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FifthE1ement
Tech Nut

join:2005-03-16
Fort Lauderdale, FL

[Rant] Comcast shouldn't be given a pass!

Comcast Customers,

Think about all the commercials you've seen lately about TV services: ATT has a box which is wireless, which means you can basically put your TV anywhere throughout your home even if there is no outlet. Dish has the Hopper which allows you to Sling your TV signal anywhere, record 6 shows at once, and automatically skip commercial. DirecTV has the genie which allows 5 shows to be recorded at once and only a central box is needed so you don't have to have boxes everywhere in your house. Most of these also have show recommendations based on what you watch and how often.

Now let's look at Comcast. They have the X1 in about 2% of their customer base and for most they limit it to new customers. Lets say everyone had the X1, LOL what a joke. Navigate to the Comcast page for the X1 and this is their big reveal, "Faster Search, Last 9 shows and channels, Xfinity OnDemand, Sports App, X1 remote (phone tablet control)". Just about everything in that list can be done on their normal DVR's. You have to view the FAQ to see it can only record two shows while watching a third. Welcome to the 90's anyone? I mean on the X1 you can't even go a day ahead in the guide normally? The X1's bugs are too numerous to count but why? You don't hear about device debilitating bugs on the the Hopper or Genie? The Comcast/Xfinity X1 (Xcalibur its IPTV project codename from 2008) has been in development for so long with such poor results! Comcast please fire the team and start over!

The news story about them being one of the top four worst companies in America is not wrong. There are numerous topics on this site and others of customers who call to complain or that have an issue, which are told basically, "Take it or leave it". Comcast has such a bad reputation that they changed their name! Comcast only made the change from the Comcast brand name to Xfinity as their brand was at an all-time low! Comcast has grown so large they no longer car if users leave, complain, or trash their reputation.

How does the largest cable provider in the US get away with screwing their customers daily? I could also add they are doing everything to stop their customers from getting what they pay for, from blocking HBO Go on Roku/Samsung devices, blocking Showtime Anywhere, not joining Netflix Open Connect (for free mind you with free hardware), removing HD and other premiums (HBO/Showtime/Starz) to force users to OnDemand (which doesn't have 1/10th of the content of the real channels), removing ClearQAM (so they can force box fees) and they only removed the internet bandwidth caps when they took heat for not counting data against the caps when using the Xfinity app over the Xbox 360. But the caps will return and we know why, to stop competing providers like Netflix, Amazon, Crackle and Redbox. I think the Watchathon and speed upgrades are Comcast trying to improve their brand name without tackling the real problems: lack of innovation, anti-competitive behavior, customer abuse and high prices with multiple yearly price hikes.

What is going on at Comcast? Their normal "non-X1" DVR's are circa 1999 and they're inferior to any competing product. But that's the thing isn't it, they aren't competing? In most areas customers have no choice but Comcast so why bother to innovate or push the limits? Don't take my word for it, compare for yourself:

Comcast/Xfinity X1: »xfinity.comcast.net/x1/
Comcast/Xfinity Anyroom DVR: »info.xfinity.com/Portal/content/···dvr.aspx
Comcast/Xfinity "normal" DVR & Guide (circa 1999, lol): »www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=···&cad=rja
Dish Hopper: »www.dish.com/technology/hopper/
DirecTV Genie: »www.directv.com/technology/genie
AT&T U-verse Wireless Receiver: »www.att.com/u-verse/explore/wire···iver.jsp
AT&T U-verse Total Home DVR: »www.att.com/u-verse/explore/tota···-dvr.jsp

/RANT

5TH
--
"The relationship between what we see and what we know is never settled..."

SpHeRe31459
Premium
join:2002-10-09
Sacramento, CA
kudos:2
said by FifthE1ement:

Dish has the Hopper which allows you to Sling your TV signal anywhere, record 6 shows at once, and automatically skip commercial. DirecTV has the genie which allows 5 shows to be recorded at once and only a central box is needed so you don't have to have boxes everywhere in your house.

While I certainly agree with your comments there are two issues with your comparisons...
You've bought the hype of these two providers...

With Dish, you cannot really record any 6 things at once. It only has three tuners. The 6 comes from the prime time feature which records the whole transponder frequency which carries the four main broadcast networks (NBC, ABC, CBS, FOX). If you want something that is not part of these you're back to having 3 tuners.

Yes DirecTV can really record 5 things at once, but it doesn't magically transmit them to other TVs. There are indeed client boxes needed for the other TVs, however they are quite small. Their newest TV ads imply that you don't need a box at all, but there's fine print at the bottom of the screen every time they make that claim. The only way to get around needing a box is if you have an RVU enabled SmartTV from Samsung and a select group of 2013 Sony TVs now have an RVU client too.

Comcast even has an answer for a smaller client box too, but they aren't using them yet. Which is getting pretty annoying. The X1 platform can have tunerless IP clients (not unlike the Dish Joey or TiVO Mini) they're called Xi3, and Comcast has yet to deploy one. So there's another rant, Comcast has the ability to compete with these issues, but isn't yet.

Also you missed a pretty big X1 grievance, the Pace X1 box has 6-tuners, only 3 are enabled currently. So it actually can compete with the sat providers, but Comcast for unknown reasons has gimped it.
Other smaller Cable MSOs are shipping Arris Moxie based whole home DVR solutions with a 6-tuner main DVR right now. So it's not just satellite or U-verse that Comcast is running behind.

radiocolin

join:2013-01-29
reply to FifthE1ement
They are definitely slacking on all of these things. Also look at all the providers with Internet access to your channel lineup like TWC on the Roku, Verizon and TWC on iPad, etc.


ninjadude

join:2002-01-06
Aurora, IL
reply to FifthE1ement
I really DON'T want to move my TV all over the house. For what possible reason would I lug my valuable flat screen all over (or let children!). The ads from att are just plain stupid.

Comcast is NOT "screwing" their customers. We get a service. And millions are very happy with it. The biggest provider will invariably have the largest number of complaints. But also the most satisfied customers. If you don't like it, you are certainly free to sign up with an alternative.

What you really seem to be is a troll that works for a Comcast competitor.

and no I don't work for Comcast.

RalphKramden

join:2007-01-10
Newtown, PA
reply to FifthE1ement
Guess you'll be canceling...


FifthE1ement
Tech Nut

join:2005-03-16
Fort Lauderdale, FL

1 edit
said by RalphKramden:

Guess you'll be canceling...

RalphKramden actually I won't. I have no choice. U-Verse is not available in my area, dishes aren't allowed where I live so I'm stuck other than cutting the cord completely which will be impossible with Comcast's caps. I know they are off now but they will turn them on soon. I do have Netflix, Amazon Instant and RedBox Instant. When the 250GB cap was up I would almost reach is monthly. I only have two people in my house so I feel sorry for big families and those using more then one device.

SpHeRe31459 you and radiocolin are the only ones who actually added to the conversation. SpHeRe31459 I know about the tuner capabilities but I doubt they will never unlock them. Plus I was going on about what they currently have. But let's be honest, what is taking Comcast so long? I think the real reason they gimped the other 3 tuners is that they can't get the first three working right. The X1 is a joke compared to competitors guides and devices. I would like to have the X1, bugs and all, over the iGuide. But I doubt it will ever come to my area unless you have the Pace box. They say it will hit all DCX models and above but I don't see that happening for years (probably until 2015). Hell I'd be happy with the On-Screen Guide 2.0, which is also in my area but limited to users with Anyroom DVR. Why not push out On-Screen Guide 2.0 to all boxes until On-Screen Guide 3.0 X1/2/3 are ready, lol.

Also the guides I think are sometimes more important that the devices themselves. If the Comcast guide looked like Netflix so many more people would have an easier time finding shows to watch. Also older people would find it easier to navigate. The iGuide is a decade old navigation system and it is a joke. You should see the face of a dish user or directv user watching a Comcast subscriber messing with their guide. I've gotten teased about it, lol. The guide isn't the end all be all for me but navigating OnDemand is a horror. Something needs to be done ASAP as that mess of menus is something the US government looked like it came up with. OnDemand is the most unintuitive menu system I've EVER SEEN! No REALLY I've had an easier time navigating a DOS prompt!

ninjadude, ...? Who said anything about rolling your TV around your house? That is simply one example of a million for a wireless box. What about if you have a TV and don't want any messy wires ruining the look? How about if you don't have a cable outlet in a room and don't want to pay the money to have one installed. How about if you are having a party and need to move your TV outside or some place in your home more central. My friend has one on his deck outside and that way no wires or mess. I've spent enough time on you.

5th
--
"The relationship between what we see and what we know is never settled..."

rody_44
Premium
join:2004-02-20
Quakertown, PA
Reviews:
·Comcast

1 edit
reply to FifthE1ement
Count me in the who really cares crowd. I watch tv to watch tv not look at some fancy guide. I also have the roku box like you. Have to say i hate the netflix interface. The only thing i find of any use is the instant que. Who the hell wants to see all the because you watched a you will probably like b to z. I watch tv to watch tv not to spend half the time on the guide.

As far as you not having any choices, sure you do. The house across the street from me is for sale. Move there and you will have comcast, fios and satellite as providers and have choices of any of the features you want.


mikedz4

join:2003-04-14
Weirton, WV
reply to FifthE1ement
Count me in as a person who is sick of the iguide and can't wait for the guide 3.0 to arrive or the x1 to arrive.

nokiatech

join:2000-10-18
Stuart, FL
reply to FifthE1ement
Where exactly do you live that a Dish isn't allowed?

GTFan

join:2004-12-03
Not really seeing the issue here - get a Tivo Premiere 4 and a couple of Minis, problem solved. Or roll your own Win7 HTPC with a couple of Xboxes. Yes, it costs more upfront but that's the price you pay for getting a 4-tuner whole home box that just works. And it will pay for itself in 3 years or less vs. renting a DVR and a couple of STBs.

Everyone knows that Comcast ships the lowest common denominator DVR to its customers (including the old Moto 3400/6400 dogs) because that's the cheap way out to maximize your profit. The answer is to ignore their DVR junk and get your own.


mikedz4

join:2003-04-14
Weirton, WV
reply to nokiatech
some home owners authorities and apartments don't allow dishes or antennas.
Plus maybe his neighbor's trees block his view of the satellite or he lives in a wooded area.

chadb97

join:2009-07-14
Osceola, IN

1 recommendation

reply to FifthE1ement
I had similar complaints, but I did just what Gtfan suggested. I was sick of looking at the '90'sish iguide, I was sick of paying $40/mo. in equipment charges, so I ponied up and bought Tivo premiere xl4, and 1 tivo mini. (I'll be buying another tivo mini once they update the mini's to use dynamic tuner allocation.) I'm a triple play customer, so I was also spending $7/mo. for my emta modem. Well I'm pleased to report that I bought an Arris TM822g on Amazon, and once I got it I called comcast and both internet and phone were activated within 15 minutes (that's after being on hold for 30 minutes waiting for a rep to pick-up). Now all I have is my flat trip-play package cost each month. No more renting for me. In addition to that the Tivo works and LOOKS great. At least with Comcast you have the option of using your own equipment. You don't have that luxury with Directv, Dish, or at&t u-verse.

Again, I agree with almost every gripe you made, but I chose to take matters into my own hands and fix it.

nokiatech

join:2000-10-18
Stuart, FL
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to mikedz4
said by mikedz4:

some home owners authorities and apartments don't allow dishes or antennas.
Plus maybe his neighbor's trees block his view of the satellite or he lives in a wooded area.

His HOA can pound sand.
»www.fcc.gov/guides/over-air-rece···ces-rule

gustavenla68

join:2011-02-24
Carlisle, PA
said by nokiatech:

said by mikedz4:

some home owners authorities and apartments don't allow dishes or antennas.
Plus maybe his neighbor's trees block his view of the satellite or he lives in a wooded area.

His HOA can pound sand.
»www.fcc.gov/guides/over-air-rece···ces-rule

Also the apartment can not block you from installing a temporary dish that is not in common areas.
Expand your moderator at work


FFH5
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5
reply to gustavenla68

Re: [Rant] Comcast shouldn't be given a pass!

said by gustavenla68:

said by nokiatech:

said by mikedz4:

some home owners authorities and apartments don't allow dishes or antennas.
Plus maybe his neighbor's trees block his view of the satellite or he lives in a wooded area.

His HOA can pound sand.
»www.fcc.gov/guides/over-air-rece···ces-rule

Also the apartment can not block you from installing a temporary dish that is not in common areas.

All true. But you may still not get sat at your apartment if your apartments on wrong side of building and your balcony can't see the satellite.

rody_44
Premium
join:2004-02-20
Quakertown, PA
Reviews:
·Comcast

4 edits
In that case simply move to the other side of the building. Is it really comcasts fault that you moved to the wrong side of a apartment complex. Better yet move in to somewhere where it isnt a issue at all. If the guide and such is that much of a issue would you not check that shit out before signing the lease? Is it really comcasts fault at@t wont offer you service. Really i mean since when is it one companies responsibility to make everyones service available to you.

Is it impossible for a main dish to be installed on your building and running coax thru the building to service every unit. (of course it is after all comcast did it). But again its comcasts fault that dish or at@T or direct wont do it. Comcast did what they had to do to offer you the service. It isnt comcasts fault other companies wont do it. Its especially not comcasts fault that you moved in somewhere where the guide was so important that you didnt even check. Never to late to move tho.

Since your main gripe seems to be at@t guide and directs tuners being so much better why are you not lobbying to have a direct dish installed to service your building instead of griping about comcasts guide. Lots of highrises in philly have dishes installed for that purpose. Any building can get direct tv its just a matter of if direct wants to do the necessary work to make it happen.

yhp

join:2006-12-27
Philadelphia, PA

1 edit

1 recommendation

I always love this argument:

"Comcast doesn't have a monopoly where you live because you can always change where you live."


fuziwuzi
Not born yesterday
Premium
join:2005-07-01
Atlanta, GA

1 edit

1 recommendation

said by yhp:

I always love this argument:

"Comcast doesn't have a monopoly where you live because you can always change where you live."

It is always the customer's fault. Always. SMH
--
Teabaggers: Destroying America is Priority #1
Expand your moderator at work


FifthE1ement
Tech Nut

join:2005-03-16
Fort Lauderdale, FL

1 edit
reply to rody_44

Re: [Rant] Comcast shouldn't be given a pass!

said by rody_44:

In that case simply move to the other side of the building. Is it really comcasts fault that you moved to the wrong side of a apartment complex. Better yet move in to somewhere where it isnt a issue at all. If the guide and such is that much of a issue would you not check that shit out before signing the lease? Is it really comcasts fault at@t wont offer you service. Really i mean since when is it one companies responsibility to make everyones service available to you.

Is it impossible for a main dish to be installed on your building and running coax thru the building to service every unit. (of course it is after all comcast did it). But again its comcasts fault that dish or at@T or direct wont do it. Comcast did what they had to do to offer you the service. It isnt comcasts fault other companies wont do it. Its especially not comcasts fault that you moved in somewhere where the guide was so important that you didnt even check. Never to late to move tho.

Since your main gripe seems to be at@t guide and directs tuners being so much better why are you not lobbying to have a direct dish installed to service your building instead of griping about comcasts guide. Lots of highrises in philly have dishes installed for that purpose. Any building can get direct tv its just a matter of if direct wants to do the necessary work to make it happen.

rody_44, I moved in to my condo over 12 years ago, the Comcast guide (iGuide) was good when I moved in, in 2001, but I expected after a decade it would have been upgraded?! Anyone else?

Our Condo doesn't allow dishes. Period. My sun room doesn't face the direction necessary to get satellite (I believe the South?). They have no choice to allow it if your screen/sun/porch room faces the correct direction.

I do like the idea of Tivo's but until OnDemand is available over them in my area I'll have to wait it out. The best part is if Comcast released their Samsung TV app I could leave now. Or if they released the Samsung HBO Go app rights, or Max Go. I mean if Comcast wasn't holding everything back they'd be a great company! Right guys!?

5th
--
"The relationship between what we see and what we know is never settled..."

rody_44
Premium
join:2004-02-20
Quakertown, PA
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to FifthE1ement
And the fact your condo doesnt allow dishes is comcasts fault. Again any building can get a dish and run the coax thruout the building. Its not comcasts fault your building doesnt allow dishes and its not comcasts fault that no dish cares enough to service you.


cypherstream
Premium,MVM
join:2004-12-02
Reading, PA
kudos:3
reply to FifthE1ement
I think the X1 looks visually to be the nicest looking way to navigate TV (recorded, live and on demand). It seems pretty snappy and apple like in the video's I've seen. But apparently with the really LONG mega thread over at the comcast forums, it's riddled with bugs. They are too dependant on the whole "cloud" architecture. One server issue can affect thousands of people from viewing recordings, because I guess the indexing data or something is stored on the server.

I moved out of a Comcast area a few years ago so I'll never experience X1 unless I move again. I ended up with DirecTV (not the genie) but the whole home DVR. Equipment fee's are better because the DVR fee is per account. With cable usually its something like $16.95 per DVR so say you have 4 DVR's wow that really adds up. With DirecTV if you have 1 DVR or 4 DVR's, the DVR fee is the same. You just pay the $6 /month mirroring fee (think of it like a family plan cell phone, each phone added to the plan costs $x to get on the network).

With the Genie, say you have an RVU TV, the data only comes through the Ethernet port. Wifi is not supported, but maybe some day it will when 802.11ac becomes standard. Most people do not have ethernet jacks where they have their TV.. just people like myself or other techs on this forum may have punched down jacks throughout their home. So in 99% of the case even the RVU TV will have a small DECA box velcro'd to the back which is basically a MOCA to Ethernet box (DECA is MOCA but on frequencies down like 450-650 MHz since D* uses the higher frequencies for the dish). This little cigarette box sized device still requires power. The C31's and C41 RVU clients are only a little bigger, but they are slow from what I heard. The whole GUI is run from the Genie and bitmap copied to the RVU client. There is no hardware acceleration / compression / etc in the client. It's very simple to save cost.

The hopper is a neat concept. I'm not sure I like the interface, something rubs me the wrong way about it. I would have to use it to see, but it looks very fast. In fact Dish Networks track record is that their recievers have always been faster than DirecTV, and that's true. Every box they issue uses Broadcom CPU's so they can optimize the software for it. DirecTV contracts multiple manufacturers like Pace, Samsung, Humax, and others. So they have more of a generic "runtime" abstraction layer so each cpu be it Broadcom, Conax, ST Micro, etc... can still run the same "look" guide and the OS can be developed once but deployed many. Though this process makes the system slower.

Now cable in my area is Service Electric and they still don't even have multiroom. They are on I-Guide A27 and I'll have to pass on them for TV. First off there is only 1 HD for each premium so that's a con. Secondly the HD channels are on weird numbers and I-Guide doesn't have HD-Auto Tune like Passport, DirecTV or Dish Network. I like how I can just type in a number on DirecTV and boom, it's in HD. Nothing special to train guests like the inlaws, mother, wife, etc...

I've known some good people who worked for Comcast but most of them all left. I think the company is just too big to make any swift technological changes. David does beat Goliath every time. Even in the case of my local provider, Service Electric... I think they have about 130 HD channels way before the neighboring Comcast system ever had that many. To this day they still have some HD that Comcast misses. A private run company is easier to make decisions than a massive entity that has shareholders to worry about. A buddy of mine who works there says they are evaluating different multiroom solutions. So who knows if they will go Moxi, I-Guide, Tivo Premiere Q (like RCN/Suddenlink), or something else.

I hear you though. I'm on your side. I'm glad that I have DirecTV. While not 100% perfect (absolutely NO provider is)... it is close to it for my needs.


mikedz4

join:2003-04-14
Weirton, WV
are you saying that the genie needs a Ethernet cable for internet access or does it do wifi for that?


cypherstream
Premium,MVM
join:2004-12-02
Reading, PA
kudos:3
HR34 genie (the big box) can get Internet from its Ethernet port, or over the coax if Ethernet is injected via a DECA box from somewhere else.

The new HR44 genie (very small DVR) has built in wifi and can get the coax network connected to your data network through wifi or Ethernet.

If you have an RVU TV, RVU signals come in over the TV's Ethernet port. So if you do not have an Ethernet jack at the TV, you have to use a little DECA box to pull the network signal off the coax and present an Ethernet jack so you can connect your RVU Smart TV to the network.

A genie client (C31/C41) has a coax connection and talks over the network over it.

If your like me and have Ethernet run at each outlet, then yeah an RVU smart TV is box less. Most people do not have Ethernet run everywhere so you will need some kind of box. Either Genie client or coax to Ethernet DECA media converter. Either way the $6 mirroring fee applies.
Expand your moderator at work


mikedz4

join:2003-04-14
Weirton, WV
reply to cypherstream

Re: [Rant] Comcast shouldn't be given a pass!

I live in an apartment so no unfortunately there isn't Ethernet everywhere
Expand your moderator at work

ctggzg
Premium
join:2005-02-11
USA
kudos:2
reply to FifthE1ement

Re: [Rant] Comcast shouldn't be given a pass!

said by FifthE1ement:

You have to view the FAQ to see it can only record two shows while watching a third. Welcome to the 90's anyone?

"Only" two? And what do the 90s have to do with anything? Are you implying that in another 10 years, DVRs should record 20 shows at once? Why?

SpHeRe31459
Premium
join:2002-10-09
Sacramento, CA
kudos:2
reply to mikedz4
said by mikedz4:

I live in an apartment so no unfortunately there isn't Ethernet everywhere

But that's what MoCA is for, DirecTV already has you covered with their DECA boxes. No big deal.