Author Topic: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement  (Read 47818 times)

Offline Daniel Hall at IceTV

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Soon you will be able to enjoy the added programming that the 3 major Commercial TV Networks (7, 9 & 10) intend to provide on their new High Definition TV channels, which are due to be officially launched shortly.

Although this is of course great news for TV watchers as a whole... unfortunately IceTV still doesn’t receive any support from the major networks or from FreeTV Australia. As a result, there will be a short delay and we won’t be able to provide EPG data for these new channels until 2-3 weeks after the start of full strength programming.

This is mainly due to possible legal ramifications imposed by the networks and the method we use in order to provide the IceTV service. In most other countries around the world, TV networks openly support independent third party EPG providers like IceTV.

We apologise for any inconvenience this short delay in coverage may cause & thank you all in advance for your patience.

In other news, FreeTV Australia last week announced that the major commercial TV networks have agreed to start providing electronic program guide data via the broadcast signal. This is good news for those with an integrated TV or simple set-top-box...

However for most PVR users... this means nothing. Based on the information IceTV has been given by FreeTV Australia, it seems there are still no plans to provide the EPG data to any digital recording devices that have an in-built 30 second Skip Button or fast forward speeds of 60x or more. That accounts for about 99% of IceTV users.

We at IceTV believe that you should be able to enjoy & freely use all the intended features of the hardware device you yourself purchased and not be restricted in how and when you watch your favourite TV shows. One of the greatest benefits of being an IceTV subscriber is that you are in complete control. Watch, pause, rewind or skip through anything you've recorded. Snack on TV or sit down for a full feast.

Because we provide our service and our own independent 7-day EPG via broadband and not over the air, you are able to enjoy all the other value-added benefits that we provide. These features include IceTV Remote, the IceTV Widget, MyGuide and the soon to be released IceTV Video, none of which are available when using a basic EPG supplied via the broadcast signal. For more information on IceTV and the unique features & services we provide, click here.

We are in constant communication with representatives from the different manufacturers we are associated with and together we are carefully looking into the options available to us. As always, we will be putting our current IceTV subscriber's and the 'average consumer' first before making any decision.

If the cons outweigh the pros for the end user in terms of experience and functionality... then we will continue to offer the feature packed service that we offer today and remain the leading independent third party EPG provider in Australia.
Regards,

Daniel.
CTO.

goldcoastguy

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Re: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2007, 04:41:37 PM »

However for most PVR users... this means nothing. Based on the information IceTV has been given by FreeTV Australia, it seems there are still no plans to provide the EPG data to any digital recording devices that have an in-built 30 second Skip Button or fast forward speeds of 60x or more. That accounts for about 99% of IceTV users.


Hasn't this now been proven to be false?

Turning off ICE on my Toppy, I'm getting exactly what the Free TV Australia announced it said it would deliver.... totally unencrypted.

In fact I'm getting an 8 day guide on some channels.


Evan :->

Offline Daniel Hall at IceTV

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Re: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2007, 05:38:47 PM »
At this stage we are not sure exactly how things these will be restricted, except that FreeTV Australia have confirmed that the data is not authorized for use in PVR's that support 30 sec skip and other features. Whether they try legal tactics to stop certain PVR manufacturers we don't know.

More information is out there at http://www.theage.com.au/news/technology/networks-want-to-nobble-adskipping/2007/11/19/1195321672583.html and http://www.itwire.com/content/view/15400/1085/

Offline dgaust

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Re: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement
« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2007, 11:03:01 PM »
FreeTV refuse to say how it will be enforced, it appears that they are just as one person has put it 'sabre rattling'.

A reply to a request for further information was along the lines of 'It will be up to the end user to ensure they don't breach copyright, and the copyright owner to enforce their copyright'.

It seems like a crazy situation, but considering the current situation with Australian TV it's not surprising.

Thanks for the post Daniel, it needed to be done.

Offline Jason W

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Re: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2007, 11:14:54 PM »
In fact I'm getting an 8 day guide on some channels.

Okay, my curiosity got the better of me and I just had a look with dvbsnoop. I am seeing what looks like full 7 day guides with descriptions from Nine and Ten but as usual Seven is lagging behind with just now and next data (in which they are still shouting out their event names in glorious capital letters). I didn't check ABC or SBS. Things certainly have improved since IceTV started but are no where near complete enough to use yet.

Of course if the guide data is accurate and standards compliant they can't exactly stop any EIT supporting recorders from using the data for scheduling. Are they going to try and pull DMCA style legal tactics?

Offline chopper

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Re: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement
« Reply #5 on: December 05, 2007, 12:27:48 PM »
Any new news yet - Is the ICE epg now showing the new programming yet (Adelaide) or am I missing something ?  ???  :-*
Cheerio

Offline Daniel Hall at IceTV

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Re: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement
« Reply #6 on: December 05, 2007, 01:39:37 PM »
Any new news yet - Is the ICE epg now showing the new programming yet (Adelaide) or am I missing something ?  ???  :-*
Cheerio

We are monitoring the situation and at this stage 7 HD has not started full strength broadcasting as yet (I unfortunately found this out after watching through 80 hours or so of 7 HD). At this stage they have not announced when they will start broadcasting full strength either.

10 HD though have announced they will begin proper multi-channeling (full strength broadcasting) on Dec 16th, so all going well you should see the new guide data on there approximately 2-3 weeks after that.

Offline chopper

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Re: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement
« Reply #7 on: December 05, 2007, 03:18:33 PM »
OK ! A late xmas present  ;)
16th + 2-3 weeks = about 31st Dec 2007 or 6th Jan 2008 or so.

avagood1

Offline prl

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Re: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement
« Reply #8 on: December 05, 2007, 05:35:01 PM »
...
Of course if the guide data is accurate and standards compliant they can't exactly stop any EIT supporting recorders from using the data for scheduling. Are they going to try and pull DMCA style legal tactics?
From my reading of section 5.1.5 of Digital Video Broadcasting (DVB); Specification for Service Information (SI) in DVB systems (ETSI EN 300 468) "scrambling" of the EITs (Event Information Tables) that constitute the EPG is explicitly allowed for (how it's done isn't in that standards document). They're clearly not doing it now, but that appears to offer a mechanism that would let them restrict the EPG information.
Peter
Beyonwiz T4 in-use
Beyonwiz T2, T3 & T4 for testing

Offline Jason W

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Re: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement
« Reply #9 on: December 05, 2007, 06:31:02 PM »
From my reading of section 5.1.5 of Digital Video Broadcasting (DVB); Specification for Service Information (SI) in DVB systems (ETSI EN 300 468) "scrambling" of the EITs (Event Information Tables) that constitute the EPG is explicitly allowed for (how it's done isn't in that standards document). They're clearly not doing it now, but that appears to offer a mechanism that would let them restrict the EPG information.
Thanks for posting this reference. It seems you are correct, the EIT can be scrambled using CA. It appears like the intended usage is for event info on channels which themselves are subject to CA (premium channels, perhaps adult channels or similar (i.e. think of the children™)) but it certainly could be used for this purpose as well. With the correct decoding hardware support (CA card?), the EIT data could be compliant and scrambled.

In any case, my original thought was with regard to existing decoders out in the market. There's no technical way that I can think of to allow these to work while preventing uncrippled PVRs from accessing the same content.

Kirben

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Re: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement
« Reply #10 on: December 06, 2007, 02:57:49 PM »
Is there any way programming for Seven HD could be added sooner? than waiting for channel to go full strength. With different content been shown in afternoons and evenings next week, the current guide is getting useless.

I noticed the programming for Seven HD is listed in various online TV guides (eBroadcast, yourTV) now, and no longer limited to Seven's web site.

Offline Mitch IceGuide

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Re: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement
« Reply #11 on: December 06, 2007, 03:06:43 PM »
We do NOT get our information from other EPGs. No you won't get the information sooner as we take our legal obligations very seriously and are very aware of copyright responsibilities. I hardly think this renders the IceGuide 'useless'. I would imagine the 'odd' person out there is still watching SD Television.

Kirben

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Re: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement
« Reply #12 on: December 06, 2007, 03:10:20 PM »
We do NOT get our information from other EPGs. No you won't get the information sooner as we take our legal obligations very seriously and are very aware of copyright responsibilities. I hardly think this renders the IceGuide 'useless'. I would imagine the 'odd' person out there is still watching SD Television.

To clarify, I thought you might get your content from similar sources as online TV guides.

And I specifically meant the Seven HD channel only, when I said 'useless'.

Offline baturbo

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Re: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement
« Reply #13 on: December 11, 2007, 07:05:32 AM »
This is a joke >:( I did not pay $99 to see that just about every online guide has up to date information and yet the service that I pay for is has no 7HD content information. It's been more than two weeks!

Offline dylan

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Re: Information on new HD Channels & response to FreeTV's EPG Announcement
« Reply #14 on: December 11, 2007, 10:14:44 AM »
baturbo

I have read your message 4 times and I still can't understand what you are saying. Too many double negatives for my pre coffee brain.  ;)

Perhaps you are saying that you pay $99 just for 7HD data and only use the free on-line guides for all other channels?

Dylan



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