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Verizon Steps in to Fix Microsoft's IPTV

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the well-here's-your-problem dept.

96

NYGiant writes "Microsoft IPTV isn't cutting it for Verizon, Ars Technica reports, so they've taken over parts of the project. Verizon is in a rush to perfect its IPTV service, which is based on Microsoft's IPTV software. The problem is that to run well, Microsoft's software needs more memory than Verizon's set top boxes ship with. From the article: 'Under the terms of that deal, Verizon would use Microsoft's Foundation Edition middleware stack. Microsoft would also supply a set of customer-facing applications. While Foundation Edition remains in use by Verizon, the development of the other applications was taken over by Verizon engineers.'"

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I'm confused (1)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117049)

Should I laugh or cry?

Re:I'm confused (1)

pilgrim23 (716938) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117056)

It is common after a full meal to feel bloated....

Re:I'm confused (-1, Flamebait)

Locutus (9039) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117616)

laugh and LOL and laugh hard. This should not be a surprise to anybody except the idiots who think just because Microsoft has billions, they are more than a marketing company.

Can't wait to see the Cray settop box, and fiber channel required to show HDTV over MS-IPTV and still have 5+ second channel change delays. But who knows, maybe they'll find that by putting a SAN disk on the telephone poles will help and nothing else but wait for the next version of MS-IPTV will save them. Promise, the next version will be the best MS-IPTV ever. Honest. It's SOP for MS and the fools who use their stuff. IMO.

So laugh and laugh long and hard. I almost couldn't type this since I got the hiccups from laughing so much.

LoB

Microsoft fail again... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16117065)

... film at 11

Not really; Verizon is failing (4, Insightful)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117751)

Verizon paid MS to do a job. Because MS does the same oh/same oh, Verizon found the software unusable. So rather than suing MS and getting back their money for a failed job, they are spending loads of money to have a crap system that can run better. In addition, I would guess that the Verizon ppl will turn over the code to MS. IOW, the Verizon managers are so bad, that they do not want to admit that what they bought, failed.

Re:Not really; Verizon is failing (1)

maverick41 (574379) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118546)

Wow...and I thought this was Slashdot, not Techdirt!

Rather than dump an innovative flagship product, Verizon decided to get its collective hands dirty to fix problems Microsoft created.
Rather than sabotage the same flagship product with bad publicity about their supplier, Verizon takes over and does things right.

Do you have another BETTER suggestion, or are you just the first (paper) match in a flame war?

Re:Not really; Verizon is failing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16122935)

They should insist that MS fix the problem, or they should use a number of other products. In addition, MS should pay for all the fixes that verizon is doing. This is standard in the business world, except when the buyer is made to look worse by doing so. Then they try to cover it up.

Re:Not really; Verizon is failing (1)

NoMaster (142776) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118590)

Because MS does the same oh/same oh, Verizon ...
Wow, that's a new one on me. My education in English pre-dates the Internet, but isn't the phrase "same old same old"?

I prefer the "u" in honour as it seems to be missing these days.
Myself, I'm simpler than that - I just prefer the words I read to make some sort of sense...

Re:Not really; Verizon is failing (1)

WilliamSChips (793741) | more than 7 years ago | (#16121149)

Myself, I'm simpler than that - I just prefer the words I read to make some sort of sense...
Which is why I use the term "honor". I'll bet most people don't know this, but the Latin word is honor, honoris.(Ergo the so-called cursus honorum of Roman government.) Honour is a bastardization of the French word honeur(I might not be spelling the 'hon' part right but I know it ends in 'eur') and is the one that makes no sense whatsoever.

Netcraft confirms it... (1)

novus ordo (843883) | more than 7 years ago | (#16119189)

...Verizon is failing

Vista Embedded ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16117067)

Maybe if they didn't try to squeeze in Vista Embedded...

If it's a dig at microsoft, no matter how small... (1, Insightful)

mumblestheclown (569987) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117070)

If it's a dig at microsoft, no matter how small.... it's news on slashdot.

Re:If it's a dig at microsoft, no matter how small (2, Insightful)

just_another_sean (919159) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117290)

It's just so darn easy to do though. Microsoft practically writes the jokes themselves.

And on a more serious note a major application provider deciding that an MS Solution is too
bloated and impractical to use is hardly small. As a developer and someone who has to carefully
help choose software and the foundation for solutions for my company I'm interested in how major
players like Verizon fare with MS software.

Re:If it's a dig at microsoft, no matter how small (1)

Sillygates (967271) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117558)

Not enough memory? Isn't that when they should be spending that extra $5 to put in another 128MB?

Re:If it's a dig at microsoft, no matter how small (1)

locnar42 (591631) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117921)

A $5 difference in the cost of an embedded system that is being mass produced adds up to a lot of money. A change in software has a one time cost. A change in hardware is multiplied by the million or so units they plan to ship. Not to mention, reducing the memory usage may improve the overall responsiveness of the system leading to a more satisfactory user experience. In a system like this, that can go a long way to moving the units out the door.

Re:If it's a dig at microsoft, no matter how small (1)

Sillygates (967271) | more than 7 years ago | (#16122030)

its worth it if the system doesn't run right ;-)

Re:If it's a dig at microsoft, no matter how small (1)

www.sorehands.com (142825) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117724)

Come on.....

MFC stood for Microsoft Fucked Class. It took quite a while before people started using it. At 1.X it was complete crap.

Many of their layers tended to be buggy, fat, and slow. Why would anyone be suprised? It is because they are a big company and the PHBs order it used. When at DTS, I had a VP that did not push Microsoft down our throats for development, but that may be because he is an MIT grad and knew the technical aspects.

Re:If it's a dig at microsoft, no matter how small (1)

Overly Critical Guy (663429) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118250)

This is pretty significant tech news, given Microsoft's push for IPTV into the living room. Verizon can't get it to run on their hardware and is having to step in.

It's especially newsworthy in contrast to this week's Apple iTV announcement.

Re:If it's a dig at microsoft, no matter how small (1)

RobertM1968 (951074) | more than 7 years ago | (#16127431)

The bad thing, as history has proven, is that MS is probably going to gain from this by having access to the streamlined code that Verizon makes.

I'm wondering if that was an aspect of their deal that MS was counting on or, now just looking forward to?

How much memory does it take to (2, Funny)

ClaraBow (212734) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117074)

display the blue screen of death? It's only a joke :)

Re:How much memory does it take to (5, Funny)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117106)

How much memory does it take to display the blue screen of death?
Well, the blue screen of death is in text mode 80x25, I think. That means two bytes for each character (ASCII code + color). That totals up to 80x25x2 bytes = 4000 bytes.

It's only a joke :)
I knew I should've read your post to the end before replying.

Re:How much memory does it take to (1)

Millenniumman (924859) | more than 7 years ago | (#16121287)

<joke> Well in that case, 640k of memory is excessive for a Windows user. Maybe 6k, just in case they come out with a fancier BSOD. </joke>

Re:How much memory does it take to (1)

WilliamSChips (793741) | more than 7 years ago | (#16125010)

Well, the blue screen of death is in text mode 80x25, I think. That means two bytes for each character (ASCII code + color). That totals up to 80x25x2 bytes = 4000 bytes.
Not in Windows 2000. ;)

That's a silly question (2, Funny)

Aeamarth (943939) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117461)

Everybody knows 640k should be enough!!

Shocked, I say! (4, Interesting)

WhiteWolf666 (145211) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117100)

A Microsoft Product?

Late, buggy, out of spec, and bloated?

Who'da thunk?

Shocked, I tell you! Shocked!

What I don't understand is why all the major TV players are signing on with Microsoft. Every Microsoft IPTV deployment has been buggy, overbudget, late, and required significantly higher requirements than Microsoft's initial stipulations. They must be vastly underbidding everyone else on the market; I'd guess Microsoft is spending hundred of millions, if not billions, on breaking into this market.

I'd love to see one of these Microsoft IPTV deployments flop (I'm betting on SBC's deployment). That'll drive the market away from the Vole, regardless of how cheap they're willing to do the (shoddy, useless) work.

How much it feel to work in one of these Microsoft shops? How does it feel to know that cut-rate out-sourced contracted programmers from India with no background on the project did it better and faster than you? I know that India has a wealth of high-quality programmers, but the general rule is that in-house (especially at major programming shops in the U.S.) is better than out-sourced; just more expensive.

In this case, it seems that with Microsoft you pay more, and get less. Given their monopoly status, I guess that is appropriate. Monopoly-sized market distortions = inefficency. It's too bad that survival of the fittest takes so long to damage a monopoly.

Re:Shocked, I say! (2, Interesting)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117216)

What I don't understand is why all the major TV players are signing on with Microsoft.

It's the mantra. In the 1980s it was "nobody evet got fired for buying IBM", today it's "nobody ever got fired for buying Microsoft".

Re:Shocked, I say! (1)

DannyO152 (544940) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118335)

Operating system market share is irrelevant. This is Hollywood and the media. If two people partner, one of the parties is giving money to the other. I think Microsoft is buying their alliances.

Re:Shocked, I say! (1)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117244)

What I don't understand is why all the major TV players are signing on with Microsoft.

The same reason most gas stations don't sell diesel fuel, market share. Also, if a product is shipped with a popular OS the greater the chance stupid f'n people will assume it is the default or required software. If you have ever seen two dumb pieces of sh** argue over which icon, AOL or IE, is the internet without succumbing to the temptation to rip their... sorry.

My point: A perfect example is the number of people that call Internet Explorer "the internet".

Re:Shocked, I say! (5, Funny)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117300)

A perfect example is the number of people that call Internet Explorer "the internet".

Thankfully my kid set me straight on that one. Now I know that the internet is that cute little fox that's on fire.

Re:Shocked, I say! (1)

gooman (709147) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117769)

Ha, you're both wrong! Stupid noobs.

It's tubes and you get to it with the AOL icon.

Re:Shocked, I say! (1)

just_another_sean (919159) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118367)

So it's not a truck? Or series of tubes. Man I just can't figure these internet things out!

Re:Shocked, I say! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16119680)

You are all wrong. Everybody knows it is pixie postmen who transport the packets in specially crafted vehicles down the global pixie highway.

Re:Shocked, I say! (2, Informative)

Wesley Felter (138342) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117383)

But in cable boxes, Microsoft's market share is near zero. The hardware is all made by Cisco/Scienfic Atlanta and Motorola/General Instrument, and I'd guess that they also have their own software stacks.

Re:Shocked, I say! (1)

Plutonite (999141) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118377)

and I'd guess that they also have their own software stacks.

Well I hope to God they do, because otherwise the internets and all their tubes will be pwned very soon.

Re:Shocked, I say! (1)

arodland (127775) | more than 7 years ago | (#16119042)

Basically every gas station I've seen big enough to have more than, say, three pumps, had one pump with diesel fuel available. And what do you meant that the internet isn't "that blue thing"? I can see the icon right now. It says "The Internet".

Re:Shocked, I say! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16117496)

What I don't understand is why all the major TV players are signing on with Microsoft

Easy, microsoft convinced them of their monopoly power (true) and also their totally unbreakable DRM (a lie).

Re:Shocked, I say! (1)

daeg (828071) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117518)

Because if Verizon can push the extra cost blame onto Microsoft, they can push it back onto consumers. When the cost overrun is paid for, Verizon keeps the price hike in place so long as they have few competitors.

Not all businesses or business models are in the business of producing the best product for the least amount of money.

16 or 32 bit thunk? (1)

XHIIHIIHX (918333) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117709)

Who'da thunk?

That depends, is that a 16 bit thunk or one of the new windows vista 32 bit thunks?

Re:Shocked, I say! (2, Interesting)

astrosmash (3561) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118052)

I have a theory.

Back in the eighties and early nineties Microsoft wasn't much of a software company. They had a (well deserved) reputation for simplistic, unsophisticated, poor quality software, and they certainly never would have survived without the truck loads of free money coming in from their MS-DOS royalties.

Their transformation into a real software company in the early nineties is well documented, and while the quality of their software greatly improved they were still burdened with a reputation for unsophisticated, poor quality software (some of it deserved, some not). As a result, I think Microsoft engineers tend to over-compensate for this reputation by dramatically over-designing and over-engineering most of their modern software. But what else can you do if you must still support Win9x running on an MS-DOS/FAT file system?

It's no surprise to me that their software would overshoot the hardware requirements. Simple, elegant solutions are just not in cards for Microsoft engineers.

MS gives IPTV for free (0)

mveloso (325617) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118121)

MS gives the IPTV infrastructure away for free, or at least that's what I understand. That means back-end servers, software, etc.

It's yet another failed attempt for MS to mean something outside of the Windows/Office monopoly...and they're destroying the economics of the business in the process. Too bad there isn't an anti-dumping law for domestic companies.

Re:Shocked, I say! (1)

NoMaster (142776) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118564)

Every Microsoft IPTV deployment has been buggy, overbudget, late, and required significantly higher requirements than Microsoft's initial stipulations.
Actually, is there even one deployment in progress or completed? Because, last I looked (18 months or so ago), there wasn't - sure, there were trials going on, but no deployment - because of pretty much the same problems Verizon have encountered.

In fact at that time, most players were dumping MS IPTV in favour of a solution from ?Nokia?

Re:Shocked, I say! (1)

dago (25724) | more than 7 years ago | (#16119233)

Club Internet [club-internet.fr] who is a minor ISP in France. But you're right, all MS TV deployments have been late, buggy and overbudget. In france, all major ISP have been proposing TV for something like 2 years.

The nice marketing twist is that Club Internet propose Microsoft TV as an ... exclusivity !

Re:Shocked, I say! (1)

NoMaster (142776) | more than 7 years ago | (#16119329)

Interesting - I didn't know about Club Internet, but I remember reading a while ago that France Telecom / Orange was planning on ditching MS in favour of something that actually worked - Nokia, or maybe Siemens.

I'm particularly intrigued by their choice of a pink tampon as representative of the average clubinternet user... ;-)

Re:Shocked, I say! (1)

dago (25724) | more than 7 years ago | (#16120454)

FT effectively ditched MS in favor of Siemens (IIRC). But they already had one competitor (Free) who was proposing triple-play bundles, that means they couldn't just stay and listen to microsoft's next-version-will-be-perfect-we-swear-just-waith-s ix-more-months speeches.

Re:Shocked, I say! (1)

yabos (719499) | more than 7 years ago | (#16120361)

Bell Canada has their IPTV deployed in some condos in Toronto mostly. They're going very slow with their deployment since last year they had summer 2006 as the completion date and as far as anyone can tell they haven't really deployed much more since last year. They're upgrading their remote terminals but not installing a lot of IPTV over DSL yet. This might have to do with the MS software but I don't know.

Another blow for outsourcing (3, Insightful)

glomph (2644) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117115)

I'm as virulent a Microsoft-hater as you'll find on Slashdot, but the lesson here is not that they suck (which they do, badly). It's a lesson about company A (Verizon in this case) subbing out an important business segment to company B (Microsoft, the promise-anything, and ship whatever company). If something is THAT important to your business, dammit, get it done yourself! 9 out of 10 times something goes to shit, and you either had smart lawyers (as Verizon clearly did) that at least gives you -some- chance of inconveniently, expensively bailing the project out.

The deal-making pinheads will never figure this out however, their retinas, and the brains behind them, are all fatigued from staring at Powerpoint slides and Blackberry thingies.

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16117146)

Isn't it a shame that all the people who are talented enough to write good TV software spend so much time posting on Slashdot about how (a) Microsoft sucks and (b) they don't own a TV?

The irony is delicious. Delicious, del.icio.us [delicious.com] irony.

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (1)

udderly (890305) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117179)

Microsoft, the promise-anything, and ship whatever company

That's funny--good one. That's one of the things I like about /., there's always a few good sayings floating around. My all time /. favorite is still "asshat." I don't understand what it means, but it just sounds funny.

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16117268)

You're an asshat.

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (3, Funny)

cyber-vandal (148830) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117378)

It's a hat for your ass, where's the confusion?

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (1)

udderly (890305) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117525)

Okay, knock it off...I just about sprayed a mouthful of gin and tonic all over my keyboard and monitor. Luckily only a little came up through my nose.

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (1)

Orange Crush (934731) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118269)

It's a hat for your ass, where's the confusion?

Really? I always thought it meant "One's ass worn on one's head like a hat." I suppose either definition has its own merits.

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (1)

yabos (719499) | more than 7 years ago | (#16120371)

I always thought it meant stick your head up your ass so you have an asshat.

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (1)

Danga (307709) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117817)

My all time /. favorite is still "asshat." I don't understand what it means, but it just sounds funny.

It is when one has their head up their ass, thus wearing their ass as a hat. I guess it is an abbreviation, instead of saying "get your head out of your ass" you just call the person an "asshat" and save your breath to speak to someone of intelligence.

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (2, Funny)

arodland (127775) | more than 7 years ago | (#16119053)

Now apply your amazing linguistic and analytical skills to "no-talent assclown" plz

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (1)

evilviper (135110) | more than 7 years ago | (#16120415)

It is when one has their head up their ass, thus wearing their ass as a hat.

But wouldn't that then make it an ass-scarf/ass-necklace/ass-collar/ass-helmet/ass-m uffs?

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (2, Informative)

WhiteWolf666 (145211) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117183)

Did you read the article????

This is most CERTAINLY not about the ills of out-sourcing.

How did Verizon get the job done?

Hint: They did it in India/Texas.
Hint2: They didn't use Verizon employees.

This is most certainly a lesson in how Microsoft sucks.

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (1)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117305)

India/Texas.

India, Texas, What is the difference? High tech people from both our countries get low salaries and no respect from the US.

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (1)

Reaperducer (871695) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118177)

India, Texas, What is the difference?

Well, according to this [houstonarchitecture.info] , Texas is hotter and dirtier than India. Does that count?

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (1)

evilviper (135110) | more than 7 years ago | (#16120433)

This is most CERTAINLY not about the ills of out-sourcing.

Did you read what he wrote???

He explained it very clearly: "If something is THAT important to your business, dammit, get it done yourself!"

Having your business depending on an unfinished piece of software, from a company outside your control, is quite simply, stupid. And Verizon got to find that out the kinda-hard-way... it could have been much worse.

This is most certainly a lesson in how Microsoft sucks.

Microsoft sucks, but Verizon was stupid to depend so much on them (or any other company) in the first place.

Re:Another blow for outsourcing (1)

bigpat (158134) | more than 7 years ago | (#16119005)

t's a lesson about company A (Verizon in this case) subbing out an important business segment to company B (Microsoft, the promise-anything, and ship whatever company). If something is THAT important to your business, dammit, get it done yourself!

It is very common for a software project to fail the first time around. Often a combination of uncertain requirements, inexperienced developers and bad management combine to make it nearly impossible to succeed the first time around. As long as Verizon learned the lessons from Microsoft's failure then this was a very smart plan. Outsource the failure part, then learn from the mistakes so your own development team gets a shortcut to success.

A Good Day For Microsoft (3, Informative)

mpapet (761907) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117192)

They have Verizon backed so far into a corner that it appears verizon can't walk away. MS is laughing all the way to the bank on this one.

The license costs that one monopoly is paying the other will, no doubt, lead to a -really- expensive set top box.

Re:A Good Day For Microsoft (2, Interesting)

redphive (175243) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117289)

Having worked in the cable television industry for the past 15 or so years, I am going to have to highlight the fact that IPTV is far from a monopoly. Moreover, Verizon could hardly be called a monopoly, with emerging technologies such as VoIP, Cellular and Cable based Digital Phone service (yes it is just VoIP but is typically handled across a fully managed network) as well as other ISP options, they are set to face customer erosion in the near future.

Re:Regulation Regulation Regulations! (5, Insightful)

mpapet (761907) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117399)

IPTV is far from a monopoly
Yeah, and that's because the bill giving them the "national overlay" monopoly is still wending it's way through the system. http://telephonyonline.com/regulatory/news/congres s_cable_franchise_030906/ [telephonyonline.com]
First-movers and whatever is left for cable companies in the States are dead as soon as this one passes.

And then there's:
VOIP Regulated away to the telcos/cable co's. Proverbial toll roads on the internet will be the final nail in the coffin.
CellularIs my service better or cheaper than it was 5 years ago? No. Please explain how they would jam -so- many bits down the average phone connection?
Digital Phone ServiceIs this service better or cheaper than my POTS service? As a former subscriber no. Emphatically no.

I agree they are set to see erosion of their customer base, but I would argue that they aren't meeting competitors in the marketplace, they are meeting them in Washington DC, where they have the money to raise barriers to entry. The average quickie-mart economicthink doesn't apply.

Re:A Good Day For Microsoft (2, Insightful)

Ucklak (755284) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117293)

I wonder if this could be one of those Embrace - Extend - Extinguish type of deals where Verizon, with all the assets Microsoft wants, ends up having to raise money by selling assets or getting bought out or sold.

Didn't the pinheads at Verizon read into their coporate history of dealing with this company?
There has been very few if any successful partnerships with Microsoft.

I think the only successful ones are the hardware related where Microsoft is basically a customer.

a business plan? (3, Informative)

geoff lane (93738) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117204)

"The real goal is to figure out a way to get an 'operating system'
royalty per TV. 10's of millions of TV's per year at $10-$20 per TV
is a nice little 'operating system' business." -- Jeff Raikes of Microsoft

Re:a business plan? (1)

ptbarnett (159784) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118057)

Microsoft tried to do this with Dish Network.

Dish's first PVRs (the DishPlayer 7100 and 7200) ran Windows software (CE, I think). Microsoft got a monthly royalty for every one of them, so Dish refused to waive the PVR fee, even though they were doing so for later PVRs.

The Microsoft PVR software was a piece of crap. It would regularly do the equivalent of a "BSOD", turning the screen to a shade of pink. Dish developed their own PVR and dumped the DishPlayer as fast as they could. They offered me a substantial discount to upgrade, but never offered an outright swap for a newer one.

At one point, they filed a suit against Microsoft, but I don't know if it ever went anywhere. It was so bad that there was a SEPARATE option in the phone system for DishPlayer tech support -- they had to maintain an army of CSRs that were specially trained for that abomination.

Not IPTV! (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16117259)

Just for the record, FIOS TV is not IPTV. IPTV is delivery of television over the internet. Verizon's FIOS delivers TV over fiber, than to coax--exactly as cable systems do. The difference is that the termination of the fiber in FIOS is at the side of the house, while in a traditional cable environment, the fiber is terminated further upstream (at a central office of sorts).

Re:Not IPTV! (4, Insightful)

chrisbtoo (41029) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117491)


IPTV is delivery of television over the internet.


Nope, IPTV is delivery of television over the Internet Protocol. It doesn't necessarily have to involve "The Internet", and could just as easily be run over these fibre lines as over DSL, which is also common.

Re:Not IPTV! (4, Funny)

R.Mo_Robert (737913) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118139)

You're both wrong, IPTV is Iowa Public Television and has been for over 25 years. :) (And even longer under various other names.)

Mwuhahaha, just kidding. That really is what it's called, though (yes, I'm an Iowan), and every time I read about the "new" IPTV I have to force myself to think that it's not what my first reaction tells me.

Re:Not IPTV! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16118254)

True, but the first poster is correct - FIOS TV is analog (wavelength multiplex) all the way.

Well (4, Funny)

DAldredge (2353) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117266)

I guess that the Microsoft apps were not up to the level of suck that Verizon likes so they had to add the suck themselves.

Re:Well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16117526)

Haha! DAldredge talking about something other than itself sucking!! That's funny!

Linux? (1)

diablo-d3 (175104) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117299)

So why doesn't Verizon just use Linux or some other OS that works in small constraints? If I can run Linux on my wrt54g (which is just a tiny little MIPS box with 8 megs of ram and 4 megs of flash), then they surely can ditch Microsoft's stuff altogether and use Linux.

Re:Linux? (1)

NullProg (70833) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118531)

So why doesn't Verizon just use Linux or some other OS that works in small constraints?

Verizon hitched its wagon so to speak with Microsoft when they started offering DSL in the NorthEastern USA (Free MSN accounts). Its called kickbacks in the form of joint marketing money. No current Linux company has the matching dollars.

Enjoy,

Re:Linux? (1)

canuck57 (662392) | more than 7 years ago | (#16120049)

No current Linux company has the matching dollars.

But as we are seeing with this event, Linux with MythTV would have cost them a whole lot less, and worked!!! And they would have to pay royalties to dysfunctional companies.

Verizon QoS (1)

ElitistWhiner (79961) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117308)

rolls their own client-side application. At least they have what MICROSOFT engineers think of as *standard* quality client-side software. Pretty clearcut specification failure to omit memory footprint of the client.

NEWS JUST IN! (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16117339)

Software development project just like every other software development project! Microsoft beleived to be involed! Slashdot closes in!

Verizon... fixing?? oh my... (2, Interesting)

towsonu2003 (928663) | more than 7 years ago | (#16117575)

Verizon is _fixing_ something? That is disturbing news, even if they are fixing Microsoft...

[rant]

A couple of weeks ago, I tried to order DSL from Verizon. Well, twice in fact.

My first order? As it turns out, they somehow lost it after I waited for a week for a response from them. So I had to reorder, via phone...

So the agent told me that DSL _was_ available for my area. Nice! I reordered it.

I waited for two weeks. After two weeks, I wrote a complaint letter (about me waiting for two weeks). Lo and behold, I got a phone call next day, from a Verizon machine, telling that my DSL order was cancelled because DSL was not available in my area.

I lived in a so-called 3rd world country for a few months. It took them 2 days to take my DSL order and activate my phone line for DSL...

[/rant]

The idea here? They are fixing Microsoft while their whole system is [beep]. Poor[*] Microsoft... O_o

[*] Not even a sarcastic comment...

Re:Verizon... fixing?? oh my... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16121603)

Be glad it isn't ATT. They came out to "fix" one of my T1s on Monday. They tested it and said it was perfectly fine and an equipment problem on our end. Then they proceeded to fix a minor alarm and unknowingly shut off the lines for every other tenant in the building.

Redmond Rove-fu (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118170)

MS only lets itself look completely inept like this to downplay the accusation of being a domineering monopoly.

If Verizon had hired some headz and gone MythTV, then we could be impressed.

Don't be fooled by the Rove-fu.

Re:Redmond Rove-fu (1)

demmer (623592) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118230)

microsoft has its "own", "complete" iptv solution (for real tv and video on demand and stuff) from streaming servers to set top box software. this is not windows mce and cannot be compared to mythtv.

if you had actually read the linked article before commenting you would have found this (http://www.microsoft.com/tv/IPTVEdition.mspx) link to microsofts product site.

Re:Redmond Rove-fu (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 7 years ago | (#16119637)

Actually, a colleague came into my office with the original WSJ piece, and then I read the Ars link, before this was posted on /.
The tip of the iceberg we see in print is worth accepting as truth.
However, I do trust Redmond to engage in a variety of schemes to strengthen its grip on the market.
Invoking Rove to characterize Redmond's behavior was gratuitous, but I'm thinking that they're maneuvering carefully so that the spectre of the Sherman Anti-Trust Act doesn't come home to roost.

the microsoft way... (2, Interesting)

La Fourmi Nihiliste (906448) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118316)

Microsoft is going at IPTV with the windows attitude: they are so infatuated with themselves that they think they will be the standard.

I had the chance of seeing a test deployment of MS's IPTV "solution" in a testing environment for evaluation and its basically sucks. The system is buggy, server intensive -- one of the engineers who demoed it to me refered to it as a 'Server Per Customer' solution. and in good MS tradition, cool features get dropped from version to version, as they are considered too buggy.
Visually speaking the "solution" isn't really great. Anyone who has a MediaCenter version of XP knows exactly how it looks and works, and skinning the menus, onscreen guide and services isnt possible.
i, for one, would never sign up to an IPTV service using the MS system. not because i hate them, but because i would not want a system that is far from being user-friendly. I would not recommend it to my worst ennemy.

No wonder Verizon is investing efforts to patch the thing: its a complete disaster. And verizon, in the good tradition of the Telco industry, cannot accept such a buggy and yet so costly system. If microsoft thought it could just walk into the IPTV business and dominate, they are wrong. At least this is a reassuring thing: money does not buy everything without effort, good will, and creativity.

once again, as for many other of its endeavors (the name Vista comes to mind) MS sets expectations that it cannot meet. When will people notice that, i keep wondering.

MS should throw less chairs accross offices and concentrate on what they do best...

oh wait... their speciality is buggy, coslty software with inexistant user friendlyness!

ant

How much bloody OS does a settop box need? (1)

FFFish (7567) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118521)

Why in gods' names would this device need a full-fledged OS, much less one with as much crap attached as a Microsoft product?

How could the project designers not spec a more appropriate OS? There are literally *dozens* of alternatives that would make more sense.

Mind, it is Verizon. From all I've read, they typically can't find their arse with both hands and a copy of Grey's Anatomy.

Re:How much bloody OS does a settop box need? (1)

michael_cain (66650) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118993)

Even a rudimentary digital STB needs features for which a simple OS is probably the easiest solution. For example, a hardware abstraction layer, to allow a single version of the application software to run on the dozen different hardware variants of the STB design that the cable company will have deployed. A multitasking executive because the box will run multiple processes: one for the UI, one that monitors data downloads (eg, data for the program guide), one that receives and stores new versions of the UI software, etc. A full-blown OS would be overkill, but a simple one makes it much easier for the application developers.

MS typically gets involved when Verizon and the other subscription TV companies start looking for the STB to provide a much more sophisticated application platform. The new services will require a much greater range of capabilities: a TCP/IP stack, a real file system, much more sophisticated graphics capabilities, memory protection. The last of those is underappreciated, but it's important that the weather application downloaded from the local TV station and the stock ticker app downloaded from the local bank don't mess up each other, or overwrite the compressed database that contains the program guide information.

I personally wouldn't choose MS to provide the OS for my STB; not least because they've been trying to do that job for different companies for several years and have a horrible track record. Nor would I choose to allow 3rd-party apps written in native code into the box; security is easier to address in interpreted languages. When I worked in the industry, I argued that we would be better off paying for a faster processor and more memory so we could have a standardized Java environment for the 3rd-party apps; I didn't win the argument.

They've gotta do something... (1)

JasonJ75 (863975) | more than 7 years ago | (#16118570)

Because the STB software is TERRIBLE. It makes my old buggy/blue screen a week WMC seem like a finely tuned machine. Its a good thing the picture quality is absolutely fantastic because that box is a MESS.

Send this one over to Alex Papadimoulis... (1)

gblues (90260) | more than 7 years ago | (#16119008)

... because this is a world-class WTF.

The problem is that to run well, Microsoft's software needs more memory than Verizon's set top boxes ship with.

So, what happened? Did Verizon just not tell Microsoft how much memory they were shipping with? Did they give MS the spec, then reduce the memory on the production units? Or maybe they pulled a NASA, and gave MS a memory capacity in HD marketing MB (where 1MB=1000*1000) and MS assumed it was in real-world MB (where 1MB=1024x1024).

Nathan

Verizon is no better... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16119399)

Having seen Verizon's internal mission critical apps that they have developed in-house, I can say this: The memory footprint will only increase. And the management will think that is good, because bigger is better. If for a minute they see a loss coming on the project, the will immediately suffle that off onto another business unit. They will then bestow upon themselves bonuses for cutting costs, most likely about %120 of the cost mitigated. Soon after, you will find a new charge on your bill.

No longer (0, Troll)

amavida (898618) | more than 7 years ago | (#16119462)

You no longer have to be a M$ hater, to see them for what they are.

Only the ignorant or paid schill's could continue to ignore the track record of this bloated monopolist.

I laugh with every new revelation of M$'s craptastic products.

Re:No longer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16119476)

You no longer have to be a M$ hater, to see them for what they are.

Very true, but you still have to be an idiot to use a dollar sign in place of an S.

Re:No longer (1)

amavida (898618) | more than 7 years ago | (#16122874)

On the contrary I believe the $ in M$ sums up many peoples deep disgust at the obscene amounts of money this monopolist has accrued.

I'll have the good grace not to call you infantile names mr. anonymous.

Verizon developers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16120084)

I think this is a BS story made up by Verizon to cover the fact that they will quietly disable features in IPTV when replacing it with their own software, just like they do in all of their phones.

Now if Comcast would only dump Microsoft. (1)

netDopey (197020) | more than 7 years ago | (#16121378)

Here in Washington the Microsoft Enhanced software running on the STB is utter garbage. Funny thing about it is that there recently was an update sent out to fix problems of sluggishness and unresponsiveness, and now I'm suffering from daily reboots. The sluggishness and unresponsiveness is still there.

I swear Comcast made a deal with TIVO, please for the love of all that is good switch to TIVO.

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