Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

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Beerman
Posts: 1519
Joined: Thu May 21, 2015 7:05 pm

Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by Beerman »

Knowing cable cards are all but dead, who is willing to fork out money for Prime anymore? I was more than willing to but I doubt I will now. And Silicon knows a lot more than I do about the future of cable cards.
I started testing cable cards for Microsoft in 2006. They even sent me a brand new Dell which they allowed me to keep after testing. We were given hardware that look like a child put together. It was an open, metal box and I was totally new and extremely ignorant of anything cable card. That's obviously what they were looking for.....not programmers but real users. Since then, I've had either their OCUR device and then, Prime and never looked back. Much has changed since then and 2020 sucks supremely so why not just re-invent everything? I'm ok with it and guess I'll likely end up with the streaming side of things when my 2 Primes die or my cable company tells me they are stopping me from using them. Nothing lasts forever!

topdavis
Posts: 37
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2010 3:21 pm

Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by topdavis »

I think cable companies will have to still support, but not provide new, cable cards for a little while longer anyway. Their cable boxes have the same cable cards in them that we use for the existing Primes. It would be a logistical ans support nightmare for them to stop supporting their own boxes and replacing them with something else. For the time being I'll try to get an old HDHR3 on ebay and get another cable card and hope they let me have an additional one...

mcewinter
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Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by mcewinter »

NedS wrote:
Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:39 pm
You guys have no idea how much it's killing us that we can't tell all of you the whole story. As long as there's any chance of the PRIME 6 still being released, we're going to play it safe and not say anything publicly that might hurt those chances.
The demand for a 6-tuner device goes back to 2008. Is that where the whole story begins?

Correction: Windows 7 hit the market October 22, 2009.

I imagine demand and pay-off is significantly lower in September of 2020, especially with the advent of this current announcement.

JSylvia007
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Sep 11, 2020 10:22 am

Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by JSylvia007 »

Looks like the curtain has fallen for CableCARD...

https://zatznotfunny.com/2020-09/cablecard-is-dead/

NedS
Silicondust
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Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by NedS »

mcewinter wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 9:05 am
The demand for a 6-tuner device goes back to 2008. Is that where the whole story begins?

Correction: Windows 7 hit the market October 22, 2009.

I imagine demand and pay-off is significantly lower in September of 2020, especially with the advent of this current announcement.
The story goes back to when we knew we could no longer manufacture the original PRIME, due to one of the key components no longer being made. A "PRIME4" was in development and was almost sent off to certification, but the same thing happened again there with a key component, and we had to start over. Obviously, this time we had to do some extra work to make sure we could secure a source components in this design, to avoid another design restart. Each time various things are evaluated, and the pressure to make a better product builds, as well as the company growing and being able to build better hardware over time, and thus we shot for a PRIME6.

The cable industry has made sure that every step of the process, even finding necessary components, is as hard as possible. They have fought hard to kill CableCARD, which was already designed to be a difficult process and to discourage third party hardware.

mcewinter
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Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by mcewinter »

NedS wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 1:38 pm
mcewinter wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 9:05 am
The demand for a 6-tuner device goes back to 2008. Is that where the whole story begins?

Correction: Windows 7 hit the market October 22, 2009.

I imagine demand and pay-off is significantly lower in September of 2020, especially with the advent of this current announcement.
The story goes back to when we knew we could no longer manufacture the original PRIME, due to one of the key components no longer being made. A "PRIME4" was in development and was almost sent off to certification, but the same thing happened again there with a key component, and we had to start over. Obviously, this time we had to do some extra work to make sure we could secure a source components in this design, to avoid another design restart. Each time various things are evaluated, and the pressure to make a better product builds, as well as the company growing and being able to build better hardware over time, and thus we shot for a PRIME6.

The cable industry has made sure that every step of the process, even finding necessary components, is as hard as possible. They have fought hard to kill CableCARD, which was already designed to be a difficult process and to discourage third party hardware.
The Prime3 is/was a great product in terms of performance and reliability. 3 tuners was always an odd number (no pun intended) and seemed like a logical ambition to offer a 6 tuner device soon thereafter, much like another company did. They started with a 4 tuner offering then immediately worked up to maxing out the capabilities of the M-Card. Maybe the fact that they didn't succeed as a business says something but the 3 tuner device should have merely been a stepping stone to a higher offering. I was always a little baffled by the lack of advancement on that front, especially with menu of OTA products that have been developed. Now here we are staring at the amount of market share you're about to lose as either the existing Primes fail or as providers discontinue CableCards.

charles
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Nov 13, 2009 12:33 pm

Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by charles »

charles wrote:
Sun Aug 16, 2020 11:26 pm
I bet working with Cablelabs and other industry groups obstructionist to open standards and competition, not to mention the FCC, is a real chore. Admitting that would be burning bridges though :P
;)

NedS
Silicondust
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Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by NedS »

mcewinter wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 2:12 pm
NedS wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 1:38 pm
mcewinter wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 9:05 am
The demand for a 6-tuner device goes back to 2008. Is that where the whole story begins?

Correction: Windows 7 hit the market October 22, 2009.

I imagine demand and pay-off is significantly lower in September of 2020, especially with the advent of this current announcement.
The story goes back to when we knew we could no longer manufacture the original PRIME, due to one of the key components no longer being made. A "PRIME4" was in development and was almost sent off to certification, but the same thing happened again there with a key component, and we had to start over. Obviously, this time we had to do some extra work to make sure we could secure a source components in this design, to avoid another design restart. Each time various things are evaluated, and the pressure to make a better product builds, as well as the company growing and being able to build better hardware over time, and thus we shot for a PRIME6.

The cable industry has made sure that every step of the process, even finding necessary components, is as hard as possible. They have fought hard to kill CableCARD, which was already designed to be a difficult process and to discourage third party hardware.
The Prime3 is/was a great product in terms of performance and reliability. 3 tuners was always an odd number (no pun intended) and seemed like a logical ambition to offer a 6 tuner device soon thereafter, much like another company did. They started with a 4 tuner offering then immediately worked up to maxing out the capabilities of the M-Card. Maybe the fact that they didn't succeed as a business says something but the 3 tuner device should have merely been a stepping stone to a higher offering. I was always a little baffled by the lack of advancement on that front, especially with menu of OTA products that have been developed. Now here we are staring at the amount of market share you're about to lose as either the existing Primes fail or as providers discontinue CableCards.
You're not hearing me. There were technical and economic reasons for the original PRIME having only three tuners. It was the best we could do for that first model in terms of being a good business decision. That other company that maxed out the CableCARD and allowed for six tuners, they had a lot more money and they had secured agreements with smaller cable providers to provide cable boxes, meaning it was much easier and safer for them to do so. We are not them and we do not have their massive resources.

There's nothing to be baffled about. OTA is drastically easier to develop for than CableCARD (which is not to understate the challenges with OTA products), has a bigger customer base, is international (CableCARD is US-only, and while the actual tuner is different for ATSC and DVB-T, most of the product is the same), and isn't full of arbitrary business-killing fees and red tape. There is no industry going around trying to kill third party OTA receivers.

kc4uai
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Sep 11, 2020 3:59 pm

Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by kc4uai »

NedS wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 1:38 pm
mcewinter wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 9:05 am
The demand for a 6-tuner device goes back to 2008. Is that where the whole story begins?

Correction: Windows 7 hit the market October 22, 2009.

I imagine demand and pay-off is significantly lower in September of 2020, especially with the advent of this current announcement.
The story goes back to when we knew we could no longer manufacture the original PRIME, due to one of the key components no longer being made. A "PRIME4" was in development and was almost sent off to certification, but the same thing happened again there with a key component, and we had to start over. Obviously, this time we had to do some extra work to make sure we could secure a source components in this design, to avoid another design restart. Each time various things are evaluated, and the pressure to make a better product builds, as well as the company growing and being able to build better hardware over time, and thus we shot for a PRIME6.

The cable industry has made sure that every step of the process, even finding necessary components, is as hard as possible. They have fought hard to kill CableCARD, which was already designed to be a difficult process and to discourage third party hardware.
So does manufacturing a CableCARD Tuner actually make any sense anymore? I'm seeing The Prime 3 on eBay going for about $300 each as used. I see that the product for Prime 6 was targeted at a $250 price point. However, with the move to cut the cord from the cable companies really hurting the possible market, can you possibly sell enough tuners to turn a reasonable profit? Seems to me that the economics of this is rapidly going to fade away if this isn't done pretty quickly.

Personally, I'd really like to get one of the new 6 channel tuners and I'd pay up to $300 for it.

Any insights into the economics of this?

Thanks!

NedS
Silicondust
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Joined: Mon Dec 10, 2018 12:38 pm

Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by NedS »

kc4uai wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 4:26 pm
So does manufacturing a CableCARD Tuner actually make any sense anymore?
I don't really know the details of that kind of stuff, but I know this is the question that is being asked internally, with this recent FCC news. We don't know the answer yet. A lot of different things need to be weighted (CableCARD won't disappear over night, we have a fairly good idea of demand, etc), but considering all of the development already invested into the product, we would really like to bring the product to light, if at all possible.

mcewinter
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Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by mcewinter »

NedS wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 3:23 pm
mcewinter wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 2:12 pm
NedS wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 1:38 pm


The story goes back to when we knew we could no longer manufacture the original PRIME, due to one of the key components no longer being made. A "PRIME4" was in development and was almost sent off to certification, but the same thing happened again there with a key component, and we had to start over. Obviously, this time we had to do some extra work to make sure we could secure a source components in this design, to avoid another design restart. Each time various things are evaluated, and the pressure to make a better product builds, as well as the company growing and being able to build better hardware over time, and thus we shot for a PRIME6.

The cable industry has made sure that every step of the process, even finding necessary components, is as hard as possible. They have fought hard to kill CableCARD, which was already designed to be a difficult process and to discourage third party hardware.
The Prime3 is/was a great product in terms of performance and reliability. 3 tuners was always an odd number (no pun intended) and seemed like a logical ambition to offer a 6 tuner device soon thereafter, much like another company did. They started with a 4 tuner offering then immediately worked up to maxing out the capabilities of the M-Card. Maybe the fact that they didn't succeed as a business says something but the 3 tuner device should have merely been a stepping stone to a higher offering. I was always a little baffled by the lack of advancement on that front, especially with menu of OTA products that have been developed. Now here we are staring at the amount of market share you're about to lose as either the existing Primes fail or as providers discontinue CableCards.
You're not hearing me. There were technical and economic reasons for the original PRIME having only three tuners. It was the best we could do for that first model in terms of being a good business decision. That other company that maxed out the CableCARD and allowed for six tuners, they had a lot more money and they had secured agreements with smaller cable providers to provide cable boxes, meaning it was much easier and safer for them to do so. We are not them and we do not have their massive resources.

There's nothing to be baffled about. OTA is drastically easier to develop for than CableCARD (which is not to understate the challenges with OTA products), has a bigger customer base, is international (CableCARD is US-only, and while the actual tuner is different for ATSC and DVB-T, most of the product is the same), and isn't full of arbitrary business-killing fees and red tape. There is no industry going around trying to kill third party OTA receivers.
I'm hearing you, I actually knew all of that for the most part so I know I sound ignorant. My apologies. I wasn't aware that those guys had that kind of money and resources. Their product appeared to have lived and died with WMC but I know the company had some other problems. While I'm somewhat aware that it's difficult to produce a product with that amount of prerequisites, I didn't fully appreciate how much friction there is in the supply chain. So please, pardon my frustration. Should Comcast decide to omit CableCARD as an option, I'm not going to reward them by paying them more money for my TV service.

I simply cannot get CBS OTA in my area and some other channels are unreliable. Anything outside of my current setup is going to be paradigm shift in the way that I consume TV. My Prime was purchased at or around time of release and has held up well. Fingers crossed.

kc4uai
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Sep 11, 2020 3:59 pm

Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by kc4uai »

NedS wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 6:22 pm
kc4uai wrote:
Fri Sep 11, 2020 4:26 pm
So does manufacturing a CableCARD Tuner actually make any sense anymore?
considering all of the development already invested into the product, we would really like to bring the product to light, if at all possible.
I'm sure you would... But as others have pointed out, with the FCC's change in rules in Sept 2020, the window for being able to do that may have already closed. I just had a serious problem with my Cable provider trying to get an additional cable card issued on my account. Once cable providers stop issuing new cable cards, there won't be any market for a cable card tuner, and this company (and another fairly well-known builder of consumer products that use Cable Cards) will have nobody to sell to because their product won't operate anymore. Sure the cable companies won't stop authorizing existing cable cards anytime soon, so my two tuners will work for a couple of years, but we are clearly on the decline if it's true about what the FCC did to the rules.

My point is unless it's in the final stages of certification, HD Homerun Prime 6 is pretty much going to be a dead horse. I sure hope it shows up in retail stores soon, but unless it's like tomorrow, the market is pretty much gone... Good luck!

ctviggen
Posts: 179
Joined: Sun Dec 12, 2010 5:29 am

Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by ctviggen »

If cable cards still work for a few years, I'd get a Prime. I like the system I have and I HATE cable boxes.

comet48
Posts: 19
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2018 7:09 pm

Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by comet48 »

I use Plex - it supports multiple units. I have two Primes installed, giving me 6 tuner support. The only downside is that I have to pay for two cable cards instead of one. An additional $10 per month.

ctviggen
Posts: 179
Joined: Sun Dec 12, 2010 5:29 am

Re: Is the PRIME 6 soon to be released?

Post by ctviggen »

comet48 wrote:
Sun Sep 13, 2020 9:59 am
I use Plex - it supports multiple units. I have two Primes installed, giving me 6 tuner support. The only downside is that I have to pay for two cable cards instead of one. An additional $10 per month.
I was thinking of buying another HD Homerun Prime, though they seem to be expensive on Ebay. This is what I'd do, too.

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