Categorized | Uh-Oh Bad PVR News

OpEd: Why Unicorns are more Real than CableCARDs

Posted on 15 April 2005 by

Smokyalien read this very interesting Engadget column CableCARD and OpenCable and has come to the conclusion “Unicorns are More Real Than CableCARDs” (will be)

But first an exerpt from the engadget article:

In theory, it sounds like a good idea: “The networks will be open. OpenCable will free people from the repressive shackles of their cable boxes. We will all live in a cable-box-less utopia.” In reality, OpenCable is closer to the bastard child of greed and fear.

Now read SmokeyAlien’s take

So you thought one day soon there would be this big bright shining halo that would float down upon your PVR, give you digital cable straight into the box, and then ask you who it’s daddy is. Fear no more from this great light or freedom as it seems it may very well never happen. Sure, you want to record digital cable without the need for those pesky extra tuner boxes, and IR blasters, and small furry gnomes. Too bad it ain’t happening for almost another 2 years. For those of you watching at home please follow after the jump.

So you want to record 3 different StarZ channels, an HBO Latin movie, a little Spice Network loving, and still see what there is to see on Discovery Channel HiDef, all from the comfort of your own couch. Well it seems that between the restrictions being milked for all they are worth and your ever helpful FCC we will never have this opportunity. It’s going to be alright though. What a lot of people aren’t paying attention to is something near and dear to my heart, thats right…IPTV. That’s Internet Protocol Television for those of you playing the board game.

IPTV will spring to the forefront offering HD content as well as millions of other channels straight to your computer/tuner. This isn’t the exciting part though. Cable providers are about to find whole new meanings to “downward shifting planes in economics” since Verizon has been kind enough to sign agreements with most of the major Telcos like Bellsouth, SBC, and Sprint so that they can run FIBER directly into your house for the low monthly fee of around $50. This means a) no more cable outages lasting 2 indefinite weeks, b) no more Comcast “we’ll be there in three rotations of a big bang phenomenon” just to have th installer screw 2 wires together, and c) all that juicy content steaming straight down into every computer in the house (and right back out again to the P2P networks thanks to your 1337 14 year old) is going to mean you’ll need a bigger monitor (or everyone gets a laptop).

So I ask you compatriots, denizens of the hallowed halls of Primetime Shows at 4am. If given the chance to drop cable, satellite and your home phone service completely for the same or less than you pay now would you take it? Would it sound even better if you can now host your own webserver, fileserver, and remote controllable can opener without the fear of having your service cut for breaking bogus agreements? If you are scratching your head wondering if it might really be possible to finally get all of the charges on one single bill, save money, and still find a Unicorn for your kids then the answer is YES. It’s time we move forward, CableCards are dead. Long live surly gnomes.

And if you are curious then ask Maiku in the forums how he likes his shiny new fiber line.