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Greg2600

join:2008-05-20
Belleville, NJ
reply to ViRGEdx

Re: Digital Transport Adapter Unboxing Photos

I can say unequivocally that most people only use the RF cables to connect to a TV. Only on HDTV's have they not, because you can't get HD without Component or HDMI. While I see Comcast putting the term "Bedroom" TV into their manual for this device, they are not treating it as such. Clearly the aim is for the many people who have no box whatsoever. In the past, all the providers have had no problem mandating STB's to receive channels, and later moving Premiums to digital to force you into Digital cable more or less. This is to satisfy those you currently have only Analog on one, maybe two TV's.

Here's my question though, if before you had just basic or expanded analog, not digital, and now get this box, will you get all the non-premium digital channels? Or will you have to be forced into buying expanded digital tier? This box does not de-encrypt so Comcast can't separate those packages anymore, no?


miscDude

@comcast.com
said by Greg2600:

Here's my question though, if before you had just basic or expanded analog, not digital, and now get this box, will you get all the non-premium digital channels? Or will you have to be forced into buying expanded digital tier? This box does not de-encrypt so Comcast can't separate those packages anymore, no?
My understanding is that these DTAs are designed, and marketed to fill that spot for the "extra" TV's a customer has. The idea is that there are a LOT of customers who have digital cable with a regular STB, but may have multiple TV's in the house plugged in to just straight analog to pick up the analog channels. With the Analog reclaimation projects they were doing, they were pissing off a large number of customers who suddenly would see thier bill increase dramatically for those extra boxes for each TV.

Customers who are currently analog only would be served by existing promotions like the Digital Starter (or new Economy services) that provide a single traditional box free for the year and give them access to VoD and music choice, but there was no such "free box" offers for existing Digital Classic/premier/premuim customers who already get the full service digital packages on a TV but actively used 3 or 4 additional TV's with regular analog cable. These DTA's would provide those TV's with the ability to keep those old "analog" channels as they move to digitial.

This is kind of supported by the pricing I've heard on the DTA's where you can get 1 or 2 free with an existing digital package and only maybe $1 for additional boxes.

If you figure your "average" digital customer only maybe has 1 digital outlet in the living room, but takes advantage of the analog cable in the kitchen, kids bedroom (Don't need to give the kids access to skinamax or PPV after all), or master bedroom, This allows them to continue receiving the same basic services with no increase in overall cost, and still allows the MSO to do the bandwidth reclaimation they want/need to do.

The Analog only customers there has been a steady effort to try and get them to at least an entry level digital service for quite awhile, and I don't see that strategy changing. (And with the recent announcements and launching of the Economy tier which includes a standard box, cheaper than your traditional analog expanded basic, that strategy isn't changing, it's just evolving).

Then you get those people with 8 tv's who complain about the analogs going away because they would need 8 boxes vs. the 2 they may have now. I'd say this is probably easily a minority of cable customers, and while they may have a valid argument with having a $60-$100 increase in monthly cost with traditional boxes, The $1 per extra after 2 boxes, that arguement loses a lot of teeth when you are looking at only an additional $4/mo. (if you can afford 8 tvs, $4 ain't gonna kill ya).

Joe12345678

join:2003-07-22
Des Plaines, IL
It's not the $1 per box it's the $6 - $7 per box plus the digital cable outlet fee and you should be able to buy the basic boxes not pay forever on a $50 box.

miscDude

join:2005-03-24
Kissimmee, FL
said by Joe12345678:

It's not the $1 per box it's the $6 - $7 per box plus the digital cable outlet fee and you should be able to buy the basic boxes not pay forever on a $50 box.
A "Standard" cable box costs much more than just $50. Pricing I've heard says that the cablecard (the decryption components) cost more than $50 alone, and that doesn't include the extra hardware needed in a standard box, plus the monthly guide licensing fees the MSO pays for the guide information on your cablebox. These are the boxes you pay $6-7 per box for (plus digital outlet fees....depending upon market).

The DTA's are the $50 "box's" that they are saying you can get 2 free with a digital package that includes a "standard" box, and then pay $1 per extra. I'm also going to assume that the digital outlet fee isn't going to be in effect for the DTAs since technically it's not a digital outlet in the traditional sense.

Hmmmm... Ya know, I'm thinking someone needs to put together a FAQ that includes some sort of (semi)official terminology to refer to the different box types now. With DTA's, Tuning resolvers, "Legacy boxes" (DCT2000s), standard boxes (Non-dvrs), DVRs, Advanced setop boxes, Tru2way/OCAP devices, TiVo's, etc etc etc.... It may not hurt to try and establish some sort of mutually agreed upon terminology so everybody knows exactly what type of box you are refering too. It could help eliminate some confusion for people.


sansri88
digital is here
Premium
join:2005-12-17
New York, NY
kudos:1
I'm up for doing that with other people that are more knowledgeable than me (like cypher, cabletool, yourself, etc).

miscDude

join:2005-03-24
Kissimmee, FL
said by sansri88:

I'm up for doing that with other people that are more knowledgeable than me (like cypher, cabletool, yourself, etc).
IMHO... someone who isn't as knowledgeable would probably be better to at least start the list. Why? because the goal would be to make it easy to understand, and those of use who know a lot more have a tendency to overthink or make things more complicated then they should be.

Part of the idea is to make it easier for newbies or casual people to know what we are talking about. The last thing we want would be to have more secret techy terms that make it harder for them to understand what's going on.


sansri88
digital is here
Premium
join:2005-12-17
New York, NY
kudos:1
Definitely true. We would want people to understand the boxes, not to be lost in a myriad of unknown cable terms.

Probably should take this discussion to another thread though, we're going a bit off topic with this.