Cordkillers 134 – Deeply Regret Button (w/ Mulango Akpo-Esambe)

We now know the lifetime of a TiVo, Netflix comes to your hotel, a wireless antenna with fewer wires. With special guest Mulango Akpo-Esambe.

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CordKillers: Ep. 134 – Deeply Regret Button
Recorded:  August 22 2016
Guest: Mulango Akpo-Esambe

Intro Video

Primary Target

  • TiVo is cutting off support for its original DVR in September
    – TiVo will deliver a last download of guide data for its 1999 model TiVos on September 15th. Customers will get a $75 Visa gift card. The boxes will continue to work but will not have any guide data after September 29th. TiVo says there are still 3,200 Series 1 TiVos in active use

Signal Intelligence

  • Netflix is coming to more hotel rooms worldwide
    – Netflix partnering with Enseo (in-room entertainment for hotels)
    – Partnership expanded to any hotel under contract in a country with Netflix
    – Beyond pre-approved brands
    – Netflix app on TV or Netflix button on remote
    – Sign in with Netflix account, no Internet fees
    – Promises to wipe out login at checkout
    – Most-used channels in 19 hotel brands today (Marriott, Hilton La Quinta)
    – Hotels like it as a perk, and frees up wifi for other uses
    – Enseo’s system can also provide marketing messages

Gear Up

  • This wireless antenna may make cord cutting easier
    – WatchAir antenna streams to Smart TV (WebOS, Tizen, Android TV, Vizio), smartphone, tablet (ios, Android), Roku, Apple TV and Fire TV
    – Sends OTA signal over WiFi then to apps
    – Has a TV guide and 5 hours of recording (25 with SD Card)
    – Kickstarter promotion $149
    – Hopes to ship in October for $249

Under Surveillance

Front Lines

  • Here’s TV Networks’ Latest Scheme to Limit ‘Cord-Cutting’
    – Reuters has a story about how more networks are doing what they call “stacking” by making all previous episodes of a series available on demand to cable subscribers. 54% of people in one survey said they would not start watching a show unless they could watch all previous episodes. Comcast will offer full-season stacks of 60% of original scripted series up from 41% two seasons ago. A source told Reuters one network saw a 3-11% rise in ratings after offering stacked shows. 
  • How to see everything you’ve ever watched on Netflix and Amazon
    – Engadget’s Matt Brian has written up instructions for seeing your viewing history on Netflix and Amazon. Netflix history can be found in a section of Your Account called Viewing History. You can delete items to remove their impact on recommendations. Amazon buries it in Your Account under Personalization where you click Improve Your Recommendations and then choose Videos You’ve Watched. You can then rate shows to fine tune recommendations. 
  • Univision buys Gawker Media for $135 million
    – Univision doesn’t just run the top spanish-language channel in the US it also owns The Onion and The Root. And it has provisionally acquired Gawker Media pending the decision of the bankruptcy court. Gawker runs Gizmodo, Lifehacker and io9 among other sites.
  • Amazon brings free episodes of its Original Series to YouTube & Facebook
    – Amazon has begun posting pilot episodes from 10 of its shows on YouTube and Facebook Live. Shows include Transparent, Mozart in the Jungle, Bosch, Red Oaks, and The Man in the High Castle.
  • HDHomeRun’s DVR app is ready for the Xbox One
    – HDHomeRun’s DVR software is a big hit with people looking for a replacement for Windows Media Center. It can now help folks who wish their Xbox could act as a DVR. You’ll still need HDHomeRun on a PC, Android TV box or NAS, but there is now an app for HDHomeRun on the Xbox One. 

Dispatches from the Front
Hi Tom and Brian

Take a listen / look at this:

It’s 80 min of TV themes performed by the Danish public service station’s classical band.

There is some Danish talking in between, but most series covered are ones I’ve heard you talk about on the show.

Maybe something for the cold open? Or as a link to the listeners.

BTW – this is why I’m happy that we in sunny Denmark have the license fee that everybody with a TV, radio or access to the internet has to pay!

Thanks for always great shows!
Your boss,



Hi guys.

I’ve now watched Jon-Claude Van Johnson and The Tick.I will watch I love Dick after work tonight.

My frustration with these pilots is not the content or format.I just don’t recall Amazon ever asking in there survey on what are your favorite shows ever? Then ask why these pilots are greater or worse then your favorite shows.

It just seems this kind of questioning sets these pilots up for failure as each one I’ve seen is slightly worse then say Battlestar Galactica. But it’s really unfair compairing a 30 minute pilot to a 4.5 season show for example.

I’m hoping somebody can reply and let me know if Amazon has asked this kind of question before in there pilot survey?

Long time Patreon Boss:
David from Fond Du Lac,Wisconsin asking



I was talking with a girl who works at Hulu.
She said they get to see the first preview of what they are doing for the Hulu Streaming Channel today.
She said that currently she knows it will have an online DVR, but doesn’t have the details yet as to if it will be any restrictions on what can be recorded or if time limits or such. But if it isn’t all easily integrated it would seem a non starter.

She was pretty open about this as there is so many press leaks…but just in case don’t mention my name if you say anything on the air. Not sure if she was speaking out of turn. 



Tom and Brian,

I am constantly scouring the net to find interesting tidbits on cord cutting and specifically OTT live streaming services. To compare the channels available I put the linked spreadsheet together. It needs a little more refining (cannot make out what networks some of SFN’s Faith based offerings are) but your viewers may find it useful. The link is public.

This is strictly a channel availability chart not a comparison of services

PlayStation Vue is still the best by nearly every metric I care about except mobility and the name (and lack of a desktop app). It is ridiculous they launched nationally with PlayStation in the name. Nearly everyone I speak too about it says “I might try it but I don’t have a PlayStation”. How about Sony Vue or just Vue? Or Sony Live Stream (SLS for short)? Or Sony Dream Stream? Anything without PlayStation in the name. Plus the integration into the PlayStation website makes it more confusing to the average user.

Very Respectfully,



Tom and Brian,
Comcast upped my rate again so it was time to go for the chicken challenge again. Long story short, I was successful but not in the way I imagined.
I started out calling Comcast and had no luck getting my deal back to what it was before. So, I did what any reasonable person would do in 2016… complain on Twitter about my bill going up. Imagine my surprise when the Comcast Cares account at replied me and asked I follow them so we could exchange DMs. Using an exchange of DMs I was able to get back to my previous deal and lock it in for 2 years. That included free HBO for another 2 years and then to top it off they added 2 years of Showtime for free as well.
Comcast justifiably gets a bad rap in regards to customer service at times, but their social media team was fantastic to work with. I just wanted to share another path for all your listeners to take to try and get a better deal via the Chicken Challenge. Twitter, who would have thought that would work so well?





When I decided to cut the cord, I called Cox cable and told them I was cancelling in favor of HBOGo and Hulu. They made me a deal in which I pay for a “starter pack” cable plus HBO and Starz, at $12/month, which made it cheaper for me to keep it than to have HBO alone.

The end result is that I never bothered to connect my cable box – by using mobile apps to stream the network shows (using my cable login), I get all of the current shows offered by Hulu and was able to cancel that as well.

Definitely worth the phone call. 


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