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Thread: Shaw Direct's Next Technological Leap? Reply to Thread
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  Topic Review (Newest First)
2015-03-07 01:58 PM
classicsat Star Choice is not a standalone provider, for at least half the channels they carry, but a bastard child of a system whose primary system is to provide specialty channel feeds to cable headends.
2015-03-05 07:19 PM
rpokane What I meant is that DTV could strike a deal with SD to carry the necessary CanCon channels, and then we could order other packs from DTV as long as we purchased the "CanCon minimum pack".
A guy can dream
2015-03-05 05:06 PM
ExDilbert Satellite radio is no better. Sirius and XM used incompatible, proprietary formats. That left the combined company with a lot of wasted bandwidth and difficult to support system. The only difference is that Canada could not support a satellite radio system of its own so the CRTC made an agreement with Sirius and XM to allow Canadian companiesto use their satellite systems in Canada.

It's debatable if Canada can support two satellite DTH systems. Several US companies went out of business, leaving only two for a population 10 times that of Canada. ExpressVu (now Bell TV) lost money for many years and only survived by being subsidized by BCE. (Bell's long term plan is to use FTTN, aka Fibe, for home TV services.) Similarly, Start Choice survived due to it's commercial operations, being sold to Shaw and becoming a second rate DTH provider.
2015-03-05 08:54 AM
rpokane Ah ok. I was hoping it would be a software change, not a hardware change.

It would be nice if SAT TV could go the way of SAT Radio. Share the same platform, but work within it to comply with Cdn Regs.

We all know what a better solution would be, but it is what it is.

Thanks all for the info.
2015-03-05 01:14 AM
ExDilbert Shaw Direct would need to replace all the receivers being used by customers. That's a an expense that would be in the hundreds of millions of dollars. Even if Shaw could afford it, Shaw's owners is just too cheap to do such a thing. It would also require a doubling of satellite capacity to handle the transition, capacity which is just not available.

Star Choice (the company that was purchased by Shaw and renamed) did use the same technology as a US satellite provider and the same basic receivers. Unfortunately, that (long forgotten) US company was purchased by another (Dish or DirecTV) and the customers transitioned to new receivers. That left Star Choice as the only customer of that particular satellite receiver technology in NA. (A few cable companies use similar technology but different receivers.) To add to the equipment woes, the receiver manufacturer was sold to Motorola, which has experienced a significant decline in recent years. Unfortunately, Motorola owns exclusive rights to the encryption technology Shaw Direct uses. This has left Shaw Direct stuck with Motorola as the sole supplier for its receivers. Add the high cost of developing new receivers and related technology combined with the low volume of receivers Shaw Direct sells and Shaw is left in a difficult position when it comes to making "technological leaps." Shaw Direct might not exist if it weren't for its commercial operations that deliver signals to cable companies and other business customers over satellite. I doubt the consumer TV service would survive on its own.
2015-03-04 12:20 PM
rpokane OK
Again (out of curiosity), how hard would it be for SD to change to Dss videoguard?
Wouldn't access to more relevant/tested hw be worth it?
2015-03-04 12:05 PM
frenchhomer rpokane, different encryption methods, Shaw uses Digicypher, Direct uses Dss videoguard, where as Dish and Bell both use Nagravision.
2015-03-04 11:15 AM
rpokane What I've never understood is that if Bell can use Dish hardware, why can't SD use DirecTV hardware?
2015-03-03 01:23 PM
"Well it's a lot more difficult to do that with satellite. Much easier with cable."
Which is total hogwash. It can be done just as easily. The 630 is basically 10 year old technology. Whole home PVR is the new standard and Canada's satellite providers are, as usual, 5 years behind the times.
2015-03-03 02:30 AM
Originally Posted by Leafs13 View Post
I spoke to a tech support guy last week and asked about whole-home-PVR. He was quick to jump in with, "Well it's a lot more difficult to do that with satellite. Much easier with cable."

Hopefully that doesn't mean we won't get one.
Yeah, it's so difficult that no satellite provider anywhere is able to do it. [/sarcasm]

Typical CSR response from a person who knows nothing. Dish's Hopper is now officially 3 years old, and DirecTV's Genie will be 3 years old later this year. So Whole-Home DVR can be done, it's just whether or not the provider wants to spend the money to get the technology, which Shaw Direct (not Shaw Cable, who already has it) clearly doesn't want to do (though mind you they should be upgrading soon, since August 2015 marks the 5-year anniversary since they launched the 630).
2015-02-25 06:47 AM
bigoranget One thing a lot of people forget is that Shaw Broadcast calls all the shots when it comes to SD/HD MPEG2/MPEG4 signals. Unless Shaw Broadcasts starts migrating all cable head ends to MPEG-4 equipment, the HD signals on F1R and F2 will likely stay MPEG-2 for the foreseeable future.
2015-02-24 08:39 PM
CrispyPotato No idea if this will ever amount to anything, but I got a pop-up on the SD site today for a survey. Some of the questions were hardware related, including how interested I would be in whole-home PVR, live TV apps, the ability to record more than 2 channels at once, would I like more storage space etc. If you get the pop-up, I encourage you to complete it
2015-02-16 05:40 PM
Obed The definitions were also in quotation marks at source. The way to have meaningful terms is to explain your own meaning and usage and apply understanding and nuance when reading and hearing others.

Issuing blunt corrections that are neither generically true, nor even reflective of the technical definitions with quotation marks do nothing to promote cordial discussion on this board. With regard to the Q.E.D. you will interpret that as you will, for my part my attitude when posting was more of "sigh... I wish it was not necessary" in the original context of "which had to be proven".

Thank you for taking the time to explain your perspective also.
2015-02-16 05:04 PM
57 My word "broadcast" was in quotation marks for a reason - so that it was possible to distinguish between a "channel" that "broadcasts" and a BDU (that rebroadcasts?).

There are some "broadcasters", like specialty channels (non-OTA) that don't actually broadcast because they don't "transmit" in the traditional sense, rather they can send their signals via fibre for example directly to the BDU .

So, my differentiation was a means to distinguish the "broadcasters" from the BDUs, although I'm sure you knew that.

The water is even muddier than that though since some BDUs, like Rogers, Bell, Shaw own "broadcasters" like Global, CTV, etc.

Your use of the term Q.E.D. indicates that you wish to be known for having superior logic. You may feel that way if you wish.
2015-02-16 04:41 PM
Originally Posted by 57 View Post
Shaw Direct does not "broadcast" - they are a service provider.
Some actual Canadian specific definitions:

2. (1) In this Act,
« radiodiffusion »
“broadcasting” means any transmission of programs, whether or not encrypted, by radio waves or other means of telecommunication for reception by the public by means of broadcasting receiving apparatus, but does not include any such transmission of programs that is made solely for performance or display in a public place;

“broadcasting receiving apparatus”
« récepteur »
“broadcasting receiving apparatus” means a device, or combination of devices, intended for or capable of being used for the reception of broadcasting;

“broadcasting undertaking”
« entreprise de radiodiffusion »
“broadcasting undertaking” includes a distribution undertaking, a programming undertaking and a network;

“distribution undertaking”
« entreprise de distribution »
“distribution undertaking” means an undertaking for the reception of broadcasting and the retransmission thereof by radio waves or other means of telecommunication to more than one permanent or temporary residence or dwelling unit or to another such undertaking;

« réseau »
“network” includes any operation where control over all or any part of the programs or program schedules of one or more broadcasting undertakings is delegated to another undertaking or person;

“programming undertaking”
« entreprise de programmation »
“programming undertaking” means an undertaking for the transmission of programs, either directly by radio waves or other means of telecommunication or indirectly through a distribution undertaking, for reception by the public by means of broadcasting receiving apparatus;

ShawDirect is:
- a distribution undertaking, and,
- a broadcasting undertaking, and,
ShawDirect does:
- broadcast by radio waves for reception by the public.

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