Time Warner Cable Wants to Ditch the Cable Box for the $149 Fan TV

Time Warner Cable Wants to Ditch the Cable Box for the $149 Fan TV

Fan TV 310x

This small streaming unit could soon replace the bulky, expensive cable box under your HDTV.

Everyone has a love-hate relationship with their cable box. You love it because (assuming you have cable) it pipes new TV shows into your house the night they air, which means you don't have to murder co-workers for spoiling that thing in Game of Thrones...because you've already watched it!

But the hate comes in many forms: Cable boxes are expensive, and usually dated. Older software hinders what should be a state-of-the-art experience. Something you're paying $50 or more per month for (not to mention the cable box rental fee) should feel new, right?

Fanhattan wants to the change the cable TV experience with its Fan TV streaming box, and Time Warner Cable wants in at the start. Fan TV is a $149 ($99 if you pre-order) coax cable-free box, about the size of the average Roku, that will bring Time Warner Cable TV and On Demand services into your home later this year. Along with TWC content, users can also access Redbox, Target Ticket, and other services (no Netflix yet).

The Fan TV remote is another selling point, as Fanhattan has ditched buttons, and gone with a 100% touch interface on the soapbar-looking remote. Combined with a sleek UI, and Fan TV looks to be the most modern way to get cable TV in the US.

Expect the Fan TV in June. TWC seems to be the only cable provider on board right now, but hopefully others will follow suit soon, too.

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I wonder what Comcast will think of this thing if they and Time Warner do end up merging. Would they scrap it and introduce their own one? Lol to those who buy it if that does happen.

"Combined with a sleek UI, and Fan TV looks to be the most modern way to get cable TV in the US."
No way this tiny form factor can compete with that new Amazon box.

Kenjitsuka:
"Combined with a sleek UI, and Fan TV looks to be the most modern way to get cable TV in the US."
No way this tiny form factor can compete with that new Amazon box.

...can the Amazon FireTV pull down live cable television?

If I was satisfied with streaming I wouldn't be paying for cable. No way will I keep paying for it if the service degrades into the laggy, buffering, skipping crap I get with streaming.

Devin Connors:

Kenjitsuka:
"Combined with a sleek UI, and Fan TV looks to be the most modern way to get cable TV in the US."
No way this tiny form factor can compete with that new Amazon box.

...can the Amazon FireTV pull down live cable television?

I admit, since it's called Fire TV streaming media box I figured.
It has Prime, isn't that cable? I'm not actually from the US, so I might be wrong here!

Cable here works way different here, all boxes combine everything.

Kenjitsuka:

Devin Connors:

Kenjitsuka:
"Combined with a sleek UI, and Fan TV looks to be the most modern way to get cable TV in the US."
No way this tiny form factor can compete with that new Amazon box.

...can the Amazon FireTV pull down live cable television?

I admit, since it's called Fire TV streaming media box I figured.
It has Prime, isn't that cable? I'm not actually from the US, so I might be wrong here!

Cable here works way different here, all boxes combine everything.

Ah, gotcha. In the US, some streaming boxes can pull cable down -- but not live TV. Basically whatever the cable provider has decided to allow to web users. The Fan TV can do On Demand content, as well as live TV, from the looks of it.

And yet it still provides me nothing I don't already have access to with my current internet-only subscription. No thanks, Time Warner.

you could soon replace the cable box....months ago

other online streaming services have been available for ages, for cheaper, on a variety of devices that are also cheaper. last horse crosses the effing finish line.

Mcoffey:
And yet it still provides me nothing I don't already have access to with my current internet-only subscription. No thanks, Time Warner.

No box = cheaper cable bills = subscribing to more packages for TV = I get HBO again without paying out the ass for everything else.

Kyogissun:

Mcoffey:
And yet it still provides me nothing I don't already have access to with my current internet-only subscription. No thanks, Time Warner.

No box = cheaper cable bills = subscribing to more packages for TV = I get HBO again without paying out the ass for everything else.

No cable bills > cheaper cable bills. Netflix gives me plenty of entertainment for my 8 bucks a month. And then there's all the free stuff on the internet.

HDTVs have bulky, expensive cable boxes under them? I'm sorry, I've had a computer and internet for the last few decades, its so hard to keep up on those old technologies.

If it's Time Warner that's "no Netflix ever".

I don't have any strong feelings about the device itself but that remote sounds absolutely terrible. Touch screens are quite a bit more fallible than buttons from fragility to ease of interference. Why did it need to change? It's probably, how did the author word it..., "Something you're paying $50 or more per month for (not to mention the cable box rental fee) should feel new, right?" I don't care how it "feels" if it is functioning properly.

Saucycarpdog:
I wonder what Comcast will think of this thing if they and Time Warner do end up merging. Would they scrap it and introduce their own one? Lol to those who buy it if that does happen.

Given that nobody seems to want to have anything to do with Warner for their service anyway, my guess would be they'll tank too quickly to make any real headway.

So it's a small cable box and they updating their streaming services to provide content as soon as the internet could. Well it's good this box is smaller with all that functionality. Most on demand cable boxes I've seen are the 12"x15"x2" monsters you could sit a average sized CRT on without hurting it, with the basic cable channel box being as small as this new box. It's just sad their doing this as more and more people are finding ways to hook up their PC to their main viewing screen and finding legal(or otherwise) ways to watch the latest episodes online.

If the Comcast merger goes through(and the Four Horsemen ride), Comcast might adopt this idea. It would just jack up the prices of the box and add extra monthly fees if TWC hasn't. I'd rather just get a decent rate on internet without greedy caps that would be reached in the first weak. That won't generate them extra money, though.

Sarge034:
I don't have any strong feelings about the device itself but that remote sounds absolutely terrible. Touch screens are quite a bit more fallible than buttons from fragility to ease of interference. Why did it need to change? It's probably, how did the author word it..., "Something you're paying $50 or more per month for (not to mention the cable box rental fee) should feel new, right?" I don't care how it "feels" if it is functioning properly.

A touch remote would suck. If its a screen not just a pad, in a dim room the thing will probably be really annoying to use and will suck batteries like a vampire(that sucks batteries). The also might have jammed a lithium ion pack in it, so now you got another incendiary device in your lap. Regardless of whether it's a screen or touch pad, having water, like condensation from a cold drink, on your fingers will screw it up, and there is no tactile feed back where you could feel for buttons who's location on the remote you remember. Also it's drives the price up and would be more fragile.

So, how is it that Fanhattan (or whatever the hell this company is called) needed to develop this box, instead of Scientific Atlanta or any number of the long-established cable box manufacturers out there? They're acting like this is some revolutionary idea when it's...not.

Color me unimpressed. And the touch-based remote sounds like a pain in the ass.

The idea is fine, but going to have to bring things down some more to compete with the Netflix and $35 Chromecast setup I've got going on now.

Sounds dumb.. i'me perfectly fine with my HD cable box.. why should I have to go pay $150 for a box that small, when i'm only paying like $10 a month to rent the HD cable box I have.. yeah, I mean in the long run, a $150 one time fee is better then a monthly fee, but I'm still fine with my HD Cable box the way it is

Yeah, I bought a touch screen remote once. Good reviews and all that. Worst. Remote. Ever. Tactile buttons already work perfectly, allowing the user to operate the device without having to look away from the TV. Touch screen buttons? You have to look down for even the simplest operations. No thanks.

bulky and expensive cable boxes? you mean those cable boxes that can fit in my hand and are free of charge as long as im using the service (and they take it back once i stop)? why would i pay for one....

 

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