Monday, December 17, 2007

Comcast DVR with TiVo is now available

Just got an email from Comcast telling me that my wait is over.
"Comcast DVR with TiVo is now available"

Comcast now has TiVo service!
I clicked to learn more, but once you log in, the online system has no way to order it.

I had to call on the phone....

I keyed in all my info.

Talked to a rep.

He put me on hold.

Then I ended up talking to someone else.

She asked again for my address and said:
I didn't know it was coming out so soon. Let me check if it's available.
After waiting on hold for at least 5 minutes the rep comes back on the phone and says:
"TiVo is available in your area but I have no pricing or codes to order it. Can I call you back within 15 minutes after I talk to a supervisor?"


My suggestions for Comcast:
1. Click on links in emails prior to sending them out to make sure they lead to the correct information.

2. Make sure that customers can order new products online.

3. Make sure internal systems have the pricing and codes available for customer service reps to be able to process orders.

4. Make sure that people answering the phone and representing the company knew about new products being rolled out.
Seems logical to me.

Hopefully this won't become too long of a post.

Stay tuned.

Please comment on your experiences.

Update ( the next day ):

I'm now on an online chat with Comcast customer service...

This is what is happening:

Stay tuned.

The phone rings...

Deborah just called from Comcast:
- She does not see 'the codes' in my account.

- Needs to look into the status

- Coding needs to be put into my account to allow downloading to DVR
The way I left it with her is that I authorized Comcast to add the TiVo software to my DVR. Comcast will also drop off my new remote.

She agreed to email me when it's set up, and she gave me her direct phone #.

Stay tuned...

Time passes... The phone rings...

Deborah called to get my preferred email address.

Update 12/19/07:

The phone rings...

Bill from Comcast's Executive Office in Massachusetts just called to confirm my appointment for tomorrow.

I told him I wasn't sure what he was talking about, since this was the first I'd heard of an appointment.

Bill went on to explain that Comcast rolling out a truck to my house to replace my Comcast DVR with a new Comcast TiVo DVR.

That's great I said, but what about all the shows I currently have sitting on the Comcast DVR?

Bill says that I can keep the old one for a while until I watch all the shows. I hope he realizes that sometimes it takes a year for me to watch recorded shows. :-)

I asked Bill why I was getting a call from the executive office and he replied that they heard I was having trouble ordering TiVo.

I explained how you couldn't order it online and the phone reps didn't have the codes to activate it.

Bill told me that because of my call, the codes are now available and for neighborhoods where TiVo is rolling out, you can order it.

Stay tuned...

Update 12/20/07:

Two installers and a supervisor came over this afternoon to install the Comcast TiVo software on my existing Comcast DVR.

I was the first Comcast DVR installation in Boston.

They came by to make sure the signal was strong enough to download the TiVo software.

Comcast is here installing TiVo

There WAS an issue with the signal strength, so they climbed up on the pole outside to look for a filter. They used to use filters to filter out over the air signals from the cable. Now that it's digital, the filter is not needed.

Cable Filter - Remove for Comcast TiVo Dwonload

It ended up that the filter was attached to a splitter inside the house. Once removed, the installer called in to Comcast and the download started.

Comcast TiVo Software being downloaded
After about 30 minutes the download was complete and the TiVo interface was successfully installed on my Comcast DVR. Yay!

TiVo Screen Display
The TiVo screen display was too big for the screen, so I went into the TiVo menu and reset the interface so that the TiVo menu fit on the screen.

It's not an HD TiVo display, so the TiVo interface does not fit the wide HD screen, but sits in the middle like regular TV broadcasts.

All my previously recorded shows are still on the box.

The only thing that doesn't seem to work is 'groups.' I'm expecting a call to address that.

TiVo Central on Comcast DVR

I'm looking forward to using the TiVo software and will post more about it as I start using it.

I got a call from a technician about groups not working. I am thinking that it might work on new shows that I record, but just not on shows I recorded with the old software. We'll see.


  1. Same thing here. First time through the customer service person called me back and told me it wasn't really available. The second said that mine must be the first zip code activated, but that she had no way of entering the order and transfered me to sales.

  2. No joy. Sales said that there must have been some human error. Or someone spoofed the email. Or the
    disclaimer did something to make the email ineffective.

    My email to customer support was met with: "Our engineers have temporarily delayed the launch to make sure all the bugs are worked out..."

    Let's see what response my email to the Senior VP for Customer Operations gets.

    Boy, I wish RCN covered my neighborhood.

  3. Steve, I got a good laugh at all of the Comcast ads that Google is placing around this post.

    I have a different Comcast customer story.

    Three weeks ago I decided to finally get a cable box - to see digital picture, on Demand, ppv etc.

    My experience deteriorated immediately. I did not expect the delay of processing a digital signal on my analog TV when changing channels. Changing channels is no longer instantaneous.

    The massive info box at the bottom of the screen is pretty intrusive.

    I need to restrict a lot of new channels, for the kids.

    For the last two plus weeks, the television, on every channel, has displayed "One Moment Please. your channel should be available shortly" or similar.

    We disconnected the box over the weekend.

    Not thrilled with the upgrade at all. Technician scheduled for tomorrow.

    Thinking an A/B switch might be in order.

  4. Anonymous10:47 AM

    Steve, I'm following your progress closely, and when you've got it. then I'll call! Of course what's available in JP may not be to Medford yet!

  5. And why....I have stuck with analog cable and plain old S2 TIVO boxes.


  6. Steve,

    I've added your story to Digg!

  7. Anonymous8:04 PM

    Coming over from AVS forums, I have to correct you. I live in Derry, NH and I've already been switched over to Comcast Tivo. My groups works fine.

    I'm posting anonymous but I'm sure you can find out who I am on the forums. Good luck with the service though, sounds like you are actually off to a great start.

  8. Great post! How do you like your "new" DVR thus far? I wish TWC would offer a TiVo DVR in my area.


  9. Anonymous5:19 PM

    Welcome to the TiVo club they are better then any other DVR by far. I love my stand alone that does so much. Quick question for ya? does this box have the same features as a stand alone such as amazon unbox, rhapsody, etc...

  10. I've had a standalone TiVo for a long time. Love it.

    As far as I can tell, the Comcast TiVo does not have Amazon Unbox or any online features.

  11. Anonymous7:26 PM

    Hi Steve,

    The Tivo interface for Comcast is a strip down version of the regular tivo. So no Amazon unbox or Rhapsody. Latter being a bit surprising given that Rhapsody is available through

  12. Anonymous11:27 AM

    Why wouldn't you just go get a HD Tivo? That would have been a lot easier. Buy the box on Amazon for $250. Pay for 3 years upfront (about $7 a month) and call Comcast and get TWO cable cards from them (about $2/month per card). That way you'd get real TIVO. And you wouldn't have to deal with the crappy Hard Drives and crappy service from Comcast.

  13. "Why wouldn't you just go get a HD Tivo? That would have been a lot easier."

    Hmm. I hadn't even thought about that.

    Let's see how this Comcast TiVo works out for me, and if it doesnt' I'll look into getting an HD TiVo...

  14. Anonymous3:43 PM

    It ends up being more expensive with an HD Tivo (once you add the cost of the box plus monthly subscription plus either 2 cable cards or if you're lucky, one multi-stream cable card), and that's even if you don't keep the comcast box in order to get On Demand and Pay-per-view. I might switch to a Tivo box once they have 2-way cablecards with the new Series 4 Tivo that's supposed to come out next year.

    However, I have had the same issues as you with getting the Comcast Tivo, no one online knows about it, I keep talking to supervisors who also don't know about it and I live in Kenmore Square and got the e-mail too. It's so frustrating. Is there a number for the executive customer care?

  15. Email me your info and I'll pass it along.

  16. Anonymous9:22 AM

    hey steve - i'm in JP too - Perkins. Are we neighbors? Anyway. Just ordered the service and they're sending out a technician next week. We'll see how it flies!

  17. Hi Mr/Ms Anonymous Perkins street resident,
    Email me.

  18. Anonymous3:48 PM

    Steve, what's the deal with the remote.

    Is it still the lovable "peanut", or the crappy old silver Comcast remote?

  19. Kevin:
    It's a peanut with an On Demand button.

  20. I just got Comcast TiVo installed today. I previously had a Comcast DVR. The installation went smoothly, but I've lost the 30-second skip feature that I was able to program into the remote with the old interface ( I tried this TiVo method: ( but that doesn't work either.

    I have the old Comcast remote still and the "A" button on that remove (that previously performed the 30-second skip) now skips to the end of the program (same as the Advance button does on the new TiVo remote).

    I was afraid this was going to happen. Any ideas on how to get this working with the new Comcast TiVo combination would be appreciated.


  21. Following up with a new method for a 30-second skip on Comcast TiVo: