Netflix asks FCC to crack down on data caps, CBS All Access adds a commercial free tier, and do you still care about a new TiVo model? With special guest Dan Benjamin.

CordKillers: Ep. 136 - Netflerks
Recorded: September 12 2016
Guest: Dan Benjamin

Intro Video


Primary Target

  • Netflix asks FCC to review data caps
    -  Netflix has filed a request with the FCC to add data caps to its annual review of telecommunications deployment (usually focuses on availability and speed)
    - Netflix: "the Commission should hold that data caps on fixed-­line networks ­­and low data caps on mobile networks­­ may unreasonably limit Internet television viewing and are inconsistent with Section 706."
  • FCC changes cable box rules to please industry, gets blowback anyway
  • Comcast to FCC: Your set-top box plan is illegal
    - FCC modified cable set-top box rules adopting most of the suggestions from Cable industry
    - original plan allowed third-party software
    - Industry proposed provider-made software for linear and on-demand content only in HTML5
    - FCC changed to provider software but requires recording functionality and support of non-HTML5 if used by a "widely deployed platforms, such as Roku, Apple iOS, Windows and Android."
    - operators with more than 1 million subs must comply within two years. 400K- 1 million 4 years. below 400K exempt.
    - Standard license for software to be used by all operators
    - Comcast to Ars: "empowers the Commission to hand over to a third party [pay-TV companies'] rights to the proprietary technologies and service that make up their apps,"
    - Wheeler also wrote that all copyright and licensing agreements will remain intact, since “the delivery of pay-TV programming will continue to be overseen by pay-TV providers from end-to-end.”
    - NCTA: " “Programmers today do not pool and offer uniform rights across all platforms and uses."
    - Final vote scheduled for September 29
    - SUMMARY UPSHOT: FCC will let cable companies write the software apps but require DVR functions and a single license for the software. Cablecos. are upset most about the license because they think it will threaten licensing deals for shows."


Signal Intelligence

  • CBS All Access commercial-free option costs $4 more a month
    - CBS All Access - exclusive future home of Star Trek: Discovery in the US — will offer a commercial free version of the service for $10 a month
    - Current offer is $6 a month
    - Also coming to Xbox One
    - SUMMARY UPSHOT: CBS first big service after Hulu to offer a commercial-free tier.


Gear Up

  • New TiVo Bolt+
  • TiVo's new interface will cut down on channel surfing
  • TiVo is working on a network DVR that'll broadcast to your non-TVs
    - Rovi completed takeover of TiVo
    - New TiVo interface
    - Centered around surfacing what you want to watch rather than just showing everything that's on.
    - FCC filing from TiVo describes a networked OTA DVR similar to Tablo or simple.tv (codenamed Mantis)
    - HOWEVER - Today TiVo announced an update to the Bolt, called the Bolt+ for $499 (+$200 over orig)
    - Can record up to 6 channels at once (2 more than orig)
    - 3TB hard drive (vs. 1 TB orig)
    - Glossy black
    - No HDR yet could come in update. (does do 4K just like original Bolt)
    - On sale Thursday Sept. 15

Under Surveillance


Front Lines


Dispatches from the Front
Hey guys,

Just listened to this past week's show and wanted to add some points about your experiences with NBCs coverage of the Olympics.

Admittingly, I tend to live in the NBCSN app for most of the year because they have exclusive rights to English Premier League soccer, but I found that the NBCSN app did most of the things you were saying they should for the Olympics.

The app on my phone updated and added the Olympic rings in the icon. When I opened it, it gave me the chance to select Olympic events, athletes and/or countries I wanted to track.

Then I would receive live notifications each day telling me when an important event was about to start and give me the option to just click on it to go to the live stream and watch.

I would get what seemed like at least a dozen notifications a day that included my preferences and other random events it considered note worthy (so for example "Watch the world's fastest man Usain Bolt run in the 200m semi." And so on)

One complaint though is that most events tended to be a raw feed. If it made the primetime broadcast, that would be when you would get the actual commentary or special athlete profile segments. During the day, if it was not something broadcast on live TV it was just the event with sounds from the venue.

Aside from the Olympic stuff...wanted to offer a tip for Premier League fans. All games are broadcast on TV, but depending on the cable company some games are in SD. However in the app, all games are HD. There is also a RedZone like, app only channel called Goal Rush. This shows the game of the day live and cuts to big plays and goals in all of the games. Definitely great if you have a fantasy team.

Cheers!
- Byron NYC

 

 

Hey Tom and Brian,

Wanted to throw a quick comment (non-advertising related) regarding your discussion on The Departed. The movie, despite being often as "original" or a "masterpiece", is not original. The movie itself is a remake of the 2002 award-winning film "Infernal Affairs" from Hong Kong (the true "original" has a prequel and sequel as well, of which portions were incorporated in the American remake). I don't believe it's on Netflix though it's available for rent and purchase on Amazon.

Best,
- Derrick

 

 

Hey Cord Killers,

What would be the best way to watch The CW without cable? I've used the Xbox app but it's not that great, & the app has adds. Would you recommend buying an HD antenna, or buying season passes for the DC TV shows on Amazon?

If antenna is the better route, what brand would you recommend?

Thanks,
- Zach

 

 

 

Hey guys,
You keep saying that Netflix has the new star trek discovery show for everywhere but the US...well you forgot about Canada. Bell Media outbid Netflix, will air the premiere on CTV and then the rest on the SPACE channel. Which you need cable for!!
They say it may be available "later" for streaming. Space also got the entire star trek back catalogue that will just air...on cable...not streaming

Man...Bell sucks.

- Joel

 

 

 

Hey Brian and Tom,

On your recent discussion of how to retain your in country Netflix experience while traveling, my solution has been to use a VPN tied to my home router. I run Tomato on my Asus router (because I'm a geek) but I'm wondering if the router vendors are starting to include VPN software as well. I had no issues traveling to Europe or South America and keeping my home version of Netflix.

Granted, roll your own VPN is probably more complicated than most are interested messing with, but the router vendors might have an opportunity to differentiate their product for the globetrotting public.

- Bryan


Links

www.patreon.com/cordkillers

Posted
AuthorTom Merritt