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Shaw Cable analogue to digital migration

195868 Views 490 Replies 123 Participants Last post by  Dr.Dave
I received a notice from my apartment building, who bundles basic cable into my rent, and was told that Shaw needs to install digital boxes to remain receiving basic cable. Makes no difference to me since I already have a HD PVR, an HD box (awaiting a new TV to hook it up to as it is a rental) and a SD box. But here in Lloydminster are they phasing out analog cable altogether or did my apartment building make this decision?

If so, does this mean that Lloydminster will finally receive all the channels Shaw offers elsewhere such as Canadian Timeshifting and Superchannel? I would assume this would be a solution to the finite capacity issue as I understand that digital has a higher capacity (possibly infinite like IPTV) and could carry all of these channels without a capacity issue.
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For each Analogue channel space consumed is roughly 10-12 SD and just over 3 HD digital stations. There are plans for some reclamation of the "Tiers" first not including the basic cable channels (pretty much the first 20 or so in most communities) in order to create more space for further channel additions as well as the freed bandwidth in other uses within our network.

Shaw guys here will be happy to share more when we can. For now please understand there are some plans for partial conversion but not full.
Hey, yes I did change it I was slightly off. One channel is equal to about 38megs. So for HD we would compress no further than 12 and SD no lower than 3 typically speaking.
@Mike10 this is for the Analogue "Tiers" only for now. There is a Calgary Herald news article on the subject here (partial quote below)

The basic cable channels will remain analogue. He added that 80 per cent of Shaw’s customers are already digital.
I can hopefully clarify a little here. So two figures were talked about "triple and "sixfold" in each article. The TV tiers have roughly the same amount of analogue stations as the basic starter analogue package.

Putting the Tiers digital only (called Tier Reclamation) increases bandwidth capacity x3

Putting "basic" and "tiers" digital only gets to the x 6 capacity.

Is basic going to remain analogue? Absolutlety Yes - for now but in the future this could change.
Most of Saskatchewan's also not listed in that document (including Saskatoon). I understand that Saskatoon has already converted their tiers to digital. However, Saskatoon only offers internet up to 100 Mbps, and is not yet offering Phase 2 speeds of 250 Mbps. Is there any information on when Phase 2 internet will launch?
250mbps internet as part of Phase 2 launch date in Saskatoon is TBD still.
Some rough time frames to help out (for the actual reclamation and not the 250mbps) - Saskatoon (downtown) probably won't complete their Digital Network Upgrade (DNU) until mid November, Saskatoon (East January 2012), Saskatoon (Henselman) slated DNU February 2012. Once those happen then the 250mbps should come.
^ There are some Special Equipment Mail Out offers are available to customers only during the Digital Network Upgrade in their area. Affected customers when the time comes, will have the option of these as noted in communication personalized to them.
I thank you for your simplified explanation and analogies they are appreciated. I may have to give in to the technology that makes a simpler life a thing of the past. I don't really care that I might have to give in but I don't have to give in to Shaw! They have handled this badly by telling me that "Yes, sure everything will work just fine." Having a Shaw technician over to set it all up and then say Oh no, you can't really record anything but you can watch a video or DVD and by the way we don't support Blueray so here are the connectors go to it.

So, do I have to submit.....probably. Do I have to give Shaw the satisfaction....I don't think so. At least with Optik TV I get a free PVR.....something Shaw never offered and a free laptop (even if it is Windoz). I guess my rant is over and I'll leave the simpler life behind so that all of you can enjoy faster internet speeds (like saving a minute or 2 on a download would ruin your day) As for security....I wish them well. It won't take long for someone to figure out a workaround for thieving signal.

Hi Glenbucket,

As Jetranger has previously said I would think that with anyone else you are going to need some kind of box to get those channels. Shaw is not completely cutting off analogue totally; basic analoguechannels are still available, something that you don't get with another provider in your service area. With digital there are lots of different technologies that you can use to be able to record shows on those channels. There have also been plenty of networks that have gone digital recently such as Golf Channel, PBS Detroit and the Shopping Network that were all analogue channels that went digital and you then had to have a box to get them with Shaw. Personally I would expect more of the same in the future.

To help briefly answer some of your points, Telus will not give you an outright free PVR. It could be Free "Rental on a 3 yr contract" with a technology that is 100% digital, the key word being "rental". On the other hand we do not give out "Laptops on 2/3 year contracts" either. There are also other cost differences between the companies, however, that is another topic. At hand though, for affected customers Shaw will provide 1 lifetime free rental digital box with additional ones coming in at a rental fee of $2.95/month for affected customers. These entry level boxes are also priced extremely well.

With regards to the digital migration we do have other packages see this thread examples in short, provide either 1 free rental HD box or 2 free rental digital boxes under no contract. There are what we think are generous alternatives based on different dispositions and needs in the home. With regards to BluRay we do not set up your equipment as it is not ours - it's outside out support scope.

I would be more than happy to help you out further and have sent you a message on the subject. We want you to be happy not just with the price you pay but for the level of service you receive as well. I can understand the frustration and want to reach out to help. Let me know :)

The Digital Network Upgrade is a decision/ path that Shaw chose to take. From doing it we aim to be able to offer numerous benefits such as more channels, more HD channels, BluRay VOD, Faster Internet speeds and improvements to many services and products that our customers have been asking for for the longest of times. We've been in the business over 40 years and have had to adapt plenty of times along the way. We really think the outcome of this is best for the people we serve.
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^ doesn't work like that. Customers are typically notified by mail 30 days prior to change over and we also make courtesy calls. There is plenty of notice given.

Additionally we will have a channel crawl. The crawl details the fixed date where customers will lose their tiered video services and is customized to each region. This goes out ahead of time. The message will be limited to analog tiered customers only; those with a set top box will not see the crawl.

In the last financial call it was stated roughly 50% of our service area has been through the DNU which puts us ahead of our projected timetable.
The network upgrade is a pretty big task in so much it will take over a year to complete. In some area's we have been focusing more on node splits outside of DNU due to increase of demand of our services. Sometimes this can take precedence over a pre-planned DNU schedule upgrade. The schedule is quite tangible.

The number one goal for us is customer satisfaction and sometimes in some area's a push back of DNU is required to deliver on that satisfaction.
We won't advertise an area is DNU complete until the whole of that area is done even if a few neighbourhoods or sub communities have been done.

There is no future forward list that we can give out or that agents have access to. That information (such as timetable, letters etc) could be quite valuable to our competitors for many reasons hence the controlled process that DNU is. When an area is done and the Shaw guys get the ok to say so we will publicly post here for the community.

Customers will be notified in advance. That is the sign when you get that notice it will happen and work will start soon. It will happen for everyone and the outcome benefits will be massive. I can understand the benefits are compelling for a lot of you (myself included) and thus the frustration comes from not knowing where and when. Rogers for example in their service area are reclaiming Tier 3 only where we are going for all 3 Tiers which is a significant, but logical undertaking for us in being future prepared. We are making this investment to provide better service and features on products. Honestly, patience is best at the moment.

If anyone has questions when they get notice or what happens when they do just let us know here and we will be happy to help out :)
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Yep lots of DNU activities happening :)
Just an update for anyone in Airdrie, Alberta, it's going 100% digital (Phase 2) towards end of February. Customers will be receiving a letter/notice from us if not already.
@MacOSX - I don't sorry. Airdrie was one of our first areas that went through DNU. (region, infrastructure, geography - are some of the considerations)
^ This is correct, also Rogers is a little bit different in that they are using DTA50 adapters for a cheaper alternative. The logistics behind converting a city overnight would be overwhelming. The amount of channel conversions is also significantly less (just one tier to start) Also a few other at a time
^ You are right Basic listing are no longer advertised but the line up still exists : under the drop down.

There is also a price difference between the two packages.
Personal TV is $39.90 & Basic Digital is $43.00 which explains the difference in what you get.

Assuming (as an example and pretty much accurate nationally) a customer living in Central BC switching from Shaw Basic Digital to Shaw Personal TV the differences would be:

Standard Definition:
FOX-KCPQ Seattle
Food Network
History Television
High Definition:
CTV - CFTO Toronto HD
History HD
Food Network HD

Standard Defintion:
Treehouse TV
Sportsnet 360
E! Entertainment Television
TV38 - WSBK Boston
PBS - WTVS Detroit
Cosmopolitan TV (West)
National Geographic
MTV Canada
Big Ten Sports
High Defintion:
ABC - Detroit HD
CBS Detroit HD
NBC Detroit HD
FOX - Rochester HD
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Hi Bubba, the DCT 700 is a $3.95 rental, whilst it is true that for areas going through DNU there is a current cable box offer this might not of been the case 3 years back for the area you are in. If you want I'd be more than happy to take a look and help out. Just send me a PM if you want. Thanks :)
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