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Have Austar Changed Encryption On Their Cards?


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Select on the other hand purchase their content from the same people that foxtel do and as such they are required to use sufficient encryption. What they are using now is obviously sufficient, but in the future if their content providers tell them they must move to Irdeto 6 (or whatever is the latest and greatest at that point) they will have a real problem on their hands. This is the exact reason why all the big names in PayTV insist on you using their own equipment.

Hindsight is a marvelous thing. When Select and UBI (remember there are also UBI gammas out there) chose Mindport's Irdeto2 and their "secure smartcard technology" Irdeto2 had not been hacked or even slightly cracked anywhere in the world (disregarding the weakness of card sharing which Mindport made a lot harder with V5.1 and up cards) and the doomsayers were all saying Irdetos was mathmatically impossible to crack with current technology available to the average person. When Gammas first arrived on the scene so much was the belief in most sat enthusist forums that irdeto2 was uncrackable that the people saying gammas are out there and the gamma team can make cards for ANY Irdeto2 provider that it was shouted down for months, until the admin at a large aussie forum openly posted he had seen one, held one, and seen everything happen, PPV, Box Office, Auto updating, everything. poor old Select, they have the model that almost everybody wanted, ie a smartcard only sub if you want it, no contracts, pay per month, using your own equipment, only to be let down by 1. a pretty average channel line up, and 2. an uncrackable encryption that is now well and truely compromised. So where does Select go from here? perhaps their only option is to go the CI+ option and also their own boxes with closed softcams, they already offer their own boxes if you want, so if they are worried about piracy then a CI+ system maybe their only saviour. Ive been watching select for a week now on a mates borrowed card while is is on holiday, and lets say Im slightly disapointed with some of their channels, they could get a couple of better ones for not much more money. Is there anything else on that discovery real time but car shows? WineTV, does anyone actually watch that? What Select needs is History and UKTV and a womens channel for my Mrs and Id dump Austar for Select instantly if i could still use my Topfield, even if it meant forking out for a CI+ cam

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Select doesn't pay STB vendors to do firmware upgrades - they license the technology from Irdeto in the same way manufacturer's do. As soon as Irdeto upgrades their specifications they provide those details to all STB manufacturer's to use in developing new firmware. If there is a significant change then there is a migration period (in the same way that Aurora has allowed several years for users to move from Irdeto V1 to V2 before turning off the old V1 encryption and rendering the old cards useless). Every Aurora user has been given lengthy sufficient notice to upgrade the firmware in the STB's with inbuilt Irdeto CA systems or change over to a more recent Irdeto CAM.

Then it would take so long for anything to be upgraded and new features to be put in because ooh ahh, there might be one customer angry that their decoder doesn't work which will even make the development time and release of Mystar look good!

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Hey, Just wondering can anyone confirm yet if you can hook the mystar up to a DVD Recorder or VCR even through analog and playback your recordings so you can effectively back them up.. or does it have the macrovision or digital protection to not let you record any recorded stuff??

This is the only thing stopping me from getting one as I like to keep some stuff I record esp good docos

Thanks

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Hey, Just wondering can anyone confirm yet if you can hook the mystar up to a DVD Recorder or VCR even through analog and playback your recordings so you can effectively back them up.. or does it have the macrovision or digital protection to not let you record any recorded stuff??

This is the only thing stopping me from getting one as I like to keep some stuff I record esp good docos

Thanks

It can be done with a video stabiliser in line. This strips off the copy protection. http://www.digitalmegahouse.com.au/stabiliser.html

John

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Hey, Just wondering can anyone confirm yet if you can hook the mystar up to a DVD Recorder or VCR even through analog and playback your recordings so you can effectively back them up.. or does it have the macrovision or digital protection to not let you record any recorded stuff??

Yes, Macrovision on the My'ControlledByAu'Star is turned on as soon as you activate the time shift function (pause or rewind button etc) or play back any recording (that includes the FTA channels as well).

So factor in the cost of a video stabiliser product if you want to record anything other than live tv from their crippled product.

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Yes, Macrovision on the My'ControlledByAu'Star is turned on as soon as you activate the time shift function (pause or rewind button etc) or play back any recording (that includes the FTA channels as well).

So factor in the cost of a video stabiliser product if you want to record anything other than live tv from their crippled product.

Actually, if you are certain you will want to back up a program, you can use the unit the same as a STB - just set the timer on Mystar AND the timer on the DVD-R. I used to do this when using the satellite Toppy -> a copy on the Toppy HDD & another on the DVDR HDD - sort of backup in case of bungles - yes they happen to us all. :rolleyes:

Going back to the STB/DVDR combo is a PIA and I've messed up a couple of recordings already. :ninja: But I'll persist as these days there is not a hell of a lot left of interest as most has been seen, meaning the settings and channel changes are minimal. But I must admit that I would be very tempted with Mystar if Austar was a new toy.

John

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As expect the ACCC's reply has been 'go away and stop annoying us'

Enquiries also failed to identify any inconsistency with previous representations. It is a condition of service of AUSTAR subscription contracts that customers only use the set top box (STB) provided by AUSTAR to receive AUSTAR’s pay TV service. In the absence of any representations by AUSTAR to the contrary (that is, that third party STB’s may be used to receive AUSTAR services) it is unlikely that AUSTAR’s conduct would breach the consumer provisions of the TPA.
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  • 4 weeks later...
As expect the ACCC's reply has been 'go away and stop annoying us'

No, not quite, each ACCC reply letter posted here appears quite from different from each other, as was mine, which indicated they were monitoring Austar to ensure it did comply with it's legislitive requirements, and would continue to do so, and they suggested that the matter could also be referred to the NSW Minister for Fair Trading as the 3rd party decoder box issue may also be an issue for them. Others in NSW may wish to raise it via that avenue, I chose to spend hundreds of dollars getting somewhere by upgrading my s-video and component cables (short as possible) via two excellent sponsors of this site (Selby for Toslink, SPDIF cables) and CinemaLink for exceptional video cables. Strange, I discovered them both on the net without reference to this forum, but I can attest to the value of these cables in tweaking the best pic and sound out of a flinders box via upscaling through an Onkyo av receiver (which actually does upscale the s-video input) to an LG plasma. The difference in PQ is truly phenonominal. When I have the energy/inclination I will post on this forum (for what it's worth) a detailed inventory of SQ obtained by installing a premium 65cm dish (jonsa quality) in place of the el-cheapo hills dish. And how to tweak the dish and LNBF to obtain the best output. Have installed an identical system in 2 NSW locations....Blue Mountains and in Sydney's "lower north shore". It will include comparative flinders box LVL, CNR, BER and channel for each of the Austar platinum channels (minus sport which I don't subscribe to). This may be of some help to others who actually do want to do all possible to get the best PQ out of their austar flinders boxes.

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No, not quite, each ACCC reply letter posted here appears quite from different from each other, as was mine, which indicated they were monitoring Austar to ensure it did comply with it's legislitive requirements, and would continue to do so, and they suggested that the matter could also be referred to the NSW Minister for Fair Trading as the 3rd party decoder box issue may also be an issue for them. Others in NSW may wish to raise it via that avenue

That's the only part of your post that actually refers to the matter of discussion in the thread. Why you put all the rest of that in is beyond me.

The ACCC respondant was just being generous. There is no breach of the TPA as it stands. Austar is not in the business of selling STBs, it is in the business of providing pay television. For there to be a breach of the TPA Austar would also need to be involved in the sale of STBs. Since Austar does not sell STBs for any action to have any chance of success it would have to be proved that by enforcing the use of their own locked STBs Austar is reducing competition in the pay TV arena. Good luck with that!

Edited by DrP
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Why you put all the rest of that in is beyond me.

drp a lot is beyond you, perhaps it's an age thing! or perhaps u feel the need to be perceived as an expert, i've yet to read anything from you that leaves that impression though, but you do love to rattle on and on and on...a founding member of your own commentariat!

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1. Let me know when legal action is bought against Austar for enforcing the use of their own STBs.

2. Let me know what relevance the rest of the text in your post has to the subject of the thread.

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drp a lot is beyond you, perhaps it's an age thing! or perhaps u feel the need to be perceived as an expert, i've yet to read anything from you that leaves that impression though, but you do love to rattle on and on and on...a founding member of your own commentariat!

DrP is right. Let's say I'm and ISP and I sell modems. If I force people to use my modems, then the ACCC would be able to say "No, naughty, let people use their own modems, or else be punished, etc., etc.". However, if I run an ISP and don't sell modems, and require that my customers use my modem I provide, and only that one (I think Telstra cable fall into this category) and I don't sell Modems (like Austar, except with Pay TV and decoders), then I can say that. This is what happens with Austar.

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drp a lot is beyond you, perhaps it's an age thing! or perhaps u feel the need to be perceived as an expert, i've yet to read anything from you that leaves that impression though, but you do love to rattle on and on and on...a founding member of your own commentariat!

once more for the dummy...as u don't get ever seem to get anyone's point but your own, poor thing..

one, who was talking about legal action? your smartarse post alluded to the ACCC saying "stuff off" and "stop bothering us", well no one got that response from the ACCC and in my case, as I said they suggested the NSW Fair Trading Minister, but as i noted i had moved on wanted an immediate fix for the appalling pic quality that comes from simply plugging in a flinders decoder, so...

second, perhaps u dont own a plasma or require high end performance from austar...but those of us who do and like to get some reasonable value for the $100+ we pay per month, many of us used 3rd party decoders to get a superior AV outcome. This ended when 3rd party decoders were excluded by austar....so those who had these decoders and might like to use their flinders decoders to get the best possible pic might actually be interested in the experinces of like minded subscribers..

anyway drp what's it to you? did u ever use a 3rd party decoder with an austar platinum sub? do u connect to a plasma? do u use a flinders? what are your austar picture quality issues?

or is it simply that you get ya rocks off by appearing to know everything about everything....coz it sure seems to boil down to that...perhaps you might not the all round expert you'd have everyone think....

as always i await your pearls of true wisdom

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once more for the dummy...as u don't get ever seem to get anyone's point but your own, poor thing..

one, who was talking about legal action? your smartarse post alluded to the ACCC saying "stuff off" and "stop bothering us", well no one got that response from the ACCC and in my case, as I said they suggested the NSW Fair Trading Minister, but as i noted i had moved on wanted an immediate fix for the appalling pic quality that comes from simply plugging in a flinders decoder, so...

second, perhaps u dont own a plasma or require high end performance from austar...but those of us who do and like to get some reasonable value for the $100+ we pay per month, many of us used 3rd party decoders to get a superior AV outcome. This ended when 3rd party decoders were excluded by austar....so those who had these decoders and might like to use their flinders decoders to get the best possible pic might actually be interested in the experinces of like minded subscribers..

anyway drp what's it to you? did u ever use a 3rd party decoder with an austar platinum sub? do u connect to a plasma? do u use a flinders? what are your austar picture quality issues?

or is it simply that you get ya rocks off by appearing to know everything about everything....coz it sure seems to boil down to that...perhaps you might not the all round expert you'd have everyone think....

as always i await your pearls of true wisdom

Okay, I know I'm not DrP, and no doubt I'll enter another argument re: this very topic, but here is my understanding of the no 3rd party box rule (feel free to correct me if I'm wrong, anyone):

3rd party decoders were commonly used by pirates to provide pirate services. Because Austar, like many companies (i.e. Microsoft, various movie firms, etc.), they didn't like tis piracy, so they did something to attempt to knock it out: by knocking out the 3rd party decoders, they can kiss goodbye a load of pirate subscribers. Microsoft tried (and ultimately failed) with Activation and Windows\Office Genuine Advantage, and the movie people employed macrovision copy protection on DVD's.

Now, put yourself in Austar's shoes. Your losing money (and Austar announced a loss this year). If you get rid of 3rd party decoders, you get rid of a few legit subscribers, but a lot of pirate subscribers, and you can make some money, would you do this? I'd say yes. Would you?

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Oh my. It really is you, isn't it. You know you should change your posting style if you are going to change your name.

Let's begin:

one, who was talking about legal action?

I suggest you read Austech.

your smartarse post alluded to the ACCC saying "stuff off" and "stop bothering us", well no one got that response from the ACCC and in my case, as I said they suggested the NSW Fair Trading Minister

Which in essence told you to stuff off and stop bothering us as they aren't breaching the TPA.

, but as i noted i had moved on wanted an immediate fix for the appalling pic quality that comes from simply plugging in a flinders decoder, so...

second, perhaps u dont own a plasma or require high end performance from austar...but those of us who do and like o get some reasonable value for the $100+ we pay per month, many of us used 3rd party decoders to get a superior AV outcome. This ended when 3rd party decoders were excluded by austar....so those who had these decoders and might like to use their flinders decoders to get the best possible pic might actually be interested in the experinces of like minded subscribers..

Which has nothing at all to do with Austar changing their systems to prevent piracy, but that didn't stop you posting it.

anyway drp what's it to you? did u ever use a 3rd party decoder with an austar platinum sub? do u connect to a plasma? do u use a flinders? what are your austar picture quality issues?

For the record (as I have already stated elsewhere in like threads) I too was a user of 3rd party STBs but when I dared to suggest that Austar might prevent the use of 3rd party boxes - a few people one with a vested interest in the sale of the 3rd party STBs, another who liked to troll and a 3rd who just joined in because he didn't understand what was being said - decided to put the boot in and do what they could to attack me. Just like you are now. As for what sets I have to watch Austar on, you are correct. I don't have a plasma. I have a HD projector.

I've stated the quality issues with Austar time and time again, provided samples, explanation etc and once again copped much derision from idiots like you. Nothing much changes. Now crawl back into your hole.

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3rd party decoders were commonly used by pirates to provide pirate services. Because Austar, like many companies (i.e. Microsoft, various movie firms, etc.), they didn't like tis piracy, so they did something to attempt to knock it out: by knocking out the 3rd party decoders, they can kiss goodbye a load of pirate subscribers.

...

Now, put yourself in Austar's shoes. Your losing money (and Austar announced a loss this year). If you get rid of 3rd party decoders, you get rid of a few legit subscribers, but a lot of pirate subscribers, and you can make some money, would you do this? I'd say yes. Would you?

That sums it up fairly accurately.

Unfortunately due to Austar's aging and vulnerable fleet of STBs with unprotected firmware the pirates (gamma cards) quickly took Austar's firmware apart, found out what was being done and updated their cards firmware so that 3rd party STBs would once again work with them. This is something that I pointed out quite some time ago - not pay TV operator that uses Irdeto 2 version 4.x cards has been able to keep the gamma cards down. Austar will either have to roll out new cards to everyone or retire all their older STBs for more secure types (which was already in progress before the gamma cards made a big splash in Australia).

Edited by DrP
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That sums it up fairly accurately.

you must have accrued a few antagonists then (unsurprisingly) coz my logon has always been and is always the same since i joined years ago....perhaps if you listened to the discussions posted.....rather than your insessant know it all comments on every post, perhaps you may be taken somewhat more seriously...

a) the 3rd party decoder issue is history till somene inevitably cracks the block currently in place...think we all accept now that austar took the lazy way out coz it cost them less...

B) as i said i watch austar late night and i haven't seen any restarts....but you know everything, you think...

c) as i posted, the use of better quality cables can vastly improve what austar subcribers get through a flinders decoder so perhaps this may help those who used 3rd party decoder boxes like the mediastar which upscaled to hdmi to get exceptional picture and sound quality from austar....coz you sure as shite don't get much outta the decoder boxes without improvement...

now idiot, what is your inevitable retort going to be about .....coz sure as, you won't be able to help yourself...

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B) as i said i watch austar late night and i haven't seen any restarts....but you know everything, you think...

The restart does not necessarily happen at night, it may occur during the day. None-the-less your STBs are restarted regularly by Austar even if you won't admit to it. There are plenty of other members of this forum that are happy to state that they have observed this behaviour, but I guess they are making it up too.

c) as i posted, the use of better quality cables can vastly improve what austar subcribers get through a flinders decoder so perhaps this may help those who used 3rd party decoder boxes like the mediastar which upscaled to hdmi to get exceptional picture and sound quality from austar....coz you sure as shite don't get much outta the decoder boxes without improvement...

Which still has nothing at all to do with the topic of this thread and has been covered ad-nauseum in other threads.

Of course you have had this name since you started using it. Just the same as your other names haven't changed either. As I said, if you are going to try to pretend to be another user, its best to change your posting style.

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DrP is right. Let's say I'm and ISP and I sell modems. If I force people to use my modems, then the ACCC would be able to say "No, naughty, let people use their own modems, or else be punished, etc., etc.". However, if I run an ISP and don't sell modems, and require that my customers use my modem I provide, and only that one (I think Telstra cable fall into this category) and I don't sell Modems (like Austar, except with Pay TV and decoders), then I can say that. This is what happens with Austar.

Douglas, I think we can all agree the 3rd party issue is dead for the moment, but for those of us who were platinum austar subscribers who got a great picture outta non-austar decoders and then had to revert to a basically unwatchable product it was damn annoying regardless of austar's understandable wish to stop piracy....

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Douglas, I think we can all agree the 3rd party issue is dead for the moment, but for those of us who were platinum austar subscribers who got a great picture outta non-austar decoders and then had to revert to a basically unwatchable product it was damn annoying regardless of austar's understandable wish to stop piracy....

well if people hadn't had a 3rd party box in the first place, people would not have known any better as to what "great picture" really means. ;-)

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Its a stretch to say that Austar's picture was 'great' even with 3rd party equipment. Grating might be a better choice of word.

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Its a stretch to say that Austar's picture was 'great' even with 3rd party equipment. Grating might be a better choice of word.

Thats only because people sacrifice to equipment with different features for the same amount of money, not one with brilliant picture quality :-)

Now, instead of sitting at home recording (effectively hoarding content you will probably never have time to see again) and watching Austar, go do something physical instead and experience something real and not just watch it on TV. I hear the snow is great this year! I would trade the money I spend on Austar for a whole year for a one week experience at the snow instead anyday! ;-)

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Douglas, I think we can all agree the 3rd party issue is dead for the moment, but for those of us who were platinum austar subscribers who got a great picture outta non-austar decoders and then had to revert to a basically unwatchable product it was damn annoying regardless of austar's understandable wish to stop piracy....

My grandfather who is a platinum subscriber and is a home theatre guru has never complained about picture quality. And, to my knowledge, he still uses the cables that came with his Omega box over six years ago.

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3rd party decoders were commonly used by pirates to provide pirate services.

And also by people with a legitimate subscriber card who wanted component or RGB out and digital audio, which the better third party boxes delivered. Until a year ago austar didnt give a rats arse about either component or digital audio, and mostly its still a suck it ans see lottery choice whether you get it or not unless you pay more for the mystar

Because Austar, like many companies (i.e. Microsoft, various movie firms, etc.), they didn't like tis piracy, so they did something to attempt to knock it out: by knocking out the 3rd party decoders, they can kiss goodbye a load of pirate subscribers. Microsoft tried (and ultimately failed) with Activation and Windows\Office Genuine Advantage, and the movie people employed macrovision copy protection on DVD's.

Activation and Windows\Office Genuine Advantage: currently easily defeated in both XP and Vista

macrovision: even easier to defeat, and thanks to a fark up by a hardware manufacturer the algorithm of dvd encryption was determined, hence the billions of blank dvds being sold

And finally, as DrP has hinted because Austar still use 4.1s and unprotected firmware, GammaV2 is useable on most third party Irdeto compliant STBs, even crappy non licenced irdeto boxes, so all Austar have done in effect is piss off their legitimate customers who want a better picture and sound and posssibly a PVR not crippled like the Mystar is, so what was the point? I for one still cant see why Austar cant just go third party to foxtel/videoguard/nds and use/onsell licenced foxtel stbs like the IQ and the IQ2. Optus onsells Foxtel and IQ1, so why cant Austar? If Susta had any sense they would just onsell, replace all Irdeto boxes with IQs and then Austar wouldnt have to fork out the bickies for HD PVR development as its already done, Whiteys would be dead and the picture/audio/crappy Titan/Omega etc etc issue would be dead and buried. So whats stopping them? Foxtel wont play? A contract they cant get out of in the near future with Mindport/Irdeto? or both?

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Who in their right mind would go to select. Even mentioning that you would subscribe to them shows you are a moron.

and it costs about $400 to get installed. You got to buy your own equiptment

Ive never subscribed to Select so I dont know if the support is any good or not, but its ideal for people who dont have $100 a month and dont want a 2 year contract, not everyone is into foxsports

As for $400 :rolleyes: if you hunt around you can get a brand new 65cm dish and lnb for $80, 30 m of quad cable for $30, an outlet for $5, and an irdeto compliant STB for <$100, thats nowhere near $400, well it wasnt when i went to school, maybe maths has changed since then :lol: u just need to do some chasing. PAS8 or whatever its called these days is one of the strongest ku band birds in the sky and finding it and locking is a lot simpler than you think, a 10 year could do it.

As for using your own equipment, a lot of people see that as a bonus

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Activation and Windows\Office Genuine Advantage: currently easily defeated in both XP and Vista

macrovision: even easier to defeat, and thanks to a fark up by a hardware manufacturer the algorithm of dvd encryption was determined, hence the billions of blank dvds being sold

I know all this - I did mention that Microsoft tried and ultimatley failed with them. Didn't mention macrovision had been defeated, but I knew that anyway (I believe it's common knowledge: to record something with it, use a video stabilizer. To copy a DVD, use one of many freely available programs).

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Whew, you ARE annoyed!!!

But rather than blame Austar for all this we should blame the pirates. If they had not been taking for free what we have been paying for then maybe the cost might have come down because of the broader subscriber base & we might still have been able to use whatever PVR etc we chose.

But that is history now so it is not much use throwing sand in the sandbox about it all.

Bottom line, it is a business and Austar have been losing money until recently so their charges are not really a rip off. It is a free country - we do not have to subscribe.

However, as I posted above, I'll be shifting across to Select as soon as the contract runs out and will not be joining the Mystar fiasco.

John

i'm not sure about that john as far as i know pirates have been sunk for years and austars prices just keep going up and up if they require a broader base then they need to bring down their prices select tv doesn't have as much to offer but $29.95/m is more realistic in my opinion

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ias far as i know pirates have been sunk for years and austars prices just keep going up and up

Sunk? I dont think so mate, maybe temporarily run ashore but they arent sunk yet

Jan 2004 brought a temporary end to unauthorised card based piracy of Austar and Foxtel with the introduction of Irdeto2 and NDS respectively. Irdeto2 was compromised around mid last year by "the gamma team" and unauthorised cards, even ones you could do yourself really got going in this country around september last year. AFAIK only the DIY variety have been killed, the DIY account details were posted on just about every sat forum in the country and overseas as well, which made it very easy for Austar to kill them, but they havent been successful (yet) in killing the "seller" cards. "Seller" pirate cards were easily available until about march this year when a federal police raid dramatically reduced supply, also resulting in the "change" by Austar that made third party STBs useless with genuine Austar cards. The pirates responded with a change of the operating system on their unauthorised cards so they still work with third party STBs. I dont know any sellers so I cant really comment if the cards are still readily available, if there are sellers still out there they seem to have gone hush hush. maybe its now a not what you know but who you know to get one. As I said, I dont know any sellers so who knows if supply has been affected by the big bust in March.

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OK, so since I haven't been into 3rd Party, Gamma, Whiteys' etc, since the demise of the Goldy. Will a Gamma/Whitey work in a Flinders Austar box? That is, back in the Goldy days you paid for the basic, stuck in your Goldy and got the lot! Can this be done with a whitey??

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But rather than blame Austar for all this we should blame the pirates. If they had not been taking for free what we have been paying for then maybe the cost might have come down because of the broader subscriber base & we might still have been able to use whatever PVR etc we chose.
i'm not sure about that john as far as i know pirates have been sunk for years and austars prices just keep going up and up if they require a broader base then they need to bring down their prices select tv doesn't have as much to offer but $29.95/m is more realistic in my opinion

The problem is not the pirates. It's the account defaulters and Austar/Foxtel for no credit checks.

A very common example is:

Foxtel offers free install plus 1st month free. The door sellers come into town and run riot in our darker cousin areas. Many people sign up just because of the free deal, then default on payments because they can't afford it. Foxtel then disconnects them. It doesn't end here....

Next time a free offer is available and the door sellers are around, these same people do exactly the same thing.

As an ex-installer, I've been to the same houses over and over again each time a free deal is offered.

Now, here's a rough basic cost breakdown.

Door seller: $100 per signup

Installer: $230 for simple CBS install. $65 if dish in place. Much more for IQ and multirooms.

Installer Disconnect: $45

Fees to BSA/Downer: $???

So far, we have $400+ spent and STB costs even before the provider see's a return.

There is no credit check or past account check done. They just get signed up.

So when this cycle happens over and over again, who pays? It's the current subscriber base though higher fees.

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The problem is not the pirates. It's the account defaulters and Austar/Foxtel for no credit checks.

A very common example is:

Foxtel offers free install plus 1st month free. The door sellers come into town and run riot in our darker cousin areas. Many people sign up just because of the free deal, then default on payments because they can't afford it. Foxtel then disconnects them. It doesn't end here....

Next time a free offer is available and the door sellers are around, these same people do exactly the same thing.

As an ex-installer, I've been to the same houses over and over again each time a free deal is offered.

Now, here's a rough basic cost breakdown.

Door seller: $100 per signup

Installer: $230 for simple CBS install. $65 if dish in place. Much more for IQ and multirooms.

Installer Disconnect: $45

Fees to BSA/Downer: $???

So far, we have $400+ spent and STB costs even before the provider see's a return.

There is no credit check or past account check done. They just get signed up.

So when this cycle happens over and over again, who pays? It's the current subscriber base though higher fees.

ok interesting insight it makes sence
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  • 3 months later...
I've never seen the reason why people want to use 3rd Party decoders. I like the MyStar (we're one of the lucky few, or lucky one, who don't have to restart it often), and wouldn't give it up for all the chocolate in the space-time continuum. Granted it has it's flaws, but, then again, pretty much everything has flaws.

And besides, on 3rd party boxes, you have problems such as these and the fact you can't get the Weather Active, etc., stuff would annoy me. And besides, the boxes they give you are free. Why fork out for something that does the job competently?

My god are you serious? I was using my Dreambox quite nicely until Auscrap decided to change things about, which then stopped me from using my 3rd Party STB and now have to use their POS STBs!

I could schedule recordings, etc etc and at a price that cost me nothing! Now to get the same service they want me to use this POS myStar MuthaF**ker device!

Not to mention I could schedule all this from my computer and watch Austar via a web interface to my dreambox, man were those the days.

Now to add more salt into my already hatred Auscrap heart, they have moved some Rugby games from Fox Sports to Sentanta Sports channel! F**k em! Now I have to subcribe to this BS channel to watch my rugby! Bast*rds!

Auscrap can lick me big black sweety nut sacks.

YEAH! <_<

Edited by Tumatawhero
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  • 10 months later...
The problem is not the pirates. It's the account defaulters and Austar/Foxtel for no credit checks.

Yes, this has to contribute heavily to the prices because either way Fox doesn't pay the costs - customers do.

A very common example is:

Foxtel offers free install plus 1st month free. The door sellers come into town and run riot in our darker cousin areas. Many people sign up just because of the free deal, then default on payments because they can't afford it. Foxtel then disconnects them. It doesn't end here....

Next time a free offer is available and the door sellers are around, these same people do exactly the same thing.

Would not deny that this happens, but I am sure there are plenty of WASPs that do exactly the same as your "darker cousins". Strange point to make.

As an ex-installer, I've been to the same houses over and over again each time a free deal is offered.

Now, here's a rough basic cost breakdown.

Door seller: $100 per signup

Installer: $230 for simple CBS install. $65 if dish in place. Much more for IQ and multirooms.

Installer Disconnect: $45

Fees to BSA/Downer: $???

So far, we have $400+ spent and STB costs even before the provider see's a return.

There is no credit check or past account check done. They just get signed up.

There is some confusion here between actual costs to Fox (the $100 to the door seller is a genuine cost, as are the fees to the BSA) and the prices that Fox charge (all the rest of them) to do the installations. The latter are not necessarily the retail costs at all, of course.

So when this cycle happens over and over again, who pays? It's the current subscriber base though higher fees.

Again, wouldn't dispute the reasoning, but I suspect that Fox have had their bean counters do the sums and find it is cheaper to do this and pick up a few more genuine subscribers as part of their overall advertising scheme. Also, their current subscribers have the option to protest by not paying for Foxtel any more, but they fear the withdrawal symptoms and Fox know this.

I don't dispute that I think, like you, this business method makes very little sense, but there is little in economics (especially in big monopolies) that looks like common sense.

Cheers,

Al.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Interesting to see this quite old thread is still alive.

Well I've been with the Select TV crowd for some time now. Initially I had trouble recording on the Toppy 5000 but thanks to help here now have 100% success rate. :rolleyes: I'm unable to use the 2 tuners so it is effectively a single tuner unit but because we have seen most of the documentary programs (repeated ad nauseum) we are usually only recording a few movies and can dodge clashes. We miss the History and Bio channels but gave up paying Select extra for the Discovery ones as we found little left of interest.

However I'm still perplexed about negative comments re PQ. Yes it is only SD but we find most of the movies from 1990 on scale up as well as they do on FTA and are quite acceptable quality. ^_^

But again, we are now finding we have looked at many of those movies. However the really good ones (around 2/3 a week) are worth revisiting.

Bottom line is we find we have heaps to view from FTA, particularly ABC & SBS, so do not need a lot more from satellite -> Select fills that bill quite well.

I just looked at all the Austar spin re HD and their HD Mystar but am not the slightest bit tempted. I wonder where their boxes are coming from with only 160GD HDD and no HDMI connector.

Interesting times.

John

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