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X1 IPTV service

536
I Plan to Stick Around

Last year Rogers announced that it will be using the American IPTV platform X1.  Does this affect any of the current cable television customers?  Will current customers automatically be updated to this new platform or will this be in addition to the current cable service?

 

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292 REPLIES 292

Re: X1 IPTV service

DeanLubaki
I Plan to Stick Around

I already knew that. In both scenarios (even in Quebec in 2012), it was true fiber to the home i.e., we had fiber outlets at home instead of the good old Jack or cable outlets.

Look at all the construction in Toronto. A lot of other buildings have FTTH yet Rogers converts it to cable.
I'm nowhere talking about retrofitting, but having all IP equipment for those who have FTTH.

And to be clear, the fibre does go up to my living room: I have a little box converting that to cable.

Re: X1 IPTV service


@DeanLubaki wrote:

I already knew that. In both scenarios (even in Quebec in 2012), it was true fiber to the home i.e., we had fiber outlets at home instead of the good old Jack or cable outlets.

Look at all the construction in Toronto. A lot of other buildings have FTTH yet Rogers converts it to cable.
I'm nowhere talking about retrofitting, but having all IP equipment for those who have FTTH.

And to be clear, the fibre does go up to my living room: I have a little box converting that to cable.


@DeanLubaki

as @57 mentioned although the service converts from fibre to coax, the coax isn't the limiting factor. DOCSIS is the limiting factor. 

Re: X1 IPTV service

57
Resident Expert
Resident Expert

@DeanLubaki wrote:

 

And to be clear, the fibre does go up to my living room: I have a little box converting that to cable.


It may be that when IPTV launches, you will no longer need the "little box".  It's all pure conjecture at this point.  I believe we're both on the same wavelength.



Re: X1 IPTV service

Sundog1966
I Plan to Stick Around

I think your analogy to an apple box is not quite correct because Rogers has other activities that need to be performed above and beyond connecting to a server. The apple box still connects to the network using TCP/IP but your router still needs to have logged in and established a session. In the case of TV not only do you need a session but you also need to have have a license to  access the content of the channel that you want to watch. In this case a package consists f a set of access keys that allow you to   view the channel associated with that key. Your account would have a set of keys associated with your package as well as promotional keys for  free previews and so on.  Logging into your session then is a database lookup using  the X1 serial number as a key or its MAC address to allow the device onto Rogers network along with regional restrictions such as the city or a zone within a city. This is why we have the OSI 7 layer model so that access at each layer is clearly established and the data packet can have appropriate headers and trailers attached to the packet to identify and route the packets. There is also  quality monitoring and performance data  to be collected and test packets to verify the status of the network etc. Most of what Rogers would be customizing would be at the application, presentation  and session layers with some routing and  other routing and addressing stuff at the network and  data link layers. The  Physical layers should be pretty standard. I suspect that  the presentation layer would also contain  triggers for commercial insertions and proof of  distribution so the advertisers  can validate and be billed,  content management. customer support, line testing,  such as noting  metrics of who is watching what and when and where and for how long.

 

Also, Adult content, pay per view and DVR  functions may require additional  authorization and account  and capacity for recording verification etc. There is also  routing to proxy servers and cache servers and PPV movie servers etc to be accounted for as well as  content licensing verification  with  media providers such as Sony music, CBS, NBC, ABC for live action events such as the Superbowl or restrictions such as regional blackouts  etc and CRTC content regulations as well. I am only speculating but  my work experience with  providing educational video content to businesses suggests that much of this is correct.

 

So in short the answer is  the backend of Rogers network a bit more complicated then  making a physical connection.

 

Re: X1 IPTV service

Sundog1966
I Plan to Stick Around

With a 25Mb service fr connected for success, if X1 need 25Mb  then  total capacity  would be  35 to 40Mb as a  ballpark since the X1 channel service is always on and using full capacity unless I turn off the TV and my  internet access through my PC for web browsing  is very bursty unless I am watching Netflix while the TV is on  Then I would need the full  50Mb/s second.  That is why I was asking about  channel utilization and capacity for people who have an existing internet and   cable TV service.

Re: X1 IPTV service

Sundog1966
I Plan to Stick Around

I wasn't confusing OTT with   devices like chrome cast. One of the posts indicated  the box might be wireless  which implies that there must be someway for the box to connect to the tv. I  speculated that a dongle attached to the tv set would be a way of  connecting a wireless device to a TV  without relying on the tv having  intelligent connectivity with the X1 box.

Re: X1 IPTV service

DeanLubaki
I Plan to Stick Around

Well that could be an opportunity for Rogers to make everything much simpler.

Remember that Bell TV has an Apple TV app that you can use to watch all channels like on Bell's PVR box.

Re: X1 IPTV service

wayner92
I'm a Reliable Contributor

@Sundog1966 wrote:

I think your analogy to an apple box is not quite correct because Rogers has other activities that need to be performed above and beyond connecting to a server. The apple box still connects to the network using TCP/IP but your router still needs to have logged in and established a session. In the case of TV not only do you need a session but you also need to have have a license to  access the content of the channel that you want to watch. In this case a package consists f a set of access keys that allow you to   view the channel associated with that key. Your account would have a set of keys associated with your package as well as promotional keys for  free previews and so on.  Logging into your session then is a database lookup using  the X1 serial number as a key or its MAC address to allow the device onto Rogers network along with regional restrictions such as the city or a zone within a city.

 


But how is that any different from web sites that have various levels of authentication?  Or the Rogers Anyplace TV app on my iPhone?  They can tell the IP address that you are coming from to know if you are on a Rogers network and know the MAC ID of your cable modem.  

Re: X1 IPTV service

57
Resident Expert
Resident Expert

@Sundog1966 wrote:

With a 25Mb service fr connected for success, if X1 need 25Mb  then  total capacity  would be  35 to 40Mb as a  ballpark since the X1 channel service is always on and using full capacity unless I turn off the TV and my  internet access through my PC for web browsing  is very bursty unless I am watching Netflix while the TV is on  Then I would need the full  50Mb/s second.  That is why I was asking about  channel utilization and capacity for people who have an existing internet and   cable TV service.


I'm not quite sure why you're concerned. Most areas served by Rogers have Gigabit capability for Internet, plus many simultaneous channels for Cable TV.  RF-Coax has far more bandwidth than Bell's twisted pair (which is perhaps where you're getting the 25/50 Mbps numbers?)



Re: X1 IPTV service

BS
I'm a Senior Advisor

@DeanLubaki

 

Comcast in the US is running a beta app for use on Roku.  I have not seen any discussion of Apple TV at this time.  So yes, this is a feature that I would expect to see to - one of the things that I see though is this model is capable of so many different things - Whole Home - view on any device in the home, remote viewing, managing your PVR remotely (once that gets settle), voice control from the remote (Google home and similiar may not very far away - Channel Master just released their streaming for over the Air antennas, Android streaming with interface to Google Home and the Google Tv Guide (seems everyone is in this game right now).

 

But back to my concern, is how much of this stuff can companies keep adding before the costs become beyond many - even current cable is beyond some of us already - but one thing occurring with many Xfinity providers and Comcast is add on costs for various features, not standard feature sets of the whole product.  Getting it to work, and then the pricing and marketing structure will tell all, but at a minimum, they have to compete with Bell, the Satellite market (yes it is still out there) who are all doing the same, and a lot of the hope is they are trying hard to draw back the cord cutters by giving them access to OTT in an integrated TV model.

 

Tons of options of what direction this can go, just largely the cost of technology and how well it integrates with existing models if they keep them in place, and the ongoing broadcast, licensing, and copyright negotiations, that all impact ability to use a feature, to provide a desired media to users and the cost and demand for all of it.

 

Bruce

Re: X1 IPTV service

wayner92
I'm a Reliable Contributor

I have read somewhere that with Comcast's IPTV service that you can't mix and match legacy boxes with IPTV boxes - your house has to be all one or the other.  Anyone care to speculate on whether there are technical reasons for this and if this will be the case with Rogers as well?  I wouldn't mind trying the service when it comes out but I don't want to get rid of all of my existing boxes that were paid for years ago.

Re: X1 IPTV service

wayner92
I'm a Reliable Contributor

But back to my concern, is how much of this stuff can companies keep adding before the costs become beyond many - even current cable is beyond some of us already - but one thing occurring with many Xfinity providers and Comcast is add on costs for various features, not standard feature sets of the whole product.  Getting it to work, and then the pricing and marketing structure will tell all, but at a minimum, they have to compete with Bell, the Satellite market (yes it is still out there) who are all doing the same, and a lot of the hope is they are trying hard to draw back the cord cutters by giving them access to OTT in an integrated TV model. 


Some of these ideas could actually save the user money.  If you could watch TV through an app in Roku or AndroidTV then you wouldn't have to buy or rent a box from Rogers.  You would just have to buy a Roku or AndroidTV device but they are fairly cheap and some TVs have this functionality built in.  I would rather buy one of these devices for ~$100 and have the ability to watch TV plus any streaming services that I wanted compared to paying Rogers $9.99/month to rent a box that only does TV (and maybe Netflix if we are lucky).

Re: X1 IPTV service

DeanLubaki
I Plan to Stick Around

That already exists: Bell Fiber Alt TV lets you subscribe to cable only using an Apple TV or even a Mac, or iPhone.

Re: X1 IPTV service

Sundog1966
I Plan to Stick Around

@wayner92 wrote:

@Sundog1966 wrote:

I think your analogy to an apple box is not quite correct because Rogers has other activities that need to be performed above and beyond connecting to a server. The apple box still connects to the network using TCP/IP but your router still needs to have logged in and established a session. In the case of TV not only do you need a session but you also need to have have a license to  access the content of the channel that you want to watch. In this case a package consists f a set of access keys that allow you to   view the channel associated with that key. Your account would have a set of keys associated with your package as well as promotional keys for  free previews and so on.  Logging into your session then is a database lookup using  the X1 serial number as a key or its MAC address to allow the device onto Rogers network along with regional restrictions such as the city or a zone within a city.

 


But how is that any different from web sites that have various levels of authentication?  Or the Rogers Anyplace TV app on my iPhone?  They can tell the IP address that you are coming from to know if you are on a Rogers network and know the MAC ID of your cable modem.  


Its different because most web server are just files on a hard drive available. The initial authentication is similar. In rogers case their monitoring and compliance activities are not typical for a  company that is making access to files available through an android box. And most OTT websites are not streaming PPV or Realtime sports and well as respecting blackout restrictions. These kinds of activities make it more then just plugging in a media player, logging in  and loading  a bunch of apps to get access to different providers. In this case Rogers is the only provider and  they  offer channels streaming in real time from international providers not just selecting files on a sever that it then plays. Most  people providing  content on media players don't charge for advertising and then verify that the selected Canadian ads were played  while content from US based CBS is being streamed and providing  this data  to  companies that have purchased  this data or rogers may use this to negotiate  licensing fees based on viewership. This is far more then  some guy throwing a bunch of pirates mpegs onto a directory and handing out an app to access it does. Size, scale and regulatory issues factor in significantly om terms of how Rogers must  set-up and structure the operation of the X1 IPTV.

Re: X1 IPTV service

Sundog1966
I Plan to Stick Around

@57 wrote:

@Sundog1966 wrote:

With a 25Mb service fr connected for success, if X1 need 25Mb  then  total capacity  would be  35 to 40Mb as a  ballpark since the X1 channel service is always on and using full capacity unless I turn off the TV and my  internet access through my PC for web browsing  is very bursty unless I am watching Netflix while the TV is on  Then I would need the full  50Mb/s second.  That is why I was asking about  channel utilization and capacity for people who have an existing internet and   cable TV service.


I'm not quite sure why you're concerned. Most areas served by Rogers have Gigabit capability for Internet, plus many simultaneous channels for Cable TV.  RF-Coax has far more bandwidth than Bell's twisted pair (which is perhaps where you're getting the 25/50 Mbps numbers?)


My concern is that if I don't have enough capacity on my 25Mb service  they may require me to move to a more expensive internet package in order to receive both internet and IPTV.

Re: X1 IPTV service

OLDYELLR
I'm a Senior Advisor

@Sundog1966 wrote:



My concern is that if I don't have enough capacity on my 25Mb service  they may require me to move to a more expensive internet package in order to receive both internet and IPTV.


What about Rogers TV Cable customers who have a different ISP?  I have 15Mbps DSL that tops out at 13Mbps. Good enough for Netflix, but not sure about watching and recording streaming TV.


Rogers PayGo. Location: S-W Ontario

Re: X1 IPTV service

57
Resident Expert
Resident Expert

My guess (and it's only a guess) is that Rogers IPTV would be separate from your Internet package, in the same way that Rogers Home Phone uses the same cable, but is separate from Cable TV and/or Internet.  Also the same way that Rogers Cable TV is currently "separate".

 

I'm also guessing that Rogers IPTV would require a Rogers cable coming into your home and not just Internet from another provider via twisted pair, for example.

 

We shall see - it's pure speculation at this point.  I never thought of Rogers IPTV being anything other than a "replacement" for Rogers Cable TV, at least in the early stages.  Once it's more developed, who knows what you'll be able to do.



Re: X1 IPTV service

DeanLubaki
I Plan to Stick Around

Well... With Bell's model, they set up their own internet service for the IPTV, but obviously the user cannot use the internet connection for other purposes than the TV (no different than the good old dry DSL line).
We can assume that Rogers would do the same to remain relevant

 

Re: X1 IPTV service

OLDYELLR
I'm a Senior Advisor

@DeanLubaki So I'm guessing IPTV will cost more money. Cord cutting will just be more attractive.


Rogers PayGo. Location: S-W Ontario

Re: X1 IPTV service

BS
I'm a Senior Advisor

I am going to make a guess given the competition model from Bell IPTV that they you will be able to use your preferred Internet service - Bell used to force you to have their IPTV on their Internet, but that is not a requirement anymore.  You just won't receive the cost savings of bundling, but if you are only using low speed Internet, you don't have any need for higher speeds, and they generally only bundle at the higher ends.

 

There is one new thing that Rogers is already doing - for viewing online RAPTV in the home, you have to be attached to Rogers Internet to get the full range of available channels.  If you don't have their Internet, you will get the reduced number of channels available to remote access away from home.  This is actually a broadcasting rights issue, similiar to why some stations we don't get at all, or some stations are in SD only.

 

Bruce

Re: X1 IPTV service

BS
I'm a Senior Advisor

@OLDYELLR wrote:

@DeanLubaki So I'm guessing IPTV will cost more money. Cord cutting will just be more attractive.


Due to the level of competition where alternatives are available, I suspect it will be similiar to what we currently pay, but we all know that over the years we have been paying more for less with each year that has gone by, so only time will tell what the competitive forces will bring the pricing to.  And as we know there is not a lot of competition in the market for bringing TV into the home.  The cheaper alternatives remain cord cutting, and then you are making the choice of what you want to give up and pay.

 

Lots of speculation as to what we will get, but at this point, I agree with @57 that it will probably start as basically the same as we get now, and as much as possible with something that the competition doesn't offer, but mostly the same features so they can get into the old game of why their service and box is better than the other guys, why their bundles are better, they have more channels, all those comparisons of the tiny differences.

 

My guess - we will see wireless boxes come for whole home - comcast set top boxes can do that, something like Roku once it goes out of Beta in the U.S., ability to have the ability to view a group of over the top services, like Netflix, the voice control remote, things like manage PVR will come once licensing gets cleared up, that is if there is enough demand to make it worth paying the licensing, it will all be 4K capable, the group of apps we currently see with full browser functioning at a minimum.  Channel mixes will be the same as we have now just moving the broadcast mix.  Pricing between the major companies are pretty close to each other at this time, channel mixes are pretty comparable, so there will be little on a basic level to differentiate the company, so I suspect features will get added over time for competitive advantage (we are different), and pricing will be somewhat different, with somewhat different mixes of broadcasting licensing, and as we see now, different models of the basic TV and pick and pay models.

The reality is that QAM or IPTV, they are both capable of doing the same things on a box and Internet access to services away from the box.  TIVO has been delivering Over the Top and Cable for quite a few years now.

 

So in  a lot of ways, I don't see that it will be a greatly different world from now, same thing at the end of the day - just TV coming to us over a different medium.

 

The only advantage market wise at this moment is that it is much easier for the telephone companies to get IPTV into rural areas and towns once they lay in the Fibre backbone, the copper is already there - IPTV and slow Intenet.

Rogers has to lay in either Fibre to the home, or a coax framework in order get to the rural areas.

 

But now the discussion moves way into the future (well not that far, next decade).

 

But in summary, on a basic level, I think the service that Rogers puts out there will be very similiar to the traditional IPTV offerings with similiar feature sets, costs, packages, and channel mixes.  Where things will differ is where you live - If Rogers is already in your neighbourhood, but Fibe to the Neighbourhood is not in the there yet, you will have choice of Rogers or Sattelite, cord cutting, or over the air antenna.

 

Interesting discussion this is proving to be.  Certainly helps for pre release hype.

 

Bruce