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Just signed an 18 month contract and I've never wanted to leave more

lilactime
Tuning in

I've been with Virgin for 14 years. Thick and thin. But I have been utterly dismayed upon my latest new contract. I was assured my service would be the same - it isn't. I was assured the new 360 upgrade from V6 would be a vast improvement - It isn't.

Let's start with the 360. I listen to a lot of radio programs, but can't always be there at the start so I would plan them, record them and listen, usually an hour behind the show. Take James O'Brien on LBC. Starts at 10am when I am usually not at my desk, so I will start listening any time from 11am or 12pm and eventually either catchup or finish the programme at around mid-afternoon. I can't pause, I can't go back and listen again to anything. Pause is nothing but Mute. This has absolutely destroyed my listening pleasure.

Next - I can't set up any searches. I had about 20 searches set up for any programme that had specific people in. Things like a search for "Kate Bush" would record anything that had her as a contributor or a subject. I can't do that any more.

All in all the search and record system is waaaay more limited than it ever was.

I'm obviously annoyed that I have lost all of my recordings on all three boxes, which included some pretty memorable Ben Stokes stuff and the Live announcement of the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

Now I find out I have lost access to the UHD channels on Sky Movies.

So it is not the same, nothing about this is the same. It's poundstore brand.  I've lost the ability to record radio, I've lost almost all useful recording functionality over the V6 all while being told the experience is better.

I am now going to trawl my fineprint. I am well and truly upset after 14 years, they have finally done it to me.

13 REPLIES 13

japitts
Very Insightful Person
Very Insightful Person

It's too late for you now, but for the benefit of others..

What you've done isn't accept a new contract deal, because you could have done that whilst remaining on TiVo/V6 software if you wanted. You have either requested, or accepted an offer to, convert your TV box software to TV360 which is substantially different to TiVo-firmware.

Your contract deal comes with statutory 14days cancellation, but your choice of TV box software doesn't - and this is irreversible. No one in the UK offers TiVo-based firmware to new customers, it is only now available to existing TiVo/V6 customers who choose not to migrate.

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I get that. And as I have read elsewhere "You should have done your research", and yes maybe that is right. However after 14 years you get used to a system and when you are told (I didn't request) that the system is better than the previous system you have a level of trust that means I shouldn't have to research every single bit of the system when renewing a contract "Everything will be the same but better". Particularly when it is such a basic part of what you would expect a TV box to do. Record or plan a radio program is something I have been able to do for 14 years on Virgin and many years before that on SKY. To remove this ability is utterly stupid and absolutely not something I would have expected. This certainly IS NOT an improvement and as you say I wish I had stayed with my V6 software. I am looking to migrate to Sky Q and go back to them for the first time since early 2009.

If there was a way to just re-install the V6 software I would take that in a heartbeat. Thanks for your input though Japitts.

Yes, as you've found, the 360 is missing many features that were available on the 360\V6 box. As well as the ones you've mentioned there are also things like undelete, series link+, series link manager, suggestions, setting of series links for programs not in the current TV guide, ethernet control, keyboard support via USB, switching between tuners with constant buffering, skip-back on fast-forward, quickplay, cancelling individual recordings from a series link, multi-channel series links, separation of recordings between boxes, watching recordings when internet is not available and probably a few others I've forgotten. 

There is unfortunately no PVR available in the UK that offers all the features that the V6\TiVo has (some of them are TiVo patents), so you'll not be able to get them all back, but there are options like Sky (which offers about the same functionality as the 360, but at least you'd get Sky Atlantic) or a Freeview PVR, which obviously means no subscription.

There was one person on here that claimed they'd manged to get their 360 replaced by a V6 (a physical box swap) by using the 14 day cooling off period (and an awful lot of arguing on the phone) but it's certainly not easy, and at some point everyone will be forced to switch over (no one knows when yet, but I suspect it can't be too far off) so it may only be a temporary reprieve.

I am gutted. Tavis you have succinctly covered all of my issues. The Radio side of things has been destroyed. That's 50% of my enjoyment gone and what's left isn't worth £80 a month. From having three separate but network connected useful boxes stuffed with memories collected over 10 years and bags of search capabilities, I am left with a system that wouldn't look out of place on a 1990s local cable TV system that has deleted every program I loved. From memory, Sky+ was better than this (but not the V6) when I left them in early 2009.

So, I have found my solution. I have just handed in my notice. The only thing I will miss is my personal email address but I will switch to my business domain or do the hotmail thing. I have Vodafone for superior upload speeds with symmetry. I have a free radio app among all of the other apps on my LG TVs. So last night I came to the sad conclusion I no longer need VM at all. I haven't worked out quite what to do about normal freeview channels as we do not have an aerial. It'll be a new experience but maybe I will start reading more. Thanks for 14 Years Virgin but really the 360, as an "upgrade" to V6 is a total Turkey. And to sell it as such has lost you a once loyal customer.

wisedroid
Up to speed

There are several threads (some recent) where people in similar positions to you Liliactime have been reverted back to TiVo software. This can happen either through a box swap or they can be reflashed back to TiVo once your account is set back to V6 by the support teams.

I am unsure why the above advice is given when japitts has been on those threads but I assume VIPs/staff have to give the policy view, whereas if you make a complaint/escalate your support ticket then exceptions can be made.

 

nodrogd
Very Insightful Person
Very Insightful Person

@wisedroid wrote:

There are several threads (some recent) where people in similar positions to you Liliactime have been reverted back to TiVo software. This can happen either through a box swap or they can be reflashed back to TiVo once your account is set back to V6 by the support teams.

I am unsure why the above advice is given when japitts has been on those threads but I assume VIPs/staff have to give the policy view, whereas if you make a complaint/escalate your support ticket then exceptions can be made.

 


It has been well publicised that VMs parent company want to drop TiVO firmware in favour of their own product, although a “drop dead” date has yet to be announced. Swap backs will therefore only be putting off the inevitable. Production of the Arris V6, which is the only one that takes TiVO firmware, has now ceased. So any boxes installed with this firmware will now more & more likely be refurb units. There are quite a few posts on here where techs have turned up for faults with only Humax kit in their van.

VM 350BB 2xV6 & Landline. Freeview/Freesat HD, ASDA/Tesco PAYG Mobile. Cable customer since 1993

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wisedroid
Up to speed

Yes absolutely, there is likely to be a point where people are moved from V6 but personally I've seen nothing at all officially on this. I had an engineer round recently and they hadn't heard anything about V6 capable boxes being in short supply. What is to say they won't be around until the next version of the 360 given original TiVo boxes still co-exist?

I guess we can speculate but the actual question here was whether the OP can revert back - which the answer is they might be able to but it is not guaranteed

japitts
Very Insightful Person
Very Insightful Person

@wisedroid wrote:

I assume VIPs/staff have to give the policy view, whereas if you make a complaint/escalate your support ticket then exceptions can be made.


Not at all - as a VIP I'm a customer as much as anyone else, and am not bound to any "policy line"

The reply from @nodrogd pretty well covers this. The couple of examples I've seen where users have got reverted back, have been very much by exception and for good reason. The standard advice remains that a voluntary conversion to TV360 is irreversible - no-one should expect to get buyers remorse over a conversion and for VM to just accept it.

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wisedroid
Up to speed

Fair enough and understood. From my perspective I personally don’t take no for an answer so called Virgin and had very little trouble moving back.

Ultimately to retain a customer it is very little impact for them to allow it whilst it’s still a supported platform. In the case of the OP and others I feel it is unfair to give such a blanket response when infact with some effort they have a possibility of going back to a platform they prefer. 

Edit - my comments really refer to situations such as this where customers weren’t made aware of the change or it’s impact