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Comcast Attacks Verizon Over HD Claims
Philadelphia war of words continues....
by Karl Bode 12:18PM Sunday Dec 07 2008 Tipped by GeekGirl1 See Profile
The past few weeks, we've been following Comcast's efforts to slow Verizon's entry into the cable giant's hometown market of Philadelphia, by warning city council that Verizon would only deploy to areas with the highest ROI -- and FiOSTV's entry into the market won't necessarily mean lower TV prices. Neither is untrue, but Comcast's pretense that they're concerned with either of those things is a bit of a stretch. Comcast's latest attempt to turn the Philly city council against the telco is to attack Verizon's HD claims, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer:
quote:
Comcast Corp. is attacking some of Verizon's pay-TV claims as misleading and irrelevant to consumers. More than 250 of Verizon's high-definition programming channels or other choices - out of a total of 1,057 - aren't real entertainment but program fillers on blow-drying hair, kissing, grilling a hamburger, folding a pillowcase, chopping garlic, and other mundane topics, Comcast says.
Again though, while true claims, Comcast has been just as guilty as every other carrier in regards to confusing "channels" and "choices" to inflate HD numbers. They're also not really in any position to be criticizing HD selection, considering that in Philly, they offer 37 HD channels while FiOSTV has more than 100.

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sansri88
digital is here
Premium
join:2005-12-17
New York, NY
kudos:1

lol

Comcast shouldn't be talking in the Freedom Region. They have 26 HD channels in NNJ and 37 in Philly..compared to the 100+ Verizon carries in both areas.

And like Verizon, I'd estimate that about the same proportion of Comcast's HD On Demand is the same crap as well.
rob316

join:2005-10-17
Carteret, NJ

2 recommendations

Re: lol

Comcast is quaking in their boots they know once FIOS hits their areas, the game is over and they will bleed subs.

dnoyeB
Ferrous Phallus

join:2000-10-09
Southfield, MI
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Comcast

Re: lol

Well, either that or drop their prices. The last thing they want is a price war. These companies almost collude to avoid it.

Are they going to simply allow subs to leave, or drop their prices?
--
dnoyeB
"Then said I, Wisdom [is] better than strength: nevertheless the poor man's wisdom [is] despised, and his words are not heard. " Ecclesiastes 9:16

Mike
Premium,Mod
join:2000-09-17
Pittsburgh, PA
kudos:1

1 edit
Pittsburgh, at least my part has 17 HD channels as a part of their whatever it is a month hd lineup and about 51 pay per view.

cypherstream
Premium,MVM
join:2004-12-02
Reading, PA
kudos:3

2 edits
Comcast sucks for HD. If your an HD Enthusiast, you do not want Comcast as your provider. For many of us though, we have no choice.

They do however make a good broadband internet / phone provider. HD is just not their specialty. Unless you live in one of those 'blessed' systems in center city Chicago, Boston, or Hershey.

They have a lack of consistency. Some systems have 60 HD channels, some have 20 HD channels. That's way to wide a window. But even the best system with 67 or so HD channels doesn't match Verizon's 100 or DirecTV's 100+. Time for them to pull a stick out of their arrogant ass.
reelbigfish

join:2002-06-06
Boston, MA

1 edit

Re: lol

Just to point out the huge variance, Comcast in Boston now has 80 HD channels.
Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1
Comcast could have more HD, but they are for some reason holding onto their analog and not going totally switched. and every time a cable company wants to go switched you get a few hundered crybabies saying its not right to require boxes. yet every pay video competitor to comcast requires a box for each set.
--
[65 Arcanist]Filan(High Elf) Zone: Broadband Reports

Jwobot

join:2002-08-14
Sterling Heights, MI

1 edit

1 recommendation

New HD

Hey comcast, how about you throw some new HD channels over here in Southeast Michigan.
EPS4

join:2008-02-13
Hingham, MA

How-to

Why is Comcast attacking Verizon for having on-demand How-to thingies? I seem to recall Comcast doing a lot of advertising of their own how-to on-demand programming. (Or was I subconsciously making it up?) Or is the difference that Comcast's isn't in HD?
tmc8080

join:2004-04-24
Brooklyn, NY

Get on the stick...

Verizon, will you start making some original HD programming that doesn't S U C K ! ! !

If nothing else, so Comcast can STFU!

FFH
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

Re: Get on the stick...

said by tmc8080:

Verizon, will you start making some original HD programming that doesn't S U C K ! ! !
All the talk about how many HD channels that Verizon or Comcast or DirecTV have is pretty unimportant right now IMHO. Except for about 2 dozen channels(including premium movie channels), all the extra HD channels are NOT showing HD content(either original or syndicated reruns). What they are showing in most cases is SD content that has been stretched or in letter-boxed 4x3 format.
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afiggatt

join:2007-07-12
Sterling, VA

Re: Get on the stick...

said by FFH:

All the talk about how many HD channels that Verizon or Comcast or DirecTV have is pretty unimportant right now IMHO. Except for about 2 dozen channels(including premium movie channels), all the extra HD channels are NOT showing HD content(either original or syndicated reruns). What they are showing in most cases is SD content that has been stretched or in letter-boxed 4x3 format.
Do you get the 100+ HD channels on Verizon (or DirecTV)? Yes, there is a lot of upconverted SD and some of the channels use Stretch-o-Vision, but just about all of the HD channels show some true HD programming. I have channel surfed a number of times through the dozens of Starz, Showtime, TMC, Encore, HBO HD channels and found HD is the rule, not the exception. (I don't subscribe to Cinemax). TMC probably has more SD (non-stretched) than the others. For the national cable channels, heck, I even seen some HD on Bravo HD and ABC Family HD. Of all the HD channels that Verizon added here last month, I think only HSN HD is 100% stretch-o-vision (and that reportedly gets fixed early in 09 when HSN fires up there revamped HD studio - for those who care about HSN).

The bottom line is that Verizon Fios now way out-strips Comcast in the number of live HD channels. Comcast may still have more HD VOD content, but Verizon has been adding HD VOD over time. Until Comcast can shut down the analog channels in each market and free up the bandwidth, they will badly trail Verizon and the satellite providers in the total number of live HD channels.
shark2k

join:2008-06-01
West Orange, NJ
said by FFH:

All the talk about how many HD channels that Verizon or Comcast or DirecTV have is pretty unimportant right now IMHO. Except for about 2 dozen channels(including premium movie channels), all the extra HD channels are NOT showing HD content(either original or syndicated reruns). What they are showing in most cases is SD content that has been stretched or in letter-boxed 4x3 format.
Except you do realize that the cable providers have no control over that, right? The stretch-o-vision and non-HD is on the networks side. The networks need to get more HD content and show more HD content as well as stop stretching 4:3 shows. They need to leave the stretching up to the viewers.

-Shark2k

FFH
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

Re: Get on the stick...

said by shark2k:

said by FFH:

All the talk about how many HD channels that Verizon or Comcast or DirecTV have is pretty unimportant right now IMHO. Except for about 2 dozen channels(including premium movie channels), all the extra HD channels are NOT showing HD content(either original or syndicated reruns). What they are showing in most cases is SD content that has been stretched or in letter-boxed 4x3 format.
Except you do realize that the cable providers have no control over that, right? The stretch-o-vision and non-HD is on the networks side. The networks need to get more HD content and show more HD content as well as stop stretching 4:3 shows. They need to leave the stretching up to the viewers.

-Shark2k
Yes, I do realize that it is the content providers that are putting out little amounts of true HD. But that was my point. All the boasting back and forth by the TV providers about how much HD they have really isn't that big a deal, given the dearth of real HD programming. Except for the primetime network schedules(ABC,NBC,CBS,Fox,&PBS) and the sports channels like ESPNHD & some premium movie channels, who really cares. I know some get ecstatic about a HD Food channel, but really for most people who cares.
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shark2k

join:2008-06-01
West Orange, NJ

1 recommendation

Re: Get on the stick...

said by FFH:

Yes, I do realize that it is the content providers that are putting out little amounts of true HD. But that was my point. All the boasting back and forth by the TV providers about how much HD they have really isn't that big a deal, given the dearth of real HD programming. Except for the primetime network schedules(ABC,NBC,CBS,Fox,&PBS) and the sports channels like ESPNHD & some premium movie channels, who really cares. I know some get ecstatic about a HD Food channel, but really for most people who cares.
Yeah, but it is nice to have all the HD channels available so when the HD content is put on those channels you already have it and don't need to be anxious to get it. I don't mind if an HD channel shows 4:3 stuff if that is how the film/show was shot (i.e. TBS should show Family Guy in 4:3 on the HD channel). I am more annoyed with the networks cropping movies (2.35:1 movie been shown in 1.78:1 to fill the screen). HD is nice, but I want to see it in HD as the director attended. At least having the HD channels means I'll get the HD version when it is aired.

-Shark2k
moonpuppy

join:2000-08-21
Glen Burnie, MD
said by FFH:

Yes, I do realize that it is the content providers that are putting out little amounts of true HD. But that was my point. All the boasting back and forth by the TV providers about how much HD they have really isn't that big a deal, given the dearth of real HD programming. Except for the primetime network schedules(ABC,NBC,CBS,Fox,&PBS) and the sports channels like ESPNHD & some premium movie channels, who really cares. I know some get ecstatic about a HD Food channel, but really for most people who cares.
How about Discovery HD Theater?
Oregonian2

join:2008-07-16
Beaverton, OR
said by FFH:

said by shark2k:

said by FFH:

All the talk about how many HD channels that Verizon or Comcast or DirecTV have is pretty unimportant right now IMHO. Except for about 2 dozen channels(including premium movie channels), all the extra HD channels are NOT showing HD content(either original or syndicated reruns). What they are showing in most cases is SD content that has been stretched or in letter-boxed 4x3 format.
Except you do realize that the cable providers have no control over that, right? The stretch-o-vision and non-HD is on the networks side. The networks need to get more HD content and show more HD content as well as stop stretching 4:3 shows. They need to leave the stretching up to the viewers.

-Shark2k
Yes, I do realize that it is the content providers that are putting out little amounts of true HD. But that was my point. All the boasting back and forth by the TV providers about how much HD they have really isn't that big a deal, given the dearth of real HD programming. Except for the primetime network schedules(ABC,NBC,CBS,Fox,&PBS) and the sports channels like ESPNHD & some premium movie channels, who really cares. I know some get ecstatic about a HD Food channel, but really for most people who cares.
It's important that the HD "channel" is there. Why should a channel bother creating HD material (esp. for those who aren't movie channels and are creating their own content) if there's nothing to do with it?

P.S. - Most movies aren't 4:3 to begin with, so that helps.

badtrip
I heart the East Bay
Premium
join:2004-03-20
Albany, CA
Well the # of HD channels certainly matters to me, especially in the premium channel tiers. Case in point: in my area Comcast offers 1 HD HBO and 1 HD Starz. On Dish, all my HBOs but one are offered in HD and all but 2 Starz are offered in HD. Both HD packages cost around the same (when I purchased them).

Further, I would much rather watch a clear strech-o-vision HD channel than the same channel compressed to hell on comcast. Too bad comcast cant run coal thru their compression algorithms, if they could they'd be able to corner the diamond market.
diskman

join:2000-01-21
Pasadena, MD
Thank you. SD stretched sucks. Let's get REAL HD content.

FreedomBuild
Well done is better than well said
Premium
join:2004-10-08
Rockford, IL

War on Words

Actions and actual customer experience out way any media propaganda. Talk about a Pot calling the kettle black aye.
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alchav

join:2002-05-17
Saint George, UT
Reviews:
·ooma

I told you Guys, Verizon FiOS is the Winner!

I don't think it's going to be easy for any TV Provider to compete with Verizon FiOS without FTTH. The Cable Companies are having a hard time with HDTV because of the other services, Phone and Internet, that are staining their Coax Cable Network. I think the Cable Companies were banking on DOCSIS 3.0, but this still requires upgrading their Cable Network and it won't give them the same bandwidth like Fiber.

swhitney2003
Premium
join:2003-06-13
NH

Re: I told you Guys, Verizon FiOS is the Winner!

Verizon isn't able to compete against cable on a large scale though. FiOS is nowhere near deployed to the amount of homes that cable is, this is why FiOS is not necessarily "the winner." Technology-wise, I believe they have a future proof technology that can be adapted quite easily. Now they just need the subscribers to reel in the dough.

Chasmn84

@comcast.net
FiOS is not the winner... last i checked cable is stealing more phone services from the phone companies than phone companies are stealing video from cable. Also Cable is going to be the #1 high speed internet provider by the end of the year. Plus Cable is turning most of the channel digital to get more room for HD while still providing more On Demand than anyone. On Demand is great and wouldn't trade it in for 100 hd channels. I can watch what i want when i want. why watch repeat movie channels and sports package hd channels when i can watch what ever i want!

jmn1207
Premium
join:2000-07-19
Ashburn, VA
kudos:1

Re: I told you Guys, Verizon FiOS is the Winner!

You don't have to give up your On Demand with FiOS. They have it too, but the menu guide is about 20x faster to navigate and it never crashes the set top box and makes you wait 5 minutes while it reboots. Also, you can actually effectively search for programming. I would already be halfway through an On Demand episode of Myth Busters with FiOS before I even found and started the same show on my Comcast On Demand service.

And for movies, I'd much rather have my FiOS options than my Comcast choices. The beauty of having so many HD channels for me, is having all of the premium movie channels in HD. I don't have just one HD HBO, which has no HD On Demand, I have 14 of them that are playing HD content. This goes for all of my premium movie channels. I have multiple choices to select from and all of them are in HD, not just one version.

All I can say is, let someone try FiOS for a week and then let them try cable for a week. I can't imagine anyone taking the cable service over the FiOS service after having a chance to try them both. I just left Comcast with the best they had to offer in TV and internet, and it's not even close to what I now have with FiOS in quality and satisfaction. It's a shame this kind of quality cannot be deployed any faster than it is, but it will destroy the competition where it is available.

cypherstream
Premium,MVM
join:2004-12-02
Reading, PA
kudos:3

Re: I told you Guys, Verizon FiOS is the Winner!

I wish I could get Fios.

HD on demands is great and all, but your right, by the time your halfway through a mythbusters episode, I'd just find it in Comcast ugly convoluted searchless menu system.

Berksdude007

@comcast.net
Fios is the winner where they are available, but their biggest problem is availability. I can't get Fios where I live, but believe me I would dump Comcast in a heartbeat if Verizon Fios was offered here.

Sure cable could turn most of their channels digital to get more room for HD, but they just aren't doing that fast enough.

aaronwt
Premium
join:2004-11-07
Woodbridge, VA
said by Chasmn84 :

FiOS is not the winner... last i checked cable is stealing more phone services from the phone companies than phone companies are stealing video from cable. Also Cable is going to be the #1 high speed internet provider by the end of the year. Plus Cable is turning most of the channel digital to get more room for HD while still providing more On Demand than anyone. On Demand is great and wouldn't trade it in for 100 hd channels. I can watch what i want when i want. why watch repeat movie channels and sports package hd channels when i can watch what ever i want!
That's just it. No ones On Demand has anywhere close to everything I want to watch. Most of what I want to watch is not available on any providers On Demand. So the more channels available the better so I can watch at my leisure with my seven High Definition TiVos.
Oregonian2

join:2008-07-16
Beaverton, OR
said by Chasmn84 :

FiOS is not the winner... last i checked cable is stealing more phone services from the phone companies than phone companies are stealing video from cable.
I suspect it's cell phones that are doing most of the phone-services-stealing, with landline phones not used at all.
Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1
cable should dump analog totally and go fully switched digital. if people dont like it they can get Wabbit ears or goto the competition which oh darn requires a box on every TV.
--
[65 Arcanist]Filan(High Elf) Zone: Broadband Reports
Oregonian2

join:2008-07-16
Beaverton, OR

Re: I told you Guys, Verizon FiOS is the Winner!

said by Kearnstd:

cable should dump analog totally and go fully switched digital. if people dont like it they can get Wabbit ears or goto the competition which oh darn requires a box on every TV.
Anyone looking at those analog channels won't be able to see anything with "Wabbit ears" in a couple months.
Oregonian2

join:2008-07-16
Beaverton, OR
said by alchav:

I don't think it's going to be easy for any TV Provider to compete with Verizon FiOS without FTTH. The Cable Companies are having a hard time with HDTV because of the other services, Phone and Internet, that are staining their Coax Cable Network. I think the Cable Companies were banking on DOCSIS 3.0, but this still requires upgrading their Cable Network and it won't give them the same bandwidth like Fiber.
I don't think that's true. I've FiOS 20/5 for internet (with TV available), but my TV provider (what you are specifically called out) is DirecTV (with three HD DVRs).

fifty nine

join:2002-09-25
Sussex, NJ
kudos:2
At 2 per QAM, 100 HD channels is 300MHz of bandwidth or 50 channels.

It's doable on cable if they'd just get rid of the analog and expand to 1GHz (and put DOCSIS from 860MHz to 1GHz).

In fact FiOS uses cable TV standards for their TV service. They are an 860MHz cable system.

cypherstream
Premium,MVM
join:2004-12-02
Reading, PA
kudos:3
I just got a piece of mail from DirecTV today. $19.99 for 12 months + 2 free HD or DVR upgrades, + Free installation + Free one year service coverage. It's 150 channels. You can step up to the movie channels for $24.95 a month for 12 months.

I surely would do this but there's no line of sight. Wish they would pre-screen based on line of sight before sending these tantalizing deals!
qworster

join:2001-11-25
Bryn Mawr, PA

Not to mention..

Not to mention that Comcast's HD quality is FAR inferior to that of FIOS.

Here: »www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthre···=1008271
longgone

join:2000-12-30
Culloden, WV

Re: Not to mention..

said by qworster:

Not to mention that Comcast's HD quality is FAR inferior to that of FIOS.

Here: »www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthre···=1008271
Wow, those Comcast HD PQ screenshots from the link makes it appear they have something in common with DirecTV.

SHABAZZ

join:2008-07-13
Seattle, WA

Four for Four...

Every market without two Telco carriers and two cable companies to pick from should be classified as having no competition.
EPS4

join:2008-02-13
Hingham, MA

Re: Four for Four...

That's not going far enough- there's no competition unless they're offering me services for free, with 35967290567 HD channels and 937690237902Gbps internet! Otherwise they're all colluding and need to have all executives thrown in jail and executed!

GeekGirl1
Premium
join:2007-01-28
Morrisville, PA
kudos:2

Public hearing scheduled for Thursday

Here's the link to the original article: »www.philly.com/inquirer/business···ims.html. If you only see the comments, click on the "print this" icon at the top of the story.

Philly residents should note that there's a public hearing scheduled for Thursday.

funchords
Hello
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-11
Yarmouth Port, MA
kudos:6

1 recommendation

Re: Public hearing scheduled for Thursday

said by GeekGirl1:

Philly residents should note that there's a public hearing scheduled for Thursday.
http://www.dslreports.com/r0/download/1279718~2a3866ad0fce6cfcf497595de01f1e3e/Comcast.jpg/thumb200.jpg
»Did Comcast Hire Public Stand-ins For Neutrality Hearing?

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More features, more fun, Join BroadbandReports.com, it's free...

max4224

@verizon.net

"Comcast Corp. is attacking some of Verizon's pay-TV claims"

What cajones. Comcast's TV commercials are so blatantly misleading I want to throw something through the TV. Comcast in my area had 24 HD channels AND NO MORE IN SIGHT. The day FIOS became available was like Christmas come early!

Harry Potter

@verizon.net

Comparison

I invite people to try this experiment. Try loading Verizon's website and then try loading Comcast's and see who wins. Comcast goes so slow its not even funny. I have FiOS and wouldn't switch back but I wanted to see just how bad it was and boy. Oh yea try running a traceroute to each and see how those compare.

Verizon wins NQA (No Questions Asked)

Max_Mosley

@comcast.net

Comcast Needs to STHU

Comcast needs to STHU before they embarrased their own SELF.

incognito_2u

join:2005-03-15
Malverne, NY

2 edits

Same Old same old........

Big business!!!! Business as usual! Did you expect anything different from these MEGA MONOPOLY'S!

Marketing 101: Sell the Sizzle, not the Steak!!!!!!
--

edit: spelling!
"I want my FiOS TV!"
tmc8080

join:2004-04-24
Brooklyn, NY
Reviews:
·ooma
·Optimum Online
·Verizon FiOS

HD screen format?!?

Standardize the program format! Either box 4:3 or (full screen)16:9, stop mucking about! And allow the tv viewer to choose whether to stretch 4:3 to f/s.

Hd's true format is 16:9 720p for common programming.. and 1080i 1080p for sports / movie programming sourced in HD. The cable industry should phase out non-hd programming. That stuff should be left to the ON-DEMAND side of the network (2009).. the future is HD. Time for the cable networks to convert completely over. To this end, Verizon needs to make their own cable HD channels... this was my point, since the industry isn't moving fast enough, now is a time to kill two birds with one stone.. MAKE YOUR OWN CHANNELS... have something to differentiate between FIOS programming and the rest... Something that's GOOD, that's exclusively on FIOS would be an excellent selling point. Right now they have nothing to brag about except internet. Upconverted HD Youtube!? Bah! The truth is not everything that people want to see looks good in HD.. that's why they allow resolutions as low as 480i (that's why they invented makeup to hide the wrinkles that show in HD).... Still, the future is 720p - 1080p so for better or worse.. they'll have to make it work! Can't see spending upwards of $200 for programming if one can literally download the 20-100 hours of programming they view each week... in the quality and format of THEIR CHOICE!

aaronwt
Premium
join:2004-11-07
Woodbridge, VA

Re: HD screen format?!?

said by tmc8080:

Standardize the program format! Either box 4:3 or (full screen)16:9, stop mucking about! And allow the tv viewer to choose whether to stretch 4:3 to f/s.

Hd's true format is 16:9 720p for common programming.. and 1080i 1080p for sports / movie programming sourced in HD. The cable industry should phase out non-hd programming. That stuff should be left to the ON-DEMAND side of the network (2009).. the future is HD. Time for the cable networks to convert completely over. To this end, Verizon needs to make their own cable HD channels... this was my point, since the industry isn't moving fast enough, now is a time to kill two birds with one stone.. MAKE YOUR OWN CHANNELS... have something to differentiate between FIOS programming and the rest... Something that's GOOD, that's exclusively on FIOS would be an excellent selling point. Right now they have nothing to brag about except internet. Upconverted HD Youtube!? Bah! The truth is not everything that people want to see looks good in HD.. that's why they allow resolutions as low as 480i (that's why they invented makeup to hide the wrinkles that show in HD).... Still, the future is 720p - 1080p so for better or worse.. they'll have to make it work! Can't see spending upwards of $200 for programming if one can literally download the 20-100 hours of programming they view each week... in the quality and format of THEIR CHOICE!
And that's the problem I can't download most of the programing I want to watch. Plus I only watch HD. I've been watching HD since Summer 2001, I have no desire to wacth SD if I can avoid it.

NickG

@lawmedia.net

Who needs a dozen Starzeses?

Here's what I don't get: if Verizon's list of 100 HD channels includes 8 Showtime HD channels, 12 HBO HD channels, etc. what good does that do me? I can only watch one of them at a time, the rest are just taking up bandwidth. I'd rather have all of those movies and shows on-demand and save that channel space for a bigger upstream channel. Am I missing something?

JahsDisciple
Living my life like it's golden
Premium
join:2007-07-07
Baltimore, MD
kudos:1

verizon has more less popular channels...

verizon has more hd channels but look at exactly what the extra channels are. comcast has more or the same in what most people look at such as sports, sporting events, good movies, etc.
--
"Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.