Does internal storage size matter when it comes to using set top box? New kid on the block Fetch TV says it does, Telstra with their new T Box says it doesn’t, while Foxtel who only have a 500GB internal box with no external attach capability are still refusing to say when their box will be upgraded to take external storage.
According to Scott Lorson, the CEO of Fetch TV which is a new TV content Company storage size is important which is why he has launched their new service in partnership with iiNet with a built in 1TB of storage.
Telstra on the other hand have chosen to give consumer the choice of how much storage they want by selling their T Box for $299 with the option of being able to attach an external storage drive on top of the built in 320GB drive.
Currently 1TB attach drives are selling for $125 in various computer stores which when combined with the $299 purchase price of the Telstra T Box is still cheaper than the $499 asking price for the Fetch TV offering via iiNet.
The recent launch of the Telstra T Box with its 1300 movies and the new Fetch TV is set to put pressure on the Hybrid Television TiVo which sells for $699. Currently Hybrid is offering a $1TB drive for free if a consumer signs up for their CASPA content service. The offer ends in July.
Fetch TV who are struggling to source content for their offering was recently forced to withdraw statements claiming that they had signed content deals with several content providers including Discovery Networks, National Geographic, MTV Networks, Fox International Channels, and E! Entertainment Television.
Also included in the withdrawn announcement were content deals with BBC World News, CNBC, ABC, Roadshow Entertainment, Disney Media Distribution, MGM, and content from Lions gate.
In an interview with the Financial Review Fetch TV CEO Scott Lorson tried to position the case for built in storage Vs attached external storage. He said Most of the DVR’s out there offer 320 gigabyte or less of storage meaning that consumers will be more focused on what they have to delete than what they want to record”.
Telstra has dismissed Lorson’s claims and so have several attach storage Companies. A spokesperson for Western Digital said “The future is a set top box that is low cost has access to good content and allows an external storage device to be attached. This will allow home owners to attach up to 4 Terabytes of storage if not more as new drives become available”.
Robbee Minicola the CEO of TiVo has also dismissed Lorson’s claims saying “Fetch TV is a subscription service you have to get as part of a broadband plan with an ISP”.
SmartHouse believes that the ideal model moving forward is attached home storage. This allows users to upgrade or expand their storage as content files get bigger.