A personal anecdote.
Saturday night my wife and I wanted to watch a movie. I browsed through Comcast’s On Demand stuff on our terribly-designed DVR/cable box and found a few options, and she found a few too. We settled on watching Moneyball, a Starz program that was listed as being free with our subscription. Neato.
I navigated to the movie and pressed Play. The movie started, but was a pixelated and weird mess. “Don’t worry,” my wife said, “They all do that. After a few minutes it should clear up.” Instead, after about a minute, the playback stopped. The system dropped us back all the way to the On Demand menu with no error nor message.
So we tried playing it again. This time we navigated to “Saved Programs”, and pressed Play. The system threw up a “One Moment Please” message and after about 30 seconds, presented us with a generic “I can’t play this!” error message.
We tried once again, this time via a search. Searching for Moneyball brought up three results – two movies, one 12 minutes shorter than the other, and a “Making of” special. We chose the top one, pressed Play, and got the same “I can’t play this!” message.
As one last try, we returned to search and tried the shorter movie. Same thing. Same message.
Total time: about 10 minutes.
At this point, we switched TV inputs to our Apple TV and went to Netflix. My wife mentioned a specific title she thought we’d like, so I searched for it (using my iPhone’s keyboard), found it, and pressed Play.
Total time: about 1 minute.
Seriously, though, whoever put the Comcast cable box together clearly didn’t care about the people using it.
Posted in Consumer Commentary