ATT U-Verse major limitations

Contributor

ATT U-Verse major limitations

[ Edited ]

We just subscribed to AT&T U-Verse two weeks ago. This report comes to you 2-1/2 years after your disappointing experience. We too have multiple daily tv viewers. We all record in SD so that we don't run out of space. It looks like space will not be an issue. However,  we also did not understand the limitations of this system when we signed on. Does four streams mean, only four things can go on at any one time? If so, why are we renting 7 boxes? We have six adults living here and they all want to record and watch television. Now we're told that we can piggyback onto another tv watching live tv or watch something that is recording. How do you find out what is recording or what someone else is watching if AT&T only lets you choose from watching a recording or interrupting another tv? We don't know who we're interrupting. It's causing mass confusion and anger around here. I would like for someone to clearly explain what the magic combination is. Can we have two SD recordings, watch live television on two sets and watch recordings in other rooms? We don't know. When we call tech support, they don't seem to know anything other than the fact that they only provide four live steams to each residence. This has been repeated to us more than once, but they don't explain what that means. Why can't we watch recorded shows everywhere at the same time if we have a "whole home dvr"? If shows are recorded on a hard drive, we should be able to view them anywhere, anytime, but that's just not the case. When the representative came here, he clearly knew that we had 7 televisions and 6 adults. It shouldn't have been hard for him to see that we were going to run into trouble right away, since he should understand the limitations of the system he was selling us. AT&T should tell people who have more than three televisions and who want to record shows that they are going to have conflicts. It's madness around here. I blame myself because I ordered AT&T U-Verse because of recommendations from family and friends and the fact that it would be cheaper. I did not however do my homework. Our situation is not the same as the typical household. We should have stayed with Cox even though they have gotten outrageous in price. We could only afford to have two dvrs and one box in our house, which meant we had to share tvs and coordinate in order to watch the show everyone records. I never dreamed that AT&T would cause more problems than they solved for us. Often, two or more family members can't watch tv from 7:00 pm to midnight. That's when we are all home! I hate to switch back to Cox, but at least we could watch tv in every room, even if it wasn't recorded shows or we didn't have access to expanded cable because there was no box. At least everyone could watch television. I called AT&T to ask if we could expand our package to include more streams, and I was told no. It's amazing this enormous company hasn't figured out how to provide customers with services that fit individual needs.

Message 1 of 32 (12,922 Views)
Expert

Re: ATT U-Verse major limitations

At this time Uverse is only sending 4 streams to our homes.  Going to another service provider is the only solution for you and the others living in your home to watch different channels on live tv.  We (subs) are hoping that ATT will rollout more streams in the near future.  I only have 4 TVs in my home and have bumped into the 4 stream limitation several times.  If I am recording something whether it is 1, 2, 3, or 4 channels at one time, I have had my tv program suddenly interrupted.  You are not alone in your feelings about the 4 streams but many of us can work around it.  With you having 7 TVs, having Uverse could prove to be a great challenge.

Message 2 of 32 (12,839 Views)
ACE - Expert

Re: ATT U-Verse major limitations

gbienvenu - The technical limitations of u-verse are not that painful for smaller users. Heavier users, like you, are better off with a provider with more streams available.

The four stream limit simply means your seven STBs & DVR can only view/record four different channels at the same time. You can view three previously recorded shows during that time.

The best strategy for overcoming the stream limitation is to record most of your programs - taking advantage of late night showings where possible. But, you cannot even satisfy all your watchers with playing recordings.

Seems like you would need to carefully schedule all busy hour activity & be sure no-one leaves an unwatched STB on. It is not conducive to casual TV viewing.

On the bright side there was a brief period where some viewers did see sven streams. It was withdrawn , but shows att is working towards satisfying your needs. Who knows if and when it will return.
*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 3 of 32 (12,832 Views)

Re: ATT U-Verse major limitations


aviewer wrote:
gbienvenu - The technical limitations of u-verse are not that painful for smaller users. Heavier users, like you, are better off with a provider with more streams available.

The four stream limit simply means your seven STBs & DVR can only view/record four different channels at the same time. You can view three previously recorded shows during that time.

The best strategy for overcoming the stream limitation is to record most of your programs - taking advantage of late night showings where possible. But, you cannot even satisfy all your watchers with playing recordings.

Seems like you would need to carefully schedule all busy hour activity & be sure no-one leaves an unwatched STB on. It is not conducive to casual TV viewing.

On the bright side there was a brief period where some viewers did see sven streams. It was withdrawn , but shows att is working towards satisfying your needs. Who knows if and when it will return.

I was one of those that had the 7 streams for about 2 weeks when I had UVerse installed in my new house.  It was great 3HD and 4SD streams. Wife, son and father in law don't mind watching SD so it worked out well.  Then it went away.  The tech I had out in October after the builders landscaping crew cut my cable next door said they are indeed working on rolling out 7 or 8 streams by the 2nd qtr of next year.  

” Auto racing, bull fighting, and mountain climbing are the only real sports … all others are games.”- Ernest Hemingway
Message 4 of 32 (12,750 Views)
Contributor

Re: ATT U-Verse major limitations

It appears that there are the same limitations with the DVR that it had a year or two ago.  While ATT advertises that it can record 4 TV shows at once, it does not indicate that a HD show counts as two shows.  Thus if you have 2 TV users, both watching a HD show, there are not any additional channels that can be recorded at that time.  Back to Comcast.

Message 5 of 32 (12,269 Views)
ACE - Master

Re: ATT U-Verse major limitations

[ Edited ]

Dillonfries wrote:

It appears that there are the same limitations with the DVR that it had a year or two ago.  While ATT advertises that it can record 4 TV shows at once, it does not indicate that a HD show counts as two shows.  Thus if you have 2 TV users, both watching a HD show, there are not any additional channels that can be recorded at that time.  Back to Comcast.


Dillonfries, what is your profile?  Menu>System Options>System Information>System Resources.

 

Totally untrue about the 1HD=2SD. 

 

Unless you have stream limitations because of your distance to the VRAD, 4HD streams can be watched and/or recorded.  The only limitation is that one of the viewed HD streams must be on a STB and NOT the DVR.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 6 of 32 (12,260 Views)
Tutor

Re: ATT U-Verse major limitations

I've had Uverse for about 2 weeks.  I was told by tier 1 support and the guy that installed my system, that I should be able to record 4 HD shows at the same time.  I had a tech come out last Friday and he tried for 2 hours to get that working.  He thought I should be able to record 4 HD shows at the same time as well.

 

The end result was that after 2 hours of the tech consulting with tier 2 support and another tech, they reached the conclusion that only 3 HD / 1 SD show can be recorded at the same time or 3 HD can be recorded while 1 HD is watched live but without being able to pause.  This is despite the 32 meg profile that everybody said should allow me to record 4 HD at the same time.

 

They did have this capability for awhile but now I feel I have been misled into purchasing this service as this was a major issue.  Can anyone else record 4 HD shows at the same time?

Message 7 of 32 (12,131 Views)
Expert

Re: ATT U-Verse major limitations


jteixeira wrote:

 

They did have this capability for awhile but now I feel I have been misled into purchasing this service as this was a major issue.  Can anyone else record 4 HD shows at the same time?


U-verse has never had the ability to record 4 HD programs at the same time.

Message 8 of 32 (12,130 Views)
Tutor

Re: ATT U-Verse major limitations

Never?  Then they deliberately misled me.  Why do so many people that work for ATT Uverse think that it could/can?  An ATT rep came to my house last night to tell me about an upgrade to the fiber in my neighborhood and he said he has the capability to record 4 HD at the same time.  He was going to check it when he went home.

 

At least 2 Uverse installers/service people and 2 online chat techs and the rep from last night believed that Uverse had the capability.  How can they not know their product?

Message 9 of 32 (12,098 Views)
ACE - Master

Re: ATT U-Verse major limitations

[ Edited ]

jteixeira wrote:

Never?  Then they deliberately misled me.  Why do so many people that work for ATT Uverse think that it could/can?  An ATT rep came to my house last night to tell me about an upgrade to the fiber in my neighborhood and he said he has the capability to record 4 HD at the same time.  He was going to check it when he went home.

 

At least 2 Uverse installers/service people and 2 online chat techs and the rep from last night believed that Uverse had the capability.  How can they not know their product?


That's why it's a good idea to go online and ask UNBIASED people what their thoughts are, what are the true capabilities, what kind of service they've received, etc.

 

It's not unlike, say, buying a new car.  OF COURSE the Ford dealer is going to tell you that Fords are the best car on the road.  A Toyota dealer is going to put down the Ford and tell you that Toyotas are the be all, end all.  Same with Chevrolets.

 

And no, Uverse has never had the capabilities to record 4 HDs programs at once.  I was one of the first to get 4 HDs streams and from day 1 it was record 3 HD streams, 1 HD stream can be watched on a NON-DVR box.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 10 of 32 (12,056 Views)
Tutor

Re: ATT U-Verse major limitations

Your analogy is not quite right.  The Ford, Chevy, and Toyota people are stating OPINIONS.  If someone that is selling me something states a fact about their product that causes me to purchase it, and the fact they stated has never been right, then that is FRAUD.  I was willing to give them the benefit of the doubt if it had been right at the time they said it, but then something changed.  But according to two of you in this forum, it was never right so they either don't know their product or they are committing fraud.

Message 11 of 32 (12,003 Views)
ACE - Master

Re: ATT U-Verse major limitations


jteixeira wrote:

Your analogy is not quite right.  The Ford, Chevy, and Toyota people are stating OPINIONS.  If someone that is selling me something states a fact about their product that causes me to purchase it, and the fact they stated has never been right, then that is FRAUD.  I was willing to give them the benefit of the doubt if it had been right at the time they said it, but then something changed.  But according to two of you in this forum, it was never right so they either don't know their product or they are committing fraud.


If you had gotten the info from a D2D salesperson (independent contractor), I would've said that they probably DON'T know the product (sad? yes) but the fact that the tech told you this is, in fact, sad.  Deceptive?  I'm not so sure about that.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 12 of 32 (11,994 Views)
Teacher

Re: ATT U-Verse major limitations

I, like gbienvenu, am disapointed in the limitations of U-Verse as well as the lack of AT&T's being straight forward about the limitations of their technology in comparison to other providers.

 

I switched from DirecTV where I had their whole home service with two HD DVR's and one non-DVR HD receiver, meaning that I could record four programs at once while still watching a recorded program on any receiver or a live program on the non-DVR unit. I was led to believe by AT&T's online product specialist that the capabilities of the U-Verse Whole Home were the same.

 

I explored Dish w/Hopper as well as DirecTV's offer of a Genie and a slight discount to stay, but U-Verse won out because of the bundling, the expecation of an equivalent service, and good pricing for two years. (The switch came about because I was upgrading my pathetically over-subscribed and under-performing 6MB DSL to U-Verse, as well as the need to add another STB in a room without an existng drop.)

 

I'm sorry to say that I was regretting my decision even before the tech left. He was a great tech and I wouldn't have known about the limitations if it weren't for him, so my main frustration lies with the "Product Specialists" who weren't forthcoming with the truth as well as what I believe is nferior technology. I went over what I had with DirecTV in both terms of equipment and programming with the specialist to make sure that I wasn't losing functionality or benefits. The specialist did inform me of the limitation of not being able to add another DVR, but the 4 simultaneous recordings with U-Verse should have been sufficient since that's what we were already getting by with - at least of they were all HD.

 

Lots of other irritants with the U-Verse system beyond the recording and viewing limitations, some minor & some major:

1) Can't restrict viewing times on STB's

2) No granulaity on setting ratings restrictions. (Allow PG movies, but block PG with D,S or L - same goes with TV.)

3) Complexity of getting to "Favorites"

4) Need to press down to get to next channel when selecting favorites or channels to hide - hundreds of extra button presses needed.

 

As jteixeira stated above, there is a difference between opinions about a product and someone presenting facts about features or functions of the product. I am not going as far as saying it is fraudulent, but it is deceptive and shady.

 

I'm trying my hardest to deal with the limitations and "old technology". I'm planning on putting in 2 or 3 more weeks before opting out, but this might be the first time I've ever taken a provider up on their 30-day money back offer.

 

So AT&T folks if you're reading this: Is there anything that's going to change SOON that would make me want to stay? More streams? Multiple tuners on the DVR's and/or STBs? The ability to add another DVR into the mix? A newer and more intuitive DVR interface?

 

I know I'm asking for a lot, but even my non-techie wife who is more concerned with the payment and who would typically care less about the technology is complaining. 

Message 13 of 32 (11,944 Views)
ACE - Expert
Solution
Accepted by aviewer (ACE - Expert)
‎09-30-2015 1:39 AM

Re: ATT U-Verse major limitations

Coopster - It is difficult to find out all the limitations. I can only give you a pointer on your items 3 &4.

You are using the regular menu for favorites??

You can use the enter button to improve efficiency, somewhat.

You can use number entry to get to a channel. Enter - OK adds channel to favorites.

Enter - down arrow - OK brings up favorites guide.
*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 14 of 32 (11,939 Views)
Highlighted
Tutor

Re: ATT U-Verse major limitations

I will be counting the days until my 30 days is up.  Obviously the problem is more rampant than I imagined.  Dish and Direct TV both have better systems.  I'm just a little wary about going back to a system where my picture goes out when a storm approaches.  Luckily I live in Texas where that doesn't happen too often.

Message 15 of 32 (11,933 Views)
Share this topic
Announcements

Having service trouble? There is an app for that! Use our troubleshooting tool or text myATT to 8758 to download the app. It is much faster than posting on our forums. You will also find some helpful articles below.