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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 2007-05-17, 02:52 PM Thread Starter
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Cool Video On Demand on Shaw Direct

Does anybody know if we are getting video on demand when Interactive TV is available in the Fall. Or is it just going to be little games and the weather like Bell?
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 2007-05-17, 03:58 PM
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I doubt you will see VOD from sat any time soon. This is feature that will give cable an edge.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 2007-05-17, 04:07 PM
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VOD is essentially impossible with satellite unless they had thousands of birds in space.

As more and more folks go digital then VOD is, in my mind, a satellite killer.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 2007-05-17, 06:03 PM
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The initial ITV apps are expected to be similar to the current crop of offerings from Dish & Bell. Games, Public Service & Customer Service.

As for VOD, Hugh I disagree, at least partially.
VOD on sat is done in the background on selected transponders and downloads content to a reserved partition to a larger hard drive in PVR units.
You could conceivably d/l a 2 hour SD move in 1/2 hour if you used HDiDef data rates which are about 4 to 1.

Since content is subject to viewing windows, after you have about 4 weeks worth of content, then week 5 content pushes off week 1 content so you always a 4 week sliding window of programming that can be purchased from your local hard drive.
Essentially purchase on view.

Given the unique geography of Canada, I sincerly doubt that satellite will be killed by VOD and cables offering.
Each has it place and efficiencies since Canada is neither rural nor metro but a blend of each.
Technology has and will adapt to service the needs of all Canadians.

The same can be said for broadband internet as in Digital Television.
Where cables/dsl is not practical, wireless and satellite fill that void quite nicely.

It's a less efficient model than cablr, but seems to work for millions of U.S. viewers.
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 2007-05-18, 12:25 AM
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ARR, I agree with your scenario of VOD on satellite -- but not your conclusions.

On Demand is not about the number of movies you can squeeze onto an end-user's PVR in case they might buy something (and, hands up, everyone willing to give back 50% of their recording space so that Star Choice can borrow it to sell you 24 hr access to a movie stored there).

On Demand is about expanding the range of programming choices and offering increasingly large libraries of movies and shows for playback at whim.

Rogers is currently offering 16 or more distinct On Demand services; this cannot be duplicated via satellite and a PVR. Great example: TMN has five SD movie channels; a selection of the month's titles are available on TMN On Demand -- like a full season of The Sopranos, Rome, Entourage, etc. The Mpix channels add two more -- and MPix On Demand with a selection of those titles. There are also three HD channels from TMN/Mpix; sooner or later we can expect at least some TMN HD On Demand to arrive. Satellite can't do this today and can't in the future without resorting to some wireline/broadband hybrid. And if you have access to all that, why not just get cable?

I rarely watch Food Network or HGTV; but now that On Demand versions are included in my subscription, I am enjoying lots of programs from these channels because I can explore on my own time, on my own whim ... and, currently, WITHOUT commercials. Try that on satellite.

There are incarnations of Satellite On Demand in the US but they are extremely limited in content, as per your description. Where no cable/wireline solution exists, satellite may get by with such an alternative. But as cable On Demand becomes more well-known, I believe consumers will bleed away form satellite to get it.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 2007-05-18, 12:55 AM
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I notice that the dish network is offering on demand service. It looks like VOD is coming to satellite slowly. here is the link for on demand for the dish network in the US
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 2007-05-18, 02:00 AM
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Originally Posted by SensualPoet
Rogers is currently offering 16 or more distinct On Demand services; this cannot be duplicated via satellite and a PVR.
I'm very familiar with the technology.
I spent 8 years in Shaw Digital Cable Engineering and was a member of the original On Demand team.

I used to know some of the boys at Rogers as well.

I agree that cable VOD holds the most promise for the technology.
But so many were put off by cablecos that satellite looked pretty good.

I know some have switched back now.
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 2007-05-18, 04:19 PM
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... and I've also seen the Shaw version of On Demand on a recent trip west (and got a chance to play with Telus TV).

What Rogers is doing is radically different than where Shaw is today.

There are over 3000 assets on On Demand, many on Channel 100.

But there are 16 or so dedicated services, some free with VIP, some charged as a separate channel.

Paid SVOD Examples: Howard Stern, WWE/24, Anime Network, here! TV
"Free" SVOD tied to paid channels: TMN, MPix, HBO series, Playboy
"Free" SVOD tied to VOD: Food Network, HGTV, National Geographic
Free to all Digital customers: MTV, Treehouse, NFL Network, OMNI Plus

Plus 24-hr window access on a paid basis to individual titles: Movies and HD Movies, Bollywood Oye!, TVB Chinese Series On Demand

... and I've probably missed some along the line.

No other Canadian cableco has anything as broad as this; and only select sub-systems of US cablecos provide something similiar. Comcast is a great example of where we are headed with more content, more episodic TV and even more free content including a robust offering of movies.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 2007-05-28, 03:11 AM
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If I'm not mistaken, DirecTV is attempting to "try" VOD by using a DVR and an internet connection to download the movies then play it at your own time off the DVR.
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 2007-05-28, 03:30 AM
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Currently the "main" focus of star Choice is getting more HD content out there! (other then getting the 530 working)

There has been some talk about VOD, but they have not even started looking into it yet. Once the 530 is big free they will probably start looking into the option of adding VOD but that is about two or three years away.
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 2007-05-28, 10:57 AM
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DirecTV is supposely trickling content to the HDD when possible. When a program is available, they can buy it from the "My VOD" menu item. The purchase is registered alongside PPVs, at least that is my understanding. The receiver doesn't have an internet connection at all.

You may be thinking of Stanalone TiVos which do have some iVOD services available that come over internet.
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 2007-05-28, 01:04 PM
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Here is the article from MultiChannel News concerning DirecTV/VOD:
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 2008-01-14, 03:31 PM
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On Demand?

I've seen references to a major upgrade coming to PPV on *C to allow for on-demand functionality in some of the threads here.

Has anyone heard of whether this is still happening and the features that may be involved with this?
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 2008-01-14, 11:29 PM
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On Demand -- as it is implemented on cable -- is not possible with satellite. On Demand requires streaming live programming from a library of thousands of titles; you can't create individual channel streams from a satellite in this sense.

Some sort of hybrid On Demand model is possible -- storing a handful of titles by partitioning your PVR hard drive so you can buy things pre-stored, for example. But that just cuts your personal recording space in half -- not exactly an ideal trade-off for access to a half-dozen films you still have to pay extra for.

Other models include using a hi-speed Internet connection to deliver TV but controlled my your satellite set top box. But that means crunching a lot of bandwidth on your (third party) Internet connection; needing a reliable, very fast connection with guaranteed QOS; and in the end it's not exactly Satellite On Demand. Since one of satellite's biggest pluses is that it is NOT tied to landline services, this option also limits the users who could make use of it.
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 2008-01-15, 12:50 AM
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Now that the hard disk limitation seems to be blown wide open by crafty users, they may be thinking of a 'special OnDemand' version or an upgrade if you are interested in such a service.

Drop in a 750GB or 1 TB and slice off a third and you could store the entire month of VOD quite nicely on it.
Use a transponder sending MPEG4 at HD data rates and you could populate the in house library in no time at all during idle times.

I do know they have resurrected their user MPEG4 PCMCIA module investigations once again.
So it's nice to see them looking to a very bright future.

This initiative could be coming from the fact that it's SHAW and not Viewers Choice holding the VOD cards now.

As Hugh has noted, in a mature market, it's all about increased revenue penetration.

Knowing the Shaw guys that gave birth to the original OnDemand (SOD) concept (BTW, I did a lot of the concept and training documentation) and watching it mature to the level today, I see *C OnDemand as very viable.
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