Cordkillers 60 – Crying Over Buffering

How the housing market is bad news for cable and Hungary shows why cable could boost YouTube viewership.

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CordKillers: Ep. 60 – Crying Over Buffering
Recorded: March 2, 2015
Alex Hanna

Intro Video

Primary Target

Signal Intelligence

Gear Up

  • Surprise: Cable viewers really like YouTube on their set-tops
    Cloud Virtualization provider ActiveVideo used UPC Hungary as a case study for adding YouTube to a cable TV set-top box
    – 200K of 910K subs got it forst. 320K got it in following months
    – 68% tried it.
    – 83% of tryers became repeat users
    – 1 million minutes a day avg. session 45 minutes
    -(UPC boxes stream video only. Cloud handles all YouTube video through ActiveVideo)

Front Lines

Under Surveillance

Dispatches from the Front

Dear Brian & Tom

Just thought I’d share how much I pay here in the UK & talk a bit more about the TV license;

TV License is £145 annually ($223) – but it’s quite nice that all of the BBC channels (TV and Radio) are advert-free. The iPlayer is superb. It’s almost worth it for the kids TV channels alone.. the quality of those programs is really high, and you know the kids are actually learning something most of the time (and aren’t getting bombarded with ads).

BT for fibre broadband; £23 a month (38 Mbps down, 10 up, unlimited data), with an additional £17 a month line rental that includes the phone line.

Freeview HD OTA.. no monthly fee. I use a Humax Freeview HD DVR box I bought years ago.

Total = £52 a month ($80) for TV and unlimited fibre broadband.

Keep up the good work on the show,

Leeds, UK.


I know Brian uses At&t for his internet connection, but I wonder if he was aware of all the “free” stuff bundled in to the Standard (we’ll spy on you) package that make the difference between the plans $66 if you have both TV and Internet or $44 if you only have Internet.


Hey Tom and Brian!

Listening to Spoilerin’ Time 59 while Brain’s talking about how hard it is to see The Walking Dead.

I have a Quick Tip: I don’t have a cable package JUST Time Warner Cable for Internet. I can still use my TWC account to log into to watch the live stream of their channel, even though I don’t pay for the channel. It appears their authorization system doesn’t differentiate between cable packages. So I can watch Better Call Saul and Walking Dead live with no trouble at all.





I think that Better Call Saul is set later than what you thought (late 80’s -early 90’s). In the first episode when he is ordering flowers for his potential clients (right before he runs into the kid on the skateboard), he is reading off his credit card and he says that the expiration is 11/04. So, I would estimate that the show is set sometime between 2000-2004.

Your boss,



Hi, Tom and Brian. In the last few episodes you’ve been asking people how much they pay for internet, and I thought I’d chime in. I’ve been a cord-cutter for 2 years UNTIL about two weeks ago!

Previously: 50mbps for $67 including taxes and fees.
Now: $70 for 105Mbps PLUS cable

I originally contacted Comcast (via support chat) to see how I can get my bill lowered. I have NO other broadband options for my apartment. You know the game. They told me they couldn’t give me a better price unless I was a new customer, so I went to the fabled customer retention. THEY said if I bundle, they could save me money. Great! “What are your bundles?” “Oh, we don’t have one for 50mbps anymore. But for $3 extra we can give you 105Mbps but only if you bundle cable.” What?! While I’m ideologically opposed to that crappy practice, why would I not double my internet speed for $3? I asked them to not bother sending me the cable box and they waived the setup and shipping fees, and tried to send me the box anyway. I told them, “Seriously, I don’t want it. Count me as a metric if you want but I don’t care about cable at all.” They offered to waive the monthly box rental fee if I just took box anyway. Fine. I guess it shows how desperate they are to retain/add cable subscribers in certain markets. Of course, I kept the transcript of the whole thing so there’s no funny business. ON THE BRIGHT SIDE, now it’s much easier to watch National Geographic’s Hacking the System. You should watch it sometime…

Your very pleased boss <>,



Hey guys, love the show. I was pondering on the nature of youtube and convenience. As in introduction: I am a 25 year old, second generation cord-neverer. My parents cut the cord before I was born and I grew up on broadcast and P2P file sharing. I use (in descending order) Netflix, Pluto.TV, Amazon Prime, and Hulu(free).

The fact is, I never really mastered YouTube when I was younger. As such, I do not use at as a media consumption platform. I use it pretty much only for tutorials or archived videos. Now that I am so stuck in the routine of hands off viewing YouTube, frankly, seems as antiquated to me as DVR, brodcast, DVD, or torrents.

So, Brian, Tom, riddle me this, am I crazy in thinking we are a few years away from a world where pirated media, ripped and uploaded to youtube, would be so inconvenient to seek out and watch that you would be as likely to choose to watch it as you would daytime broadcast TV? That content available on YouTube might as well be sitting in a Blockbuster? I promise you this, if SnapChat made a TV and I missed it, I sure as heck wouldn’t go try to find it on YouTube.

Thanks guys,
Anthony in San Antonio



Hey Tom and Brian just wanted to pass along another assignment as one of your bosses and let you know you should give the BBC show Broadchurch a chance. While I say you should do it before the Fox version comes out, they BOTH have David Tennent as lead so makes it interesting enough to watch both. My opinion is it has been a great murder mystery show with perfect character development.

Keep up the great work,
Nick from Austin and cord free for almost 15 years.




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