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Old 17th February 2021, 02:43 PM   #1
catsmate
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Angry Apple TV is a festering pile of crap

A moderately technically literate friend got one, not by choice, but as part of an Eir TV "upgrade".

It's ******* awful crap.
The "remote" is Applish, i.e. small, arty and useless. It uses a touchpad rather than buttons. It also comes uncharged (yes integral rechargeable battery) and uses *Lightning*for power.
******* useless proprietary Apple crap.
Also 32GB storage, naturally (being Apple) with no storage expansion; it uses "the cloud" for recordings. Until there's a connectivity problem...

It insists on setting up an Apple ID before it'll let him actually watch the television service he's paid for.
Oh and the supposed RTE Player and PrimeVideo apps? Not installed. To install them you need an Apple ID and an iTunes account. With credit card, even for the "free" app. I asked Eir if they accepted liability for monetary loss due to data theft and the drone, and her supervisor, went quiet.
Interestingly they were unaware of the provisions of Interception of Postal Packets and Telecommunications (Regulation) Act of 1993....

Also the TV channels weren't present, but that was Eir's incompetence.

I laid into the support, customer care and contracts staff and gave them an ultimatum. Grovelling ensued.
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Old 17th February 2021, 03:09 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by catsmate View Post
I laid into the support, customer care and contracts staff and gave them an ultimatum. Grovelling ensued.
It always sucks when someone calls in angry about policies you had no input in creating and no authority to change and no standing to even discuss changes with the decision-makers, and you end up having to kiss their ass because they're taking their frustrations out on you and you'll lose your job if you don't succeed in turning your powerlessness into their appeasement.

I'm sure that poor customer service rep and her supervisor really appreciated* you cleverly debating them into silence over a policy question well above their pay grade and outside their department. I'm sure she also really appreciated* being referred to as a "drone".

The Apple TV thing sounds extremely frustrating. But you're allowing your frustration to cause you to act like a dick. Don't act like a dick.
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Old 18th February 2021, 05:46 AM   #3
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I got a years free Apple+ buying something from Apple for the kid. Almost none of my devices could run it except my iPad - which I never use for watching movies or TV.
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Old 18th February 2021, 07:13 AM   #4
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Well we have a productive morning. Luckily I had their CEO's card from a tech event back in the old days.

My friend has gotten his TV/mobile/fibre/phone for free for the year, a new phone (a Pixel naturally ) and a new tablet. Plus a non-Apple media box and accessories. He could have gotten all the sports channels too but didn't want them; he does get all the add-on film channels.
Amazing what the right pressure can do...
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Old 18th February 2021, 10:40 AM   #5
plague311
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Originally Posted by catsmate
Apple TV is a festering pile of crap
FTFY

Also, I agree with theprestige. Please don't take out your anger out on tier 1 tech reps who probably had a total of 20 hours of training to help you. It has nothing to do with them. You're going to get much further by treating them well, speaking calmly and working with them instead of butting heads or insulting them.

Also, they probably went quiet because, as you stated, there's a ******* law for it. They don't need to understand it. You asked a question you knew they wouldn't know the answer to in order to showboat you knew about a law. Grats.
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Old 18th February 2021, 03:59 PM   #6
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20 hours of training? It's not the 2000s you know, today the training will be 1hour on how to the CS software if they are lucky!
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Old 18th February 2021, 04:43 PM   #7
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I have Apple TV 3, circa 2012, and it is excellent. Still gets updates too.
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Old 18th February 2021, 05:16 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by catsmate View Post
AOh and the supposed RTE Player and PrimeVideo apps? Not installed. To install them you need an Apple ID and an iTunes account. With credit card, even for the "free" app.

This is one reason I like temporary credit cards. I'll use a card with a $1 limit for this sort of thing. Same goes for anything with a "free 30 days" or whatever where you must opt out before time is up or be charged. I've forgotten to cancel these sorts of things twice over the years, and they were of course unable to charge the credit card. I've only run into one company that wouldn't take temporary cards. I forget what it was, but I was able to pay through PayPal instead with a temporary card.
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Old 19th February 2021, 09:53 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
20 hours of training? It's not the 2000s you know, today the training will be 1hour on how to the CS software if they are lucky!
You're absolutely right! I started doing that type of work in the 2000s. I got stuck romanticizing the past.

Originally Posted by Modified View Post
This is one reason I like temporary credit cards. I'll use a card with a $1 limit for this sort of thing. Same goes for anything with a "free 30 days" or whatever where you must opt out before time is up or be charged. I've forgotten to cancel these sorts of things twice over the years, and they were of course unable to charge the credit card. I've only run into one company that wouldn't take temporary cards. I forget what it was, but I was able to pay through PayPal instead with a temporary card.
This. Is. Genius. I can't believe I hadn't thought of this before. Best idea I've heard in a long, long time and I thank you for sharing it.
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Old 19th February 2021, 10:27 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by plague311 View Post
This. Is. Genius. I can't believe I hadn't thought of this before. Best idea I've heard in a long, long time and I thank you for sharing it.

If it happens too much I suppose they'll stop taking them but it's worked well for the last few decades. Temporary cards use specific numbering, so they are easy to filter. Also I think only Citibank has them now. When Bank of America quit theirs I stopped using their card and switched to Citi.

Off topic, but the other reason I like them is that if hackers steal your card number they can't use it. Sure, you get your money back anyway, but it's simpler not to lose it in the first place and I like the satisfaction of knowing the thieves wasted their time. A few years ago someone tried to use one of my temp numbers to check into a hotel in Miami, then when that failed to buy some things at the hotel gift shop. Also, since the numbers are all different I knew where I used it. It was at a toy store in Daytona. It could have been hacked or more likely an employee at the store tried to use the number. Either way I won't buy from them again.
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Old 20th February 2021, 04:35 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by plague311 View Post
Please don't take out your anger out on tier 1 tech reps who probably had a total of 20 hours of training to help you. It has nothing to do with them.
If there is no quick and easy escalation path to someone who can actually fix the problem, which was not technical but rather administrative/contractual, then I'm going to bulldoze them. Courtesy is one thing but, frankly, my time is valuable.

Originally Posted by plague311 View Post
You're going to get much further by treating them well, speaking calmly and working with them instead of butting heads or insulting them.
I covered, in about forty seconds, their entire checklist. That actually saved saved time, on both ends, and should have triggered an immediate escalation

[quote=plague311;13400819]
Also, they probably went quiet because, as you stated, there's a ******* law for it.
Well they should understand the law regarding the recording of phone calls.

Originally Posted by plague311 View Post
They don't need to understand it. You asked a question you knew they wouldn't know the answer to in order to showboat you knew about a law. Grats.
No. I informed them that I was also recording the call and that I would have no hesitation in making the inability of Eir to assist their customers public.
More bad publicity for them.
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Old 20th February 2021, 04:45 AM   #12
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I have Apple TV, it's great.
I have used it for years.
I also have a Fire Stick and a Chromecast but they don't get used anymore as my new TV has them both built in with their own buttons on the remote.
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Old 22nd February 2021, 07:31 PM   #13
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Apple TV is great for those invested in using Apple devices and services, and those who want it. Being forced into the Apple garden by a third party is pretty crappy, especially when they don't have to (like if that's the only way to access the third party's services).
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Old 22nd February 2021, 09:06 PM   #14
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I have had an AppleTV in every iteration since its debut. But I’m an Apple fanboy. Still I have had no problems with it ever, it does everything I want it to and I can control it and input text using my phone seamlessly.

These things are down to preference. I’ve tried a Chromecast a Roku (which is built into my patio TV) and a FireTV box. None of them have worked as seamlessly with my MacBook, iPhone and iPad. We have AppleTV at work and it’s so easy to just airplay a presentation from my phone or computer. This is all personal preference.

I mean, don’t all of these devices have a need to sign up for an account? Don’t they all require you to buy into their “ecosystem,” in order to get the most out of them?
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Old 23rd February 2021, 08:03 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
I mean, don’t all of these devices have a need to sign up for an account? Don’t they all require you to buy into their “ecosystem,” in order to get the most out of them?
I have 3 or 4 chromecasts in my house and have never had to setup a gmail account or anything to use it. Turn it on, attach it to my WiFi, and I cast VLC from any computer, laptop, or my cell phone from my NAS.

I can't speak for Roku, never had one and, like you with Apple, I've never had any issues with any of my Chromecasts.
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Old 23rd February 2021, 12:40 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Babbylonian View Post
Apple TV is great for those invested in using Apple devices and services, and those who want it. Being forced into the Apple garden by a third party is pretty crappy, especially when they don't have to (like if that's the only way to access the third party's services).
I have an ATV4k. The reason I got it was at the time it was the only device out there that supported HDR10 and Dolby Vision. My TV at the time didn't support Amazon Prime video which is why I needed an external box. I'm NOT an Apple person at all, but its a fantastic device... now that FINALLY they support 24Hz (not 23.976) which Netflix uses for some originals, in a beta update.

I love the way I can search for a program on any service, and it keeps track of what I've watched and whats upcoming through any of them, except Netflix because they have opted out and they did the same thing on GoogleTV. I haven't found it to be a walled garden at all. Like if I search for a movie that AppleTV has on itunes AND its on Hulu or Disney+, they aren't even deceptive, it leads me to the service that I have installed over their own pay per view service. Theres a Spotify app even though Apple has a competed service, and theres even a Plex app (for non-copyrighted downloads )

ETA: oh and yeah the remote sucks. Good thing the box supports CEC controls so I can use my TV's remote. And yeah their own power connector rather than USB is annoying but I'm nearly certain it came with one so its not like you have to go buy one.

Last edited by lobosrul5; 23rd February 2021 at 01:02 PM.
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Old 23rd February 2021, 01:30 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
I mean, don’t all of these devices have a need to sign up for an account? Don’t they all require you to buy into their “ecosystem,” in order to get the most out of them?
No, if you have bought in then they are obviously well integrated, I think you may need an Amazon account for the Fire Stick, but you don't have to have Prime or purchase anything. I've bought a few films & TV series but not many & mostly run YouTube, Plex, Netflix, More4, BBC iPlayer etc. I had a Chromecast too but found running everything from my phone/tablet a pain. The Firestick has a remote control which for AV I like, and better still works with my Logitec Harmony set up, which means the missus can use it!
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Old 23rd February 2021, 02:34 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by P.J. Denyer View Post
I had a Chromecast too but found running everything from my phone/tablet a pain.
Really? That's my favorite thing about it. I always have my phone in my hands, and am logged into all my streaming. Being able to just bounce around, use a keyboard for searching on my phone, and just sending VLC shows to my chromecast is super convenient.
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Old 24th February 2021, 02:07 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by plague311 View Post
I have 3 or 4 chromecasts in my house and have never had to setup a gmail account or anything to use it. Turn it on, attach it to my WiFi, and I cast VLC from any computer, laptop, or my cell phone from my NAS.

I can't speak for Roku, never had one and, like you with Apple, I've never had any issues with any of my Chromecasts.
You need a Google account for Google TV if you're using it (and your device supports it). Otherwise no it's not necessary.

The Apple TV device requires an AppleID to use and an iTunes account to install PrimeVideo.


BTW thanks to the various support calls my friend has received:
two additional Apple TV boxes
four HDMI cables (of various lengths)
three 'enhanced' (i.e. working) remote controls
two Bluetooth keyboards
one 'air mouse'
We may be having a sale....
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