DVD & Home Theater Gear Discuss DVD and Home Theater Equipment.

PPV TV episodes; worrying trend?

Old 11-08-05, 11:33 AM
  #1  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Triangle, NC, USA
Posts: 8,784
PPV TV episodes; worrying trend?

http://apnews.myway.com/article/20051108/D8DO98PO0.html

NEW YORK (AP) - CBS and NBC have announced deals to offer replays of prime-time programs for 99 cents per episode, shifting television toward a sales model that gained popularity with downloaded music.

CBS is teaming up with Comcast Corp. (CMCSA) and NBC with satellite operator DirecTV to offer the on-demand replays.

NBC Universal will offer commercial-free episodes of "Law & Order: SVU" and other shows to subscribers of DirecTV Group Inc. who use the satellite company's new digital video recorder.

Comcast's on-demand customers in some markets will be able to view "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,""NCIS,""Survivor" and "The Amazing Race" at their convenience.

Terms of the deals, which were announced Monday, were not disclosed.

"This is an incredibly exciting evolution for CBS and network television - video on demand is the next frontier for our industry," CBS Chairman Leslie Moonves said of the deal with Philadelphia-based Comcast, the nation's largest cable systems operator. CBS, which is owned by Viacom Inc. (VIAB), announced last week it would stream episodes of its show "Threshold" over CBS.com.

The Walt Disney Co.'s ABC network offers downloads of several programs, including "Desperate Housewives" and "Lost," for $1.99 each via iTunes software from Apple Computer Inc. (AAPL)

Less than three years ago, Apple helped spur the explosion of legally downloaded music with its iTunes Music Store and iPod portable players - the latest versions of which now play video.

Comcast's service will be available starting in January to customers in markets with a CBS owned-and-operated television station, which includes the nation's seven largest media markets. The episodes will be available as early as midnight following a broadcast and will include commercials.

The DirecTV agreement includes shows that air on NBC, USA, Bravo and the Sci-Fi Channel, including "The Office" and "Monk." Episodes of the shows will remain available for one week after their broadcast. NBC Universal is a unit of General Electric Co. (GE)

DirecTV, which is based in El Segundo, Calif., and controlled by the media conglomerate News Corp. (NWSA), began shipping its new DVR this week. The device uses interactive software from NDS Group Ltd., another News Corp. unit, and is designed to transition the company from dependence on similar devices made by TiVo Inc. (TIVO)

"We are talking to the other networks and hope to reach similar agreements soon," DirecTV spokesman Robert Marsocci said Monday.

The new DirecTV DVR comes with a hard drive that holds 160 hours of programming. One hundred hours are available for subscribers to record and store programs. The remaining 60 hours will be used by DirecTV to download programs that can be viewed on demand for an extra fee.
I don't have a problem with PPV per episode, in fact, I'm somewhat surprised that it's not bigger yet.
However, this is a somewhat worrying precedent.
If you have a DVR, you can simply say "record this show every time", and you've got it [true, with commercials, but you can FF].
I assume you can have digital boxes that offer On-Demand, both free and pay, without having a DVR box, and that might be the market they are going for; the people who aren't fanatical about their tv watching but would pay a buck for the hot watercooler show they missed last night.

But this new DVR, I don't like. I know there is some 'overhead' with any hard drive, but I don't think I'd like leasing or buying a DVR that I can only use less than 63% of its space.

Is this another step toward more intrusive DRM, or whatever it's called, where the 'broadcast flags' vastly limit what can be recorded for personal use? [I'm not even talking about burning stuff to DVD, or uploading to the internet--I'm talking about the 'Record every episode of this show' so that I can watch it at night instead of when it's on at 3 PM when I'm at work. Pure timeshifting.] And with current DVRs, you generally pay more for a larger hard drive--so this one has quite a large hard drive, but less than 2/3 of it can be directly by the consumer without additional cost.

And who/what decides what is on that 60 GB? Is it the 20 episodes the network/cable/sat company decide to push this week, so I have to pay for them to watch them, if I don't, then that space is wasted? Or do I have a little choice in the matter? My current [free] On-Demand is limited in selection, but as far as I know, it accesses it 'live' when I want to watch it, rather than storing it on the HD 'just in case.'
tonyc3742 is offline  
Old 11-08-05, 11:36 AM
  #2  
Moderator
 
Groucho's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Posts: 70,839
I have DirecTV now, and it currently doesn't offer any "On Demand" services. When they had Starz on Demand, that took up a portion of your DVR. I'm not sure how they could have things "On Demand" without storing it on your hard drive.
Groucho is offline  
Old 11-08-05, 11:44 AM
  #3  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Chew's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: South of Titletown
Posts: 18,628
Tailored, ad-free TV gains ground

CBS and NBC delivered another hammer blow to the traditional TV economic model on Monday by agreeing to let some Comcast and DirecTV customers pay 99 cents to watch certain hit shows on demand and ad-free.

Viacom's CBS struck a deal with Comcast that will make new episodes of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, NCIS, Survivor and The Amazing Race available to viewers who subscribe to its extra-cost digital service and live in markets served by network-owned CBS stations.

Comcast will offer the programs for 99 cents each shortly after they air on the West Coast. The reality shows, which typically don't do well in repeats, will be available all season. Dramas will be available only until the next new episode airs, but viewers with digital video recorders (DVR) can save copies. (Related: Some viewers don't want more TV.)

"This is a major breakthrough. It's a precedent," says Comcast CEO Brian Roberts. "We're moving to personalized television. That's the strategy Comcast has bet on."

CBS Chairman Leslie Moonves was equally upbeat. He says the video-on-demand (VOD) showings offer "an additional revenue stream without affecting the mother lode" from advertising.

NBC Universal reached similar terms enabling DirecTV to offer new episodes of Law & Order: SVU, Law & Order: CI, The Office, Monk, Surface and Battlestar Galactica.

Hours after they initially air, DirecTV will transmit them to the hard drive in homes that have receivers with the new DirecTV Plus DVR, which the company says will hit the shelves this week.

Viewers will be charged 99 cents to watch an episode as often as they wish for 24 hours. It will be wiped off the hard drive once the next episode of the show airs and cannot be saved on other devices.

"This isn't an acquisition model. This is more of a rental model," says NBC Universal Cable President David Zaslav.

The decision to charge 99 cents "wasn't scientific," he adds. "It's low enough to attract viewers, and it felt like an amount that's in balance" with payments for movies and other VOD programming.

The networks and distributors will split the revenue, but they declined to discuss financial terms.

If the split mimics most VOD deals programmers and distributors sharing proceeds equally it should pay off for the networks, even if some viewers skip the regularly scheduled airing and pay to watch an ad-free version.

That's because advertisers pay the equivalent of about 36 cents an hour per prime-time viewer, CBS research chief David Poltrack calculated last year.
http://www.usatoday.com/tech/news/te...-directv_x.htm
Chew is offline  
Old 11-08-05, 11:46 AM
  #4  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Triangle, NC, USA
Posts: 8,784
How much of your DVR did it take up? I think my is 120 GB or so, and while it's pretty full of stuff I have recorded, I get like 15 On Demand channels; I can't imagine they would, or can, store all of the offerings on the hard drive.
It might be different between satellite and cable, since with satellite you can't really send a signal 'up' to DirectTV except for via the phone line. My service is with Time Warner, and as far as i can tell, it's somewhat 'interactive'; when I choose an On Demand title, it takes a few seconds to a minute to 'access' it before playing.
Maybe I'll purge all my recordings and see how much of the drive is taken up; although when we got a new box, when I checked the space used, only a very small percentage of the space was in use, I thought it was for 'operating system' and the EPG, etc.
Still, if you buy a 160 GB DVR, while a small portion of that is the overhead, to be told you are not in control of over a third of it, is not something i'd want to hear as the consumer dropping a couple hundred bucks.
tonyc3742 is offline  
Old 11-08-05, 12:00 PM
  #5  
DVD Talk Special Edition
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,610
This does not bode well for DirecTV's DVR. Once again showing that they have no understanding of their DVR market. On demand is for people without DVR's, there is no need to take up my hard drive space for programs I can record myself - and charge me if I want to watch them.

Plus what if both my tuners are busy when their on-demand program is scheduled to record itself? Is it going to bump a something I'm recording for free? And unless they've changed technology, the DVR has to be on the channel when it's recording. What's to stop me from just watching it while it's recording?
Eddie W is offline  
Old 11-08-05, 12:58 PM
  #6  
DVD Talk Special Edition
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Posts: 1,152
I understand how cable's On-Demand works, and can see how this would be great for those who subscribe to cable. However, with DirecTV, I would assume that most people who want to watch these shows would just record them anyway to avoid the fee. Does this mean that DirecTV is slowly transitioning to a pay-per-view basis to get around this? In other words, couldn't they just say, "You can't record this show on your DVR, but you can watch it live for free (with commercials, of course) or pay to watch it commercial-free later."
Spanky BananaPants is offline  
Old 11-08-05, 01:07 PM
  #7  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Chew's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: South of Titletown
Posts: 18,628
About the only use I (as a DirecTV DVR user) would have for it would be to get a show that's on at a time where 2 other things are on as well. Like Tuesdays at 8:00CST when I have 4 shows on at once I watch.
Chew is offline  
Old 11-08-05, 01:09 PM
  #8  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Aostin, TX, USA
Posts: 19,876
Originally Posted by Chew
About the only use I (as a DirecTV DVR user) would have for it would be to get a show that's on at a time where 2 other things are on as well. Like Tuesdays at 8:00CST when I have 4 shows on at once I watch.
There are people with only one DTV DVR?
Y2K Falcon is offline  
Old 11-08-05, 01:18 PM
  #9  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Chew's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: South of Titletown
Posts: 18,628
Originally Posted by Y2K Falcon
There are people with only one DTV DVR?
Well, my dog certainly doesn't need one and there's nobody else in the house.

I have a TiVo DVD Recordable hooked up to the antenna for a third tuner. That 4 shows on Tuesday is the only time I have a problem.
Chew is offline  
Old 11-08-05, 01:33 PM
  #10  
DVD Talk God
 
Deftones's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Arizona
Posts: 74,848
Originally Posted by Eddie W
This does not bode well for DirecTV's DVR. Once again showing that they have no understanding of their DVR market. On demand is for people without DVR's, there is no need to take up my hard drive space for programs I can record myself - and charge me if I want to watch them.

Plus what if both my tuners are busy when their on-demand program is scheduled to record itself? Is it going to bump a something I'm recording for free? And unless they've changed technology, the DVR has to be on the channel when it's recording. What's to stop me from just watching it while it's recording?
Usually the on demand stuff records at odd times as to not conflict with Season Pass shows or other recordings.
Deftones is offline  
Old 11-08-05, 02:21 PM
  #11  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Triangle, NC, USA
Posts: 8,784
So it's not actually 'recording' [live content], it's 'downloading', and as such, can do it at 0330 in the morning?

Spanky: that's exactly my concern. A lot of people/industries don't like dvr's, and this could be step one to their recouping their money and controlling how the DVR is being used.

Chew: I don't know, there are a lot of good shows on Animal Planet your dog might like : )
tonyc3742 is offline  
Old 11-08-05, 03:06 PM
  #12  
DVD Talk Special Edition
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Posts: 1,152
Originally Posted by dtcarson
Spanky: that's exactly my concern. A lot of people/industries don't like dvr's, and this could be step one to their recouping their money and controlling how the DVR is being used.
I can tell you that if this is how it ends up, I'll stop watching TV entirely. I have enough books/DVD's/xbox games to keep me busy for quite some time. And for any shows that I really want to see, I'll netflix'em when they hit DVD.

I think they're starting to head down a slippery slope, and I don't like it.
Spanky BananaPants is offline  
Old 11-08-05, 03:54 PM
  #13  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Mpls, MN
Posts: 6,831
This is actually old news, rehashed from the sources since the DVR is finally coming out this month.

For comparison, the current DVR has some advertising/ondemand space always saved, about 5-10GB out of 40 or 80GB total. The new one with 60 of 160GB set aside for ondemand is just stupid. If it can't be hacked to give back the space, I won't be changing to it. I can currently put up to 260GB or so of usable space in my Tivos if I choose. Far more in the HD version.
Spiky is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.