What first looked like a small e-mail list breach at New York & Company over the weekend was just the tip of the iceberg as multiple national retailers and banks found themselves the victim of the same data hackers.
Mike wanted to renew his suspended love affair with TiVo and inquired about ordering a box through his cable provider. He reconsidered when he was told the only way he could get a TiVo through the company is if he paid an unnecessary $50 “installation fee” to plug the box into his TV and wall.
Tara says she’s stumbled upon a gem of a deal for those who’ve subscribed to TiVo for three years or more: Get the normally $300 TiVo Premiere box for $162 with free shipping. She says you have to ask for the un-advertised promotion.
Victor wants to warn Consumerist readers: no matter how much you love your TiVo, do not jump in and let yourself be an early adopter of the company’s new product, the Premiere (or series 4) box. He and other Premiere users have shared their tales of heartbreak and bugs with the Internet.
Riddle me this, Batman. How many Comcast cable techs does it take to install a TiVo? We’d love to give you an answer, but we can’t because reader Lynn still hasn’t got a working TiVo after 3 appointments. Whoooops.
If you bought a TiVo with an extended warranty at Circuit City before the chain died and came back as a retail zombie, TiVo forum poster Mark has good news and bad news for you: It is still technically possible to use your warranty, but doing so requires superhuman levels of persistence.
Are you struggling with a problem with TiVo that regular customer service can’t solve? Send your complaint to the office of President and CEO Tom Rogers at firstname.lastname@example.org, and you’ll hear back from someone in the Executive Relations department. (Thanks to reader IndyJaws for the info!)
This past summer, Time Warner Cable introduced a new DVR service to subscribers. The New York Observer noted at the time that some of the changes–namely the “Start Over” feature that lets you watch something from the beginning even if you just switched to it–were nice. At least one customer, however, doesn’t agree. In fact, now that he’s given the revamped service a 4-month trial run, he’s ready to list the problems with it, some of which sound suspiciously anti-consumer.
TiVo may not have treated Lee right, taking him for granted and unfairly billing him while cutting off his lifetime service. Maybe it even slept around with cocktail waitresses and D-list reality show stars. But TiVo stopped dragging its feet once Lee told us his story.
Lee’s TiVo saga is enough to scare you off from gift cards and lifetime service subscriptions from the company. It’s a long, not easily summarized tale, but as things stand now, Lee is without service, stuck with an unwarranted $97.64 charge and has a gift card that won’t work.
Over a year ago, Michael didn’t want TiVo service anymore, and he called them to cancel. This would have been a perfectly reasonable request. The problem, he tells Consumerist, is that TiVo refuses to acknowledge his multiple cancellations, and now won’t let him call and try canceling again until he pays the balance that has accrued since his credit card expired.
Reader Tim is canceling TiVO and going with the Comcast DVR and was presented with a retention deal that he was able to resist. Why? Because $299.99 – $100 doesn’t equal $249.99.
TiVo customers have a few different choices when paying for their service plans. The one that’s gamble of sorts is the “lifetime” plan, which includes service for the entire life of your device and currently costs $399. Lifetime service is technically transferable when a TiVo is replaced under warranty, but Nate discovered a new feature: a new $150 fee to transfer service from the original DVR to the replacement.
Sam emailed us with a complaint about TiVo: he says the customer service rep wants to charge him $50 to repair a defective HDMI port on his 5-month-old TiVo HD DVR. Sam can’t understand why he’d have to pay an additional, uncategorized fee when his box is still under warranty. We checked out the warranty details and called TiVo, and it looks like it’s a flat fee (the TiVo rep we spoke with said it was $49) that covers the cost of replacing the unit entirely—in other words, TiVo isn’t going to repair just the port and send it back to you. Note that this only covers boxes outside the first 90 days. If you’re still in the first 90 day window, replacement is free.
A bunch of different technological options to help you eliminate cable — from Apple TV and the XBOX 360 to just hooking a computer to your flat screen. [CNET]
Feature Films For Families—the company that’s been phone-spamming random people over the past few weeks—follows no man’s law! The nonprofit Smart Television Alliance, which works to educate parents on how to improve the television experience for kids*, discovered that the company was using its name without permission.
Reader Mike reports he got screwed buying a used TiVo off eBay. It turned out 1) It would need a new $20 access card for DirecTV to activate it and 2) DirecTV wouldn’t authorize sending a new access card because the box was linked to a defaulted account. The lesson Mike says he learned is that, “If anyone plans on buying any used DirectTV equipment make sure you call DirectTV with the Serial Number and RID number off the unit BEFORE you purchase it to make sure it’s not coming from a defaulted account. If not, you chance buying an electronic brick.” This is true when buying other used electronic service items with service contracts linked to them, like cellphones.