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  #1  
Old 2011-03-02 , 09:37
stevenv stevenv is offline
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Default PVR access fee

Can someone from Multichoice tell me what the monthly PVR access fee is actually used for (i.e. what do I get for my R65.00, "PVR access" is not an answer) and why I have to pay to use the hardware that I own?
  #2  
Old 2011-03-02 , 09:41
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sualk sualk is offline
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It's just another way for DSTV to get easy money

It already costs R2000 to buy the damn thing, now we still have to pay extra to use it.

I would drop this fee completely.

I have never seen anything like it.

Milk the customers dry.
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  #3  
Old 2011-03-02 , 09:45
stevenv stevenv is offline
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I found this in the FAQs: "The R65 access fee is charged to access multiple channels simultaneously (be this for viewing or recording)." http://forum.dstv.com/showthread.php?t=6985

Still want to know something however: technically the only difference between a PVR customer and a non-PVR customer both with premium subscriptions (IMO) is that I paid more for my decoder, LNB and cabling. Other than that there is no difference. So why, just because I paid more for my hardware (to be able to record), should I be paying more for the same subscription?
  #4  
Old 2011-03-02 , 09:47
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MC Marietjie MC Marietjie is offline
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We had a discussion a while ago on Wendy Knowler's show on PVR access fees. Here is the summary, which explains why the fee is needed.

In the past, DStv subscribers who wanted to be able to watch more than one channel at the same time, or to watch one channel whilst recording another, would have had to buy two decoders, and pay subscription fees twice.
However, in recent years MultiChoice has introduced what we call a "multiple environment" so as to avoid subscribers incurring this duplication of expenses. Our Dual View and PVR decoders afford subscribers significant savings, and enable them to watch more than one programme at the same time, or to watch a programme whilst recording another.
However, this multiple environment is far more complex to operate. We have had to develop and maintain far more sophisticated business systems. We have also had to develop, maintain and constantly upgrade through software downloads via satellite the software embedded in the relevant decoders. (In this regard we wish to point out that full PVR functionality flows from the combination and interaction of the software embedded in the decoder with the software based at MultiChoice.) In addition, the more advanced offering to subscribers has increased the number and complexity of call centre queries. As a consequence, we have had to increase and maintain our investment in technology, business and administrative systems, and staff. We have accordingly charged an access fee to cover some of these costs.
Our subscribers thus enjoy added value in two senses: their viewing environment is enriched, and at the same time they benefit from significant savings.
  #5  
Old 2011-03-02 , 10:57
stevenv stevenv is offline
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Thanks for the reply. So in summary its to pay for a better billing system, software bug fixes and more call centre operators.

In terms of the technology required to provide the PVR functionality, I understand it as follows (based on experience working in the IT sector): when I pause or rewind live TV it makes use of the built-in buffer, when I schedule a recording it makes use of a built-in scheduler that starts recording the second feed at the correct time and all my recordings are stored on the decoder. Essentially all of this functionality is provided by the local hardware and/or software.

Quote:
In this regard we wish to point out that full PVR functionality flows from the combination and interaction of the software embedded in the decoder with the software based at MultiChoice.
The only feature that I can see would require interaction between my local hardware/software and that based at Multichoice is "DSTV on demand". Would it be wrong then to suggest that an additional fee might be warranted for this functionality but none of what I've mentioned above?
  #6  
Old 2011-03-02 , 11:10
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MC Marietjie MC Marietjie is offline
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@stevenv - This works like any computer - you buy the hardware but without the software it is basically useless. Without the software from MultiChoice, you wouldn't be able to view or record anything on your PVR.
  #7  
Old 2011-03-02 , 11:17
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Krugie Krugie is offline
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It's just like I have to pay for Windows bug fixes and Windows updates...

Oh no sorry, my bad, those are free...
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  #8  
Old 2011-03-02 , 11:20
stevenv stevenv is offline
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So the R2,000 I paid already was only for the hardware and the additional monthly fee is for the software to be able to use that hardware? To your analogy: when I buy a computer with a copy of Windows included in the total price, I don't need to pay Microsoft every month to use it and software bug fixes are included in the purchase price.
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Old 2011-03-02 , 11:27
Brian G Brian G is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Krugie View Post
It's just like I have to pay for Windows bug fixes and Windows updates...

Oh no sorry, my bad, those are free...
Is anything really for 'free'? I see that as part of the original purchase agreement.

IMO the R65 access fee is basically for the additional channel(s), viewed or recorded. How MC justifies that doesn't change what it's for practically.
  #10  
Old 2011-03-02 , 12:53
gwalker gwalker is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevenv View Post
Thanks for the reply. So in summary its to pay for a better billing system, software bug fixes and more call centre operators.

In terms of the technology required to provide the PVR functionality, I understand it as follows (based on experience working in the IT sector): when I pause or rewind live TV it makes use of the built-in buffer, when I schedule a recording it makes use of a built-in scheduler that starts recording the second feed at the correct time and all my recordings are stored on the decoder. Essentially all of this functionality is provided by the local hardware and/or software.



The only feature that I can see would require interaction between my local hardware/software and that based at Multichoice is "DSTV on demand". Would it be wrong then to suggest that an additional fee might be warranted for this functionality but none of what I've mentioned above?
The fee also includes Xtraview of linking 2 decoders.
The reason of the access fee is for the ability to view 2 channels, a recording of another channel is also considered viewing a 2nd channel, or the potential thereof.

G
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