Time Warner's New DVR Software Is So Horrible That Lincoln, NE Has To Hold A Public Hearing

How bad is DVR software that a city has to hold a public hearing to determine what is to be done about it? Reader Nick writes in:

We are a (maybe the only one?) testing area for Time Warner Cable. They have put a new DVR menu on my household’s cable box and we all agree it is terrible. It was definitely a step down for TWC. Now a local committee is doing something about it!

The local committee is none other than the Lincoln City Council, who are outraged at the awful DVR software. From the Lincoln Journal Star:

“There are serious problems here,” Cook [City Councilman] said Wednesday afternoon. “I think Lincoln customers deserve better. They are not getting what they have paid for.” The new guide has been beset with problems since its introduction. Complaints have ranged from the guide itself — ugly graphics, incomplete information, etc. — to problems with slow-reacting cable boxes and DVRs after the software was loaded into them, causing some subscribers to reboot one or more times a day.

Cook said he is a Time Warner subscriber and DVR user. As the council’s liaison to the Cable Television Advisory Board, he said he received his upgrade with Time Warner employees before it was introduced to the public.

“I didn’t think it was ready,” he said. “I thought it needed more work before it was released.”

Shrewsbury [Time Warner Spokesperson] said Time Warner will comply with an evaluation

Whoops. Don’t mess with Lincoln, Nebraska. They will call you out, honey. They are not afraid. —MEGHANN MARCO

Cook calls for evaluation of Time Warner Cable [Journal Star]
(Photo: ChadoeKyll)

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  1. ord2fra says:

    That’s my hometown for you! I remember they were going to yank Cablevision’s franchise license/agreement for crummy service back in the 90’s. Not being beholden to corporate taxes makes the council pretty feisty (but you will realize that they still get their money: about $350 to register a $20K for one year).

  2. ghettoimp says:

    Somehow this is the best story ever.

  3. medalian1 says:

    tivo rocks

  4. echy says:

    I wonder if the upgrade is that crappy flash software they were working on in Denver?

  5. UnhappyCableCustomer says:

    Living in Lincoln I can say that the TWC developed DVR software TOTALLY SUCKS. The older Passport software was merely “OK” compared to Tivo but it was amazing and wonderful compared to what we have to put up with now. (The new software is nicknamed “the blue abortion” – if you’re unlucky enough to have it you will understand.)

  6. adamondi says:

    Indeed. TiVo does rock. Sounds like Mr. Cook needs to invest in a quality DVR. May I recommend the TiVo Series3?

  7. Cooter says:

    I am also one of the unlucky in Lincoln. It’s worse than just the DVRs, though. The new software has been pushed to all of the cable boxes. So now even my wonderful TiVo’s miss programs all the time due to constant reboots and power downs (sometimes several times a week) of all the cable boxes. My TW HD DVR box just stopped recording all of my series and I had to re-add them. Unfortunately what it does record won’t play back reliably. Its horrible. Must be nice to have a local monopoly.

  8. Greasy Thumb Guzik says:

    That’s a photo of Nebraska’s state capitol building, not Lincoln’s city hall.

  9. Bender says:

    I’m in Fremont NE, and we considered the same cable market as Lincoln. The new software is beyond horrible. The ugly interface is least of the problems.

    10-30 second freezes while scrolling through the guide or a menu.

    The 15 minute skip works about half the time.

    Random reboots in the middle of watching a show.

    Inability to recognize and record some shows as a series.

    And my favorite. Schedule a recording on HD ABC, and it will also record it on regular ABC. Stop the recording on ABC and it will also stop it on HD ABC. (same goes for the other networks) So much for being able to record two shows at once.

  10. Topperdog says:

    Well, the software was just rolled out here in Dallas, and we also have a lot of problems. Now when I power on the cable box, no signal appears and the dreaded, “channel should be available shortly” message is on screen. Yet, when you hit channel up, and then channel down (putting you on the exact same channel, the svideo signal is there.

    I received the complimentary, “Reset the cable box, but we may need to schedule a tech to visit” message from customer support, but in the 4 years I have had DVR and HDTV, this only began to happen when the new DVR sofware was roled out a few days ago. Now no scheduled DVR programs are recoerded because at power up no signal is present. Ayone else experience this?