
Message Edited by iamhe on 04-25-2009 10:00 AM

I agree, fix the fundamentals then add the bells and whislles.

 

I agree also that it would be nice to have a one-button push that would go back to the start, but there actually is a pretty easy way to get back to the beginning of a show currently being recorded. Just hit the DVR button, select the program being recorded, and click on "Play from Start." You can do this over and over, and if you have been recording for a fairly long time it is much quicker than rewinding. And any time you are watching an early part of a program currently recording and want to get to the current position, just hit the "FiOS TV" button.

 

Unfortunately some of these techniques are not documented, or not documented very well. I have found it never hurts to just try pushing buttons to see what happens.

 

__________________________________
Justin
Verizon FiOS TV, Internet, and phone
IMG 1.6.2, Build 08.58
Keller, TX 76248

Contributor iamhe
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Posts: 6
Registered: ‎04-25-2009
Message 16 of 21
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Hi, Justin -- thanks for your response.

 

I wasn't lamenting that there wasn't a one-button push for jumping to the beginning of a show.  I was lamenting that the very functionality you just described (DVR button->select program->play from start) doesn't work ... well, sometimes it does, but other times not.

 

For example, New Yankee Workshop is recording right now.  I selected the show and chose menu option "Watch now".  I'm now tuned in to the episode.  If I hit the Info button twice, I get a menu with options Stop Playing, Play From Start, Stop Recording.  So far, so good.

 

Then, I changed the channel to an episode of Miracle Planet (NYW continued recording in the background) and started recording it.  If I hit the Info button twice on that show, the menu items are  Watch Now, Cancel This Recording, Record Series, Record Series with Options, Upcoming Shows, Exit.  Then, if I hit the DVR button and select the show, the menu items are Play, Stop Recording, Program Information.  No Play From Start option exists.  for that show, but the option is available for NYW; it continues to show the set of menu items I indicated earlier.

 

Finally, if I switch back to NYW,  the menu items for each show stay as I just described:  NYW gets a Play From Start option, while Miracle Planet does not. 

 

Two shows recording, two different sets of menu items.  Nothing about that is intuitive or makes the least bit of sense, at least to me.  Unfortunately, this is simply one example of many issues which, taken collectively, make for a frustrating user experience.

 

Of the three DVRs I have used, Verizon's implementation provides the worst usability by a long shot ... in my opinion.   But perhaps the most frustrating aspect to that:those usability issues are probably all easy to fix.  I hope they do before they even think about implementing PiP.

Platinum Contributor III Platinum Contributor III
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Message 17 of 21
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Did you actually choose the Play option (not the Play from Start) when that happened? If so, what did you see? See below.... 

 

OK, I am not going to totally try to replicate your results. But I just started recording two programs, hit the DVR button, selected one of the programs, and was given several choices, one of which was Play. When I selected that, it started playing from the beginning. Then I switched to the other program and hit DVR, selected that program, this time I think I was given the choice to play from the beginning rather than play. But I went through the exercise multiple times, and no matter which option I was presented with, play or play from the beginning, it always started playing from the beginning.

 

I don't know why it works the way it does for me, but I suggest you actually try it even if it just says play. Even though sometimes the bar seemed to indicate it was at the current position, it really was playing from the beginning.

 

And finally, I find the Verizon DVR to be excellent, records everything I set it to, reliable playback, has all of the functions I need and want, no usability issues for me (except for the terrible, inaccurate Guide data). One of my sons has a Dish DVR, the Verizon DVR runs circles around that in my opinion. I have never had a DirecTV DVR, maybe it is better, but I don't want satellite, I have too many large trees in the direction I would have to point the antenna. And I had Charter Cable before FiOS, if you want a really, really bad experience try them.

 

Give it another try.

__________________________________
Justin
Verizon FiOS TV, Internet, and phone
IMG 1.6.2, Build 08.58
Keller, TX 76248

 

 

Message Edited by Justin on 04-25-2009 04:55 PM
Contributor iamhe
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Posts: 6
Registered: ‎04-25-2009
Message 18 of 21
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Hi,

 

OK, so I went to reproduce my steps to check out what you were saying.  Unfortunately, I cannot check it out right now.  Why?  Because I'm currently getting the "Play from Start" option on two concurrent recordings instead of just one!  I have no idea why I'm getting different results than earlier.  I am completely mystified by the menu choices that are offered.  I don't know, maybe I'm slow.  But if I am, I'm not alone ... all the more reason for Verizon to take some care to provide an intuitive, predictible user experience.  Providing menu items that sometimes says "Play" and other times says "Play from Start" and having them both restart a recording from the beginning ... that's not intuitive.  When you start a recording and then press the Info button, one of *three* different menus will be displayed.  It will be either 1.) a menu including a Play from Start option, 2.) a menu including a Play option, 3.) a menu with "Watch Now" and "Upcoming Shows" options.  If anyone can explain the how and why of how this all works, you will have my gratitude.

 

OK, I have a challenge for you!  :-)  As you are no doubt aware, the menu item "Upcoming Shows" will display a list showing a schedule of future broadcast dates for the currently-displayed show.  Handy feature.  My challenge is this:  start two recordings, and then navigate back to the first recording you started by pressing the DVR button and then selecting that recording.  Now, somehow find a way to list the Upcoming Shows for either one of those two recording programs.  Is it even possible to get that menu to appear?  If you report back that you did it, please tell me if you knew how to do it ahead of time, or if you had to figure it out ... and how long it took to figure it out!  Lest you don't already know:  is it possible?  Yes.  Intuitive?  Not so much.  (I didn't actually figure it out ... my wife did.)

 

But in all fairness, you're right, generally the DVR does what it's supposed to.  It records two shows simultanteously and doesn't mess them up too often, although it does from time to time.  (It did so tonight, causing me to have to power cycle it, but this doesn't happen often.)  So in terms of bug-free functionality, I'd give it a B+ or so.  In terms of usability however ... well, don't ask!  ;-)

Platinum Contributor III Platinum Contributor III
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Message 19 of 21
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I can't answer your questions, I don't know why the DVR does what it does. But since you now know at least how to get back to the start, can't you just use it? I do.....

 

As to what menus you get by hitting the Info button, it seems to depend on whether you are recording only one show or two, and which one you started recording first. I don't know why, but I have to say I don't care, I don't think I have ever hit the Info button on a channel I was recording, don't see any need for it.

 

As to the Upcoming Shows business, I have never used it. But if I wanted to do so while I am watching a show and recording it, all I would do is hit the Info button twice and go down to Upcoming Shows. Seems pretty easy to me, but again, I have never used it.

 

Look, I am not arguing with you, I think that the documentation is lacking and I agree that there are areas that may not work as intuitively as you and I might want. But just a little experimenting has enabled me to find most if not all of the functions I really care about, and for the rest, I guess I just really don't care.

 

I know you are frustrated, and I encourage you to slow down a little and just explore. Once you find the things you want and use them a few times, I think they will become intuitive, or at least fairly easy to remember. Any new device you get you are going to go through a learning curve, and the Verizon DVR is no different. But if you are really so frustrated with the Verizon DVR you just can't live with it, then you might consider buying a Tivo. Expensive, but people seem to love them, and they apparently have every functon ever known to man.

 

Obviously there are more issues here than I can address, so I will bow out. I thought from your first post that I had the easy answer, apparently not. Good luck.

 

__________________________________
Justin
Verizon FiOS TV, Internet, and phone
IMG 1.6.2, Build 08.58
Keller, TX 76248 

Silver Contributor IV
Silver Contributor IV
Posts: 585
Registered: ‎10-22-2008
Message 20 of 21
(4,863 Views)

Reaper wrote:

KenAF is always saying that the Motorolla hardware won't support this, that or the other (16:9 guide, external hard drives, PIP, etc...) due to a lack of adequate memory. His argument usually is essentially that no one else is doing it with this equipment so FiOS can't either. I don't believe that for a minute. Software solves a lot of problems and there are always smarter ways to get it done.

 

The hardware seems fine to me. With the right development effort, I'm sure that Verizon could make PIP work.


That's not my argument at all.  I just point out that no one is doing it so people don't unfairly assign blame to Verizon or its engineers.

 

If the 6416 had more memory, it might be able to support PIP.  But such is impossible on the 7216, regardless of the memory.  The Broadcom BCM7401 CPU in the 7216 only has a single decoder, so it can only decode one video stream at a time.  No firmware or software can change that.

 

Now, the [lack of] 16:9 guide is not a hardware limitation, but a firmware limitation.  Verizon could address that at some point.

Message Edited by KenAF on 04-26-2009 01:57 AM
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