Cordkillers 71 – Decidedly Less Juicy

Is Hulu or CBS the future of cord-cutting apps? Has TiVo cracked the perfect bundle?

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CordKillers: Ep. 71 – Decidedly Less Juicy
Recorded: May 18, 2015
Guest: None

Intro Video 

Primary Target

Signal Intelligence

Gear Up

  • Plex comes to TiVo
    – Oh TiVo. You keep being so close to a really great cordcutting device.
    – TiVo Roamio getting Plex app 6/8
    – Opera-based version of smart TV apps. 720p only
    – Won’t integrate with universal search
  • TiVo wants to become the legal version of Aereo
    – Multichannel says TiVo plans to use Aereo trademark and customer lists in a legal version of the service
    – TiVo CEO Tom Rogers wants to offer low-cost bundles of channels and streaming services
    – “The answer is pretty clear — it’s kind of the Aereo model, done legally and better.”
    – Event planned in San Jose for July to unveil new Aereo. 

    – Essentially Rogers says that Cable should bundle TiVos with OTA and broadband services in with their Internet.

Front Lines

Under Surveillance

Dispatches from the Front

PLEASE, for the love of everything that is good in the heart of a Mother of Dragons… quit with emails and conversations about spoilers.

The Geeky Brit
Ian, Ontario, Canada.




Regards WMC demise.

I too am disappointed with Windows 10 not continuing WMC. You mention apps like plex and Kodi. Yes, I use plex myself… but what I will miss most from WMC is the OTA DVR functionality. As of now, I have yet to find ANY other DVR software as easy to setup and use as Media Center.

Since there isn’t really any hope for this, or worth arguing ALL my points, I have a question?

What is the best software available to use PC with OTA tuners to record broadcasts? Preferably something that can handle multiple tuners and has a reliable guide to schedule series… oh and it has to actually RECOGNIZE the TV tuner without extensive manual setup… that was the key of WMC and what angers me most about Microsoft’s decision.

Thanks for the show.

David C. St. Louis, MO

Go Cards!!

Kodi has OTA DVR functionality



Cordkillers. Love the show. I was one of the lucky ones to get on the deal for the Lifetime TiVo OTA for $299. Got it last week, and I am loving it. I haven’t had a DVR since I went OTA and been using Hulu as my cloud DVR per say. Now w/ TiVo OnePass, I see myself canceling Hulu (once I catch up on some shows). I can keep up w/ the motto and record what I want so I can watch what I want, when I want (and now CBS!). Cutting another monthly bill is awesome.





Hello Everyone,

I have to say I love the prospect of Apple TV. I really loved the speculation where the first month for every app is free and then using that information to tailor a package to you.

The fact of the matter is though I don’t like Apple and mostly likely wouldn’t get an Apple TV. What I really love if the potential for the Roku TV’s. You guys have made comments before about a TV not keeping up with the Software which is a downside to Smart TV’s. If I was going to trust anyone to buck the curve on that it would be Roku. I have had my Roku 1 longer then I’ve had 3 of my TV’s so when it comes to Software keeping up with Hardware Roku I trust. The bonus of that is if after 5 year the hardware isn’t keeping up with the tech, it’s $30 for a stick and $69 for a Roku 2 right now, that is not bad in my opinion.

Thanks for your Time,
Nicky Marson




Hey guys,

I wanted to add a little bit to your Apple TV predictions. In our house we primarily use Roku boxes simply due to the availability of ALL THE CONTENT. On what other device or platform can you get Amazon Video and Google Play video on the same big screen enabled device? This is what I want on a new Apple TV – apps directly from the content providers – and if the rumor is true about being announced at WWDC I’m hopeful that this might come true.

Here’s my prediction – at WWDC they will announce an Apple TV SDK and a beta that runs on current Apple TVs. This gives developers time to write and test apps prior to any new hardware. Then at this year’s iPhone event the new box is announced. This would allow them to have a fully stocked Apple TV App Store prior to launch like they did with the watch. With the technologies that came with iOS 8 and the watch the foundation is in place for building Apple TV apps as app extensions.

I can’t wait!

John in rainy Billings, MT




Hello Tom and Brian! You were discussing CBS All Access this week and Brian described it as meeting the “completeness” vector. But I wonder if you’ve actually used it?

My wife and I did a trial week to try it out and catch up on some shows we watch on CBS. But when she went to watch Big Bang Theory, it was missing several episodes – at that point, it had only the three most recent plus the first four of the season, but not the ones in between. We checked another show she watches, Criminal Minds, and found a similar result – only the last five episodes, same as is freely available on their website. They also still had the most ads of any streaming service I use – and that behind the paywall!

While it is true that other shows did have the complete current season, it was very hit-or-miss. We wound up cancelling the service because CBS “All” Access did not, in fact, give us access to all of the current season’s programming. For the same basic price as Hulu Plus or Netflix, I would expect that at the very least. Their back catalog is pretty readily available elsewhere too – for instance, I can watch any episode of Star Trek ever on Netflix. For my money, they need to worry less about the back catalog and worry more about actually providing complete current seasons.

Love the show – you guys helped me figure out what I needed to do to cut the cord, and I’m pleased to say we’re one year cable-free and don’t miss it! Thanks!

Andrew L


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It’s Spoilerin’ Time Episode 70

Movie Draft Update, Silicon Valley (Season 2), Game of Thrones (505), Daredevil (113), The Shield (509)

00:51 – Movie Draft Update

05:21 – Silicon Valley (Season 2)

09:25 – Game of Thrones (505)

19:02 – Daredevil (113)

26:43 – The Shield (509)

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Cordkillers 70 – Talk Good Like Shwood

Showtime’s ready for its own HBO Now, Broadcast networks become optional and what Apple should do to keep the Apple TV relevant?

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CordKillers: Ep. Talk Good Like Shwood
Recorded: May 11, 2015
Guest: Justin Robert Young

Intro Video 

Primary Target

  • Showtime over the Net
    CBS CEO Les Moonves said Internet-delivered version of Showtime rolling out “in the coming months”
    – Moonves said HBO Now proving the opportunity to go over-the-top
    – “very encouraged” by $6 a month CBS all access. Whole country should get it by end of year.
    – COO Joe Ianniello: “underscores our value in retrans and reverse comp negotiations” In other words, it means we can      up our fees to affiliates and cablecos.
    Couple ways we can go here:
    -1.) Will this creep to non-premium channels like AMC and FX? Will this be the true way to a la carte?
    -2.) Will other broadcasters follow suit in order to gain leverage in fee negotiations?

Signal Intelligence

  • Sling TV may add broadcast networks but won’t force you to buy them 
    Sling TV CEO Roger Lynch: “a key decision from the beginning” to omit broadcast content from base package
    – ‘target market’ gets it from Hulu or OTA
    – “You’ll see us launch broadcast networks in a tier,”
    -Also “It’s not our vision that Sling TV will be everything that everyone will want.”

    Sling in my experience is definitely about watching live not on demand. HBO and AMC not very valuable there. ESPN and HGTV definitely are.
    – If Sling adds broadcast it will be a complex series of negotiations with local broadcasters.
    – Will it be able to do what Aereo couldn’t afford to?

Gear Up

Front Lines

Under Surveillance

Dispatches from the Front

Just finished up a big survey of cord cutters and the habits of password sharing, thought you guys might enjoy the data:
The 10 cent version:
Younger age equals a higher likelihood of sharing passwords. Older age results in a healthy fear that these services are going to put an end to all this freeloading sooner rather than later. HBO Go the largest % of “borrowed” streaming services. Let me know if you’ve got any questions / need any more info about the data, hope you enjoy!




I’ve listened to every episode of cordkillers. In spite of Brian, I enjoy the show very much. I understand spoilers are going to occur. What I have issue with, is when people enjoy spoiling things when it’s unnecessary. Episode 67, Tom was describing the Star Wars trailer without naming Han and Chewy when Brian interrupted, mocking Tom for doing so and more than happy to provide the spoiler.
Recently, Brian thought it would be funny to watch Game of Thrones on HBO GO, skip to the end and then tweet the ending. DOUCHEBAG.
I get that Brian doesn’t understand my point of view. What I don’t understand, is why would you knowingly piss off a segment of your listeners.





Hi guys,
In regards to the TiVo OTA story, last fall we purchased an OTA for my snowbird parents to use as a second DVR so they wouldn’t have to lug their existing TiVo across the country twice a year. Ok it was also so I could avoid the yearly, “how do I hook this thing up” call. Unfortunately, I didn’t do my research and was surprised to find that, unlike every other TiVo I’ve purchased over the last ten years; I couldn’t get a lifetime plan for it.
Not only did I have to pay monthly, I had to commit to 12 months. Not the best option for a device that will be unplugged 6 months of the year. After much back and forth with TiVo, they refused to budge and the cheapest option they would “give” me was to pay monthly for 18 months, cancel for 6 months and repeat.
I had finally caved and was about to sign the contract and hook up the OTA on Saturday when this deal came out of nowhere. So I reached out to TiVo one last time. Of course no such luck for me, I have to buy another OTA that has lifetime I can’t put lifetime on the unactivated OTA I already bought! Crazy but it was still a lot cheaper than what I would have done. Luckily I was able to get the deal even though it did come and go for me as well.
Anyway, long story longer, does anyone want a new unused OTA sans lifetime service?

Your penny pinching boss,
Dan in Rochester


I have been an avid user of Windows media center DVR to record with Cablecard for years. With the software not being part of Windows 10, I was very disappointed. I have yet to find anything and then today I found this on kickstarter. . This is going to be a game changer for me. I already use HDHomeRun prime. This should be amazing. I thought this is something you should share with your audience.




Hi Brian, Tom, and guest,

A huge potential problem exists for those who rely on WMC for their DVR on some cable providers. WMC is currently the only software approved by CableLabs to play Copy-Once content (which is DRM’d video that can only be played on the device that recorded it or a WMC extender like the Xbox 360). All other software currently available (various Kodi backends, NextPVR, etc.) is only able to play/record Copy Freely material. Generally this isn’t a major problem as Comcast and Verizon flag most content as Copy Freely and only tag HBO/Starz/Showtime and the other premium cable channels as Copy Once. Nevertheless, some providers tag everything as Copy Once and therefore some users of WMC will eventually be forced to move away from an HTPC as an option to receive cable TV on their computer.

Not sure if it was mentioned on the show either but SiliconDust has started a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds to develop their own DVR software. It appears that it will be a subscription-based program for $30/year, but the UI looks promising and it states that it should be able to play copy-once material.

Geoff in Maryland



Hey guys, last week Brian and Justin declared the summer blockbuster dead because Avengers 2 only had the 2nd biggest opening weekend in movie history. I really don’t understand this idea. As I write this, Avengers 2 has already made 3 times its budget. Furious 7 has profited well over a BILLION dollars, more than the budgets of all the movies in the series combined.

My point is, they can afford an an occasional flop (like Avengers 2) and still profit billions of dollars every summer. When you look at the worldwide grosses, its hard to find a high budget movie that didn’t make back its budget. In 2014, Robocop and Hercules over doubled their money. 300 Rise of an Empire tripled. Godzilla and Ninja Turtles nearly quadrupled. None of these movies were considered huge box office hits, but all were very financially successful. The ONLY high budget summer movie in the past 3 years I could find that didn’t make its money back was RIPD. It lost 52 million. Good thing Universal profited about 600 million off of Fast & Furious 6 that same summer! I think they’ll keep cranking out the summer blockbusters for some time to come.

If I’m missing something, please explain. Maybe there’s something I’m not seeing or maybe I totally misunderstood what you guys meant. Either way, would love to hear.

Thanks guys, I love the show and am proud to be supporting it!
Andy in Taylor, Tx

P.S. Brian: standing invitation for Louie Mueller BBQ in Taylor any day this summer!


re: Prisoner 42




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  5. Night Attack: $13,942,258
  6. DTNS: $0

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Cordkillers 69 – I Can Live with This Thorn

Will Hulu and YouTube capture your eyeballs with their new hit shows? Will Microsoft regret killing Windows Media Center?

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CordKillers: Ep. 69 – I Can Live with This Thorn
Recorded: May 4 2015
Guest: Veronica Belmont

Primary Target

Signal Intelligence

Gear Up

Front Lines

Under Surveillance

Dispatches from the Front

Hi Tom and Brian,

Hope all is well!

Wanted to throw in my two cents on your discussion on Nielsen. While Nielsen has branched out to cover various forms of digital and non-TV media, their bread and butter is still heavily fixed on the television medium. As far as I’ve seen and experienced, comScore remains the preferred service for digital advertisers. That being said, I wouldn’t go all conspiratorial on them – to Tom’s point, it’s more likely they’re coming from the lens of TV, though it’s also easy to spin the news any way you want.





Hi guys
I know you talked about it but Periscope could be a real game changer. I am not a big boxing fan but with all the hype I peeked in on the big fight Saturday. It worked pretty well. How long do you think before they shut this down? Can they? Just looking through the app it does have a lot of possibility besides illegally streaming stuff.
You guys rock
Ken F




Thanks to y’all, I have officially cut the cord this week. Just wanted to show my love.

Thanks guys,





I have a pick, that is a little time sensitive. It is a Kickstarter campaing for Sideclick. It is a secondary remote that clicks on to your Roku, Apple TV, or Amazon Fire devices. It allows you to control basic functions like power and volume for your TV/receiver. Hopefully a cheaper way to get down to 1 remote.

It goes until May 21st. I pledged, and hope others do as well, seems like a cool little device.




Hey guys,
I can’t tell you how refreshing it is to listen to your show since I’m watching GOT on Sunday’s but, even better, as you recap Daredevil. For the first time ever, I’m ahead of you and love to hear you wonder what’s coming next. And maybe for next weeks you can put on your cotton conjecture hats and theorize on the impacts of Daredevil season 2 on the other Marvel/Netflix shows. Will expectations be higher or was Daredevil the most popular of the crowd so the others will fly under the radar?




So I was excited to get the first survey in the mail which I completed (and got my crisp $1 bills) . The first survey, if I remember correctly, did mention shows you could watch online and asked about watching habits.

I was more excited when we received a Nielsen survey packet in the mail (my wife was not excited but then I flaunted the crisp $5 bills in this envelope) but later realized, as a cord cutter, there was zero information I could fill out on this survey. They even have VCR references in the packet. Turns out there is no where on the survey to add shows that you watch online and they only want cable, satellite, or OTA programs. I just thought this was interesting and trying to find the best way to return my survey. Maybe filling it out with only online shows (House of Cards, Kimmy Schmidt) and saying when I want on whatever device I was bitches!

Kyle from Jacksonville


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Cordkillers 68 – Schrodinger’s Cords

The war of numbers continues, while the war of cord-cutter packages rises and it all means we win more awesome shows.

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CordKillers: Ep. 68 – Schrodinger’s Cords
Recorded: April 27, 2015
Guest: Eklund

Intro Video 

Primary Target

  • Nielsen: Cord cutting’s no big deal
  • Streaming overtakes Live TV
  • Netflix Is 6% of TV Business, 43% of Ratings Decline
    Nielsen data released Thursday.
    – 93% of households with cable, broadband and SVOD will drop BB or SVOD before cable.
    – Young people cancel cable often because of moving

    -Deloitte study – streaming has surpassed live TV
    – 56% stream movies 53% stream TV 45% watch TV programs live
    – 14-25 72% streaming video among most valuable service 58% pay TV

    US Analyst Michael Nathanson of MoffettNathanson
    – Netflix now makes up 6% of total TV viewing
    – Nathanson figures that Netflix accounts for 43 percent of the ratings decline the networks experienced last quarter.

Signal Intelligence

Gear Up

Front Lines

Under Surveillance

Dispatches from the Front

Hey guys,

Coming from a broadcast TV background I found your discussion on periscope last week very interesting. I work in Sports broadcasting and as a rights holder we own the rights to any video shot in the venue. We often use spectators footage from instagram, we don’t need to ask permission because we already own the rights.

If periscope gets big enough they will have no choice but to setup a content management system to block copyright infringement. I think Twitter is being very naive saying that they have a take down procedure. That sounds like a law suit waiting to happening, especially when other online video providers have active system’s to pull content ie YouTube and even Twich.

Aso I would have thought bars would have paid for commercial access to the cable company so if HBO is part of the package I don’t see what the issue is. Here in Australia how much a bar pays for access to subscription TV is tied directly to how much turnover the bar has. It ends up for a larger venue as several thousand dollars a month.

HBO is probably caring more about piracy because they now sell a streaming service. Previously you would need a cable subscription to view HBO. People downloading HBO show probably fall into the category of people who don’t have cable, HBO would want to convert those people into streaming customers. People generally stop pirating because its easier to pay, seems like its good business sense to make pirating as difficult as possible.

Love the show,
– Hosko the sports director



I’m a time warner business class rep. In regards to the HBO story, bars ar actually requires to buy a bar/restaurant package, and any other type of service is actually against some city ordinances. PPV, AND SPECIALY Broadcasrs are billed on a per head estimate or fire capacity rating for the facility. This discourages establishments from just paying the residential price and just raking in a massive profit without the actual content creator relieving their supposed due. Hotels have a hospitality package in which we sell what’s called a hospitality insert package, which why they provide HBO, and other channels within their lineups. In those instances they pay a flat rate per TV set., and it’s typically more than the consumer cost, because it’s considered public display. Thought I’d give you a little insight.

– Anonymous



Hey Shwood and Tom,

I’m hoping that you guys can shed some light on how us Cord Killers can stream the big fight this weekend legally.
My current setup is Sling TV + Plex on my Fire TV and HTPC. Additionally, I have a PS4. Is there a way I can watch the fight?
Boxing, take my money!

Your boss,
– Nick



Hey Tom & Brian,

I want to first say thank you for splitting out It’s Spoilerin’ Time into a separate news feed. I often go back & watch those episodes to hear your opinions after I’ve caught up on the shows.

However this week I was disappointed to find the Movie Draft Update being covered only in the Spoilerin’ Time episode. I really liked this being part of the main show for the Winter Movie Draft, and would have completely missed it altogether if I hadn’t noticed the rundown for this week’s Spoilern’ Time episode.

Any chance of seeing the Movie Draft Update making its way back into the main show? As you’re boss, I’d really appreciate it!

As always, keep up the great work!

– Benjamin



Just saw the most recent Cord Killers and have some clarification to offer. You said that PlayOn is $10 a month after an intro period. [[CNET said $10 for 3 months — think Tom read it wrong]] PlayOn and PlayLater (basically internet DVR that records to your PC hard drive) together are normally actually only $40/year but here’s the BIG thing: They are on sale for $50 (OK, $49.99 but don’t you HATE that?!) for lifetime use right now, only $90 when not on sale. A onetime expense and done. …The sole negatives are that PlayLater records in real time, so if you are getting an hour-long show, it takes an hour, and closed captions are painful and pretty much a loss. For one example, an unscrupulous person could record HuluPlus shows and then play them back with the ability to FF thru commercials…
They are great, almost essential tools for a cordcutter.



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