ABB Going Switched Digital Video and/or digital in 2014?
In the Johnstown area, I am very confused as to what is going on with the video services.
I have a family member and a few friends totally confused on whats going on.
The family member wants to get Basic Cable (Non-Value) but was told it's going digital and she only has a single analog TV. Also how does the deposit system work, she cancelled cable and wants it back, and they said she could have to put a $100+ deposit down.
Also my other friends all have Value service and they are wondering if they will keep the analog for those channels or going digital.
For SDV I read online you have to have a "two-way" box that basically "requests" the channel to be sent to you, basically like video-on-demand. Yet I also heard ABB is just going to convert the cable to digital and only require a digital reciver TV.
ABBJason (who seems to really know this stuff) or someone similar, please explain this stuff in greater detail? (I am basically my family/friends tech and they look at me for this info).
On ABB's website, they only sell digital service, and have done so for years. The only place that analog lived on is for people who visited an ABB office to sign up.
I've never heard of deposits except for cell phones where they do credit checks. ABB doesn't do credit checks, to my knowledge. If they're asking for a deposit, either your family member didn't pay off a bill in the past or has bad credit.
ABB has been saying that they're going to do something with the Altoona/Johnstown system for 2+ years now, I'll believe it when I see it.
Thank you osravens. Mainly everybody is dying to know if the analog itself is going to be removed or remain simulcast for a long while. That basically sums it all up.
|reply to redpenguin |
Analog isn't going away in Altoona/Johnstown. There is a certain segment of the population that pays for basic cable and it needs to remain analog for them for the foreseeable future. SDV was originally slated for 2013 but was pushed to 2014. Other areas have switched or may be switching to digital, which does require a digital box. My understanding (I don't work in the dept. that primarily deals with tv) is when they switch an area they offer customers two boxes at no charge. These are not the same as the normal cable boxes that Digital Value and up customers get, they're just digital tuners basically.
SDV will probably require a cable box for the channels that get removed. Basically some channels get move to a transmit on demand status. In order to get a channel that is SDV, you have to have a device capable of two way communication. Most tv tuners, even digital ones, only receive signals, not send them. The real question for your family member is will any of the channels they watch in the value tier get moved to SDV? I don't know at this time unfortunately. This is something that the company is generally good about addressing, if we force you to have equipment they generally offer a couple for no additional charge. None of this is set in stone, I really am not sure what Atlantic Broadband is going to do yet, other than SDV is still the plan to my knowledge. The above is basically a more detailed explanation of how SDV works.
As for credit checks and deposits, I don't handle those things, so I can't speak to that. I would recommend you call customer service for further info.
From the ABB perspective, there's no incentive to continue analog signals. It eliminates theft of basic cable, reduces truck rolls and the need for traps, and frees bandwidth to sell more expensive programming tiers and HD channels. Over time, you can turn the need for digital equipment into a revenue stream.
Just about every company has had little issue or trouble killing off analog cable once and for all, I don't know why ABB is so insistent on keeping antiquated technology alive.
I don't know what they're waiting on in Altoona/Johnstown to do anything, I would think they have to be hemorrhaging subscribers left and right to the dishes due to high prices and the lack of offerings, plus the general trend for most legacy cable companies to be losing customers right now. I know they've been losing a ton here in Cumberland, and that's with a lineup that's a little more competitive, and has some unique positioning with the increased local channels from 3 different markets.
ABBJason, do you know if the plans for Altoona/JTown are for requiring DTAs on all TVs or not?
Basically what I mean is, do you know if they plan to encrypt all digital simulcasts or the digital-only versions if they are shutting off the analog for this tier?
My buddy has an HDTV already and a ClearQAM capable TV tuner, and he would prefer not to get a CableCard or DTA for every single TV.
I am not sure what to tell him because ABB seems to make different decisions everywhere like Florida and Grasonville seem to have taken the non-forced DTA/CableCard route but some say Cumberland and I know Uniontown has not taken that route.
I don't know for sure, but my understanding is the choice to use SDV instead of just going all digital was to avoid requiring DTA's for everyone.
Oh ok, thank you.
Because my buddy and I, have seen the horror stories of Comcast and somewhat Time Warner, who apparently are currently giving customers major tech issues, bad picture, etc.
|reply to ABBJason |
Almost every company who started using SDV ended up going all-digital anyway, see Charter, Cablevision, Time Warner and Bright House.
Having an intermediary step only serves to make more customers angry, and still inconvenience them.
|reply to redpenguin |
It appears that ABB in JTown is going to also get into ADS or Analog-Digital Simulcasting.
Though, they must still be setting it up, as it doesn't appear that they have every channel setup to do this.
Also the various channels they did setup (Limited Basic) did take at least a week to work properly. (They were freezing, no sound on some at first, and some even had the wrong audio track).
It is to be seen if they are going to simulcast all of the Value channels or not.
|reply to redpenguin |
Not sure what's going on with ABB but they are offering TiVos which supposedly do not have an analo tuner, yet they don't seem to have fully simulcasted every single Value channel.
They already are sending advertisements out for TiVo service.
Not sure how TiVo folks will see all the channels then until they simulcast every single analog. (So far they mainly only have Limited Basic on simulcast, unless you count Insp).
Or is ABB going to put an analog tuner into their version of the TiVo just like they did with their digital boxes for years?
Page 24 says:
"You may be trying to access an antenna or analog cable channel. The TiVo T6 DVR, Tivo Mini, or TiVo Preview does not receive analog channels."