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BDFL
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Topic # 119600 7-Jun-2013 09:53 Send private message

Hello folks.

We have had a good run in the first round and voting is going well for the top 15 ideas in the second round.

The Telecom project team asked us to seek comments on a few ideas they have bounced around before. A couple of those actually made to the first round but didn't get enough votes to make the top 15.

Seeing the concept is to create a modem/gateway device, what are your views on these?
  • Integrated Hard Drive (example – removable single drive – possibly hot swappable, 3.5” SATA 2TB) with DLNA integration.
  • Integrated TV Tuner for terrestrial & satellite with HDMI output, DVB-S, DVB-T etc (would require FreeView compliance).
  • External Antenna Port/Jack (example CRC9 connector)




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  Reply # 832075 7-Jun-2013 10:07 3 people support this post Send private message

Hi,
I'm not so worried about the freeview / satalite decoder capability, and not sure of the value of the DLNA server / hardisk combination. Shared storage is a good idea, but my experience with streaming from these devices is mixed at best and with content only destined to get bigger and need more bandwidth I'm not sure these relatively low spec devices would be able to keep up with content delivery and the other stuff they have to do. But anything which allows you to mount the antennas away from the unit is a good thing. Often jackpoints and power points are not in the best locations for good wifi coverage.




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  Reply # 832078 7-Jun-2013 10:10 One person supports this post Send private message

Now we're talking :)

HDD with DLNA Yes please

TV tuner - Interesting direction! Turning more into a HTPC/media centre. Are they looking to compete with Sky/Freeview/Vodafone in the set top box market or is it a replacement to the Tivo?

External Antenna - good idea




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  Reply # 832086 7-Jun-2013 10:16 One person supports this post Send private message

Not too interested. Most TV's have a built in tuner, and anybody who *wants* that kind of thing most probably already HAS a TiVo or MySky.

The cost of adding that in for people who *won't* use it vs the cost of having it as an independent devices for people who *do* use it... It's going to fast become a prohibiting factor for buying it.

Hell you recall what the TiVo was when it came out. I got mine "On Sale" with the Holiday pack for $1,000.
Now add a WiFi / ADSL / VDSL router in to that as well along with gigabit network and PoE ports, and it'll fast price itself out of the market.

Nice idea (In theory), but I personally have zero enthusiasm for seeing that in a router like this.

Customers have a hard enough time as it is trying to use their current routers feature sets let alone throwing *more* in to the mix that'll increase the cost of the device.

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  Reply # 832090 7-Jun-2013 10:17 2 people support this post Send private message

The only feature of the three that would appeal to my use case would be the External Antenna, very useful feature.

The HDD would be difficult to attract me as I already have a solution in place for this. Prefer to let more capable devices focus on this.

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  Reply # 832092 7-Jun-2013 10:20 One person supports this post Send private message

I like the sound of a hot swappable HDD, would be a handy feature for myself.

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  Reply # 832101 7-Jun-2013 10:27 One person supports this post Send private message

I'm gonna be honest - DLNA, what's the point. I've got a ton of devices already that do this, and most people are like me in that they probably do as well (and don't even realise it, there's that many!) I don't think there are really any people left that still need a DLNA device (and even then, anyone that does still need it quite probably also needs a device with enough spare grunt to transcode it too, since most receiver devices have limited format support). So, yeah nah.

TV tuner? Interesting idea, but with TVs these days having build in Freeview, and Freeview supporting DVRs being so cheap, no real point in it.

External antenna, uh YES! Absolutely do this.

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  Reply # 832105 7-Jun-2013 10:28 Send private message

I like the HDD/DNLA idea, especially if it is easy to use, and has good compatibility with many devices. I'm currently in the process of digitizing my DVD collection, and it was a real mission finding the secret sauce recipe to get it all working. And in fact, I suspect there's still some tweaking required.

This is something that many people could benefit from, but as it stands its far too complex and fiddly for the less tech savvy user to even contemplate tackling.

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  Reply # 832107 7-Jun-2013 10:29 Send private message

TV tuner would be a wasted effort i suspect as most would have sky or TV's with freeview built in, better would be to integrate something like Android TV or some other type of Smart TV interface. I have two relatively modern full HD TV's at home which are not ready to be upgraded but lack all the latest smart TV features. If said modem outputted smart TV/DLNA/media server features via HDMI then my TV iss given a new lease of life

built in HDD vs portable HDD I think i would prefer portable as then you have choice of SSD/HDD, capacity, hot swap etc, not as cosmetic but far more versatile in the long run

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  Reply # 832108 7-Jun-2013 10:29 One person supports this post Send private message

It is difficult to get excited about server capabilities on a "modem/gateway". The price for convenient server features is always too high for benefits that most people won't use.

External antenna connection will be much more useful because it enhances a core function of the "gateway" by helping users with connection issues.




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  Reply # 832112 7-Jun-2013 10:32 Send private message

Integrated hard drive would be much better idea than an external hdd that keeps on falling off the shelf that the modem is on. I would value that as a budget home media library solution.

I don't know much about DLNA, I tried Windows Media Player once but didn't bother spending the time to accurately name and catagorise video files so still use the file system to find things.

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  Reply # 832118 7-Jun-2013 10:43 One person supports this post Send private message

1) Not necessary. The majority of customers aren't going to use a hot swap bay let alone know how to, unless you ship it with a hard disk inside it. And if you do that then it'll either be expensive for a large one or you'll get complaints it's too small. 3.5" drives would also make the device quite big and bulky, you'd have to use 2.5". If you are going to supply the drive then you have to support customers who get hard disk failure. If you think this can be managed at a reasonable cost, keeping in mind all the factors then it would be nice to have. You need to ensure that the device doesn't suffer the same fate as other consumer products with hard disks built in, they get out of date very fast. If you want a good example, see the WD Live with built in HDD. Last I checked you could buy a 2tb external and a normal WD Live for cheaper and still have change. It simply can't keep pace with storage advancements.
I think USB3 is a better solution than this, however USB2 with greater than 20MB/s speed would be sufficient and better than most of what's on the market now, and should be possible with a SoC keeping costs down.
I do however think DLNA is an important feature which will drive sales and be relevant to those with a smart tv etc. I see this as the sort of customer who would buy it.

2) Not necessary and out of scope. This is a modem, not a set top box. This brings more complication and things to go wrong. Modems often overheat and fail. Freeview boxes do this too. I don't think we need to combine the two, a suggestion with several votes was to have it reliable and not hot. Plus this is a wasted feature unless you put it by the TV, or use network streaming. Of which it would be better to just start reselling HD Homerun if you want it done properly.

3) Yes please. Two or three external antennas, though please use SMA rather than something like CRC9.



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  Reply # 832119 7-Jun-2013 10:44 Send private message

Kyanar: I'm gonna be honest - DLNA, what's the point. I've got a ton of devices already that do this, and most people are like me in that they probably do as well (and don't even realise it, there's that many!)


Except that not everyone is like you or me. And seriously, the number of people who doesn't have these is probably a lot more than people who do have.






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  Reply # 832130 7-Jun-2013 10:56 Send private message

Rather than external antenna which is not going to have much WAF, why not have 1 or 2 pre or easily configured repeaters that can be placed conveniently around the house?

Even better would be for the modem and each of these repeaters to include a dect handset

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  Reply # 832132 7-Jun-2013 10:57 2 people support this post Send private message

freitasm:
Kyanar: I'm gonna be honest - DLNA, what's the point. I've got a ton of devices already that do this, and most people are like me in that they probably do as well (and don't even realise it, there's that many!)


Except that not everyone is like you or me. And seriously, the number of people who doesn't have these is probably a lot more than people who do have.




Which begs the question: Why do they not have them?

This leads on to the second question: Why would they *buy* this router (You've mentioned it's not going to be a freebie giveaway) over something else that does it which is likely going to be cheaper (And just keep their existing router)?



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  Reply # 832138 7-Jun-2013 11:03 Send private message

Because they don't even know it's possible. I know people who go all "Wow!" when I tell we have our music in a NAS and play in the lounge as background for a slideshow with all our photos stored in the network.

Seriously, not one or two but a lot of people...





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