HD iTunes content overload?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by arogge, Sep 15, 2008.

  1. arogge macrumors 65816

    arogge

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2002
    Location:
    Tatooine
    #1
    I got on another Mac that can run iTunes 8 and tried again to download the new HD video content. The file sizes are ridiculously-large! A 20-minute show for 1.33 GB? A 43-minute show for 2.2 GB? Who's supposed to be paying for this bandwidth? Who's supposed to be paying for the storage for these files? I don't even have enough hard drive space to download last week's freebies. Is Apple going to give me a 2 TB Apple TV soon? My download time estimate in iTunes shows 22 hours required for 2.2 GB of video to download, and I don't have any bandwidth left for anything else while iTunes is downloading. It's cheaper and easier for me to simply buy the DVD copies of what I want to watch.

    I'll keep maintaining the freebies list, but I'm not downloading much more from iTunes TV. I suppose that I could delete the HD copy from the downloads list and only download the regular copy that is bundled with it, but the price tag is still $2.99 per video even if I don't get the HD copy. Why are we wasting so much Internet bandwidth when we could be shipping DVDs instead? It seems to me that shipping DVDs is cheaper than paying for bandwidth, servers, and associated costs for millions of huge downloads. I'd rather pay Apple to write a DVD and ship it to me than to sit here with the computer wasting electricity while waiting for a download that may take a week to finish.
     
  2. ayzee macrumors 6502a

    ayzee

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2008
    #2
    Its not really apples fault, it just shows how far behind other technologies/companies are from apple.
     
  3. ftaok macrumors 601

    ftaok

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2002
    Location:
    East Coast
    #3
    Are you serious? Shipping DVDs involve gasoline ... which is costing a fortune these days.

    Bandwidth is pretty cheap in comparision. I'd say if it's taking that long to d'l your content, then maybe you should upgrade your Internet connection. It took me a couple of minutes to d'l the HD episode of BSG, and I was at a hotel.

    As for needing to delete the HD file, you do know that you can d'l just the SD file instead, right? Not sure about the freebies, but SD-only costs $2. If you opt for HD, you get both HD and SD for $3.

    ft
     
  4. NightStorm macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2006
    Location:
    Whitehouse, OH
    #4
    What did you think was going to happen, Apple would magically fit the HD version in the same filesize as the SD ones??? Bits simply don't work that way...
     
  5. theLimit macrumors 6502a

    theLimit

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2007
    Location:
    up tha holler, acrost tha crick
    #5
    Then why bother buying the HD version? DVD is nowhere near HD quality. With U.S. average broadband speed around 6mbps and 1TB hard drives less than $150, I think Apple got the quality/size ratio about right. That they include the SD version as well makes me very happy, I don't have to wait for the Bluray release and then do two conversions.
     
  6. arogge thread starter macrumors 65816

    arogge

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2002
    Location:
    Tatooine
    #6
    There's unfortunately nothing that I can do about upgrading my Internet connection. I've complained to the telco and am often told that it's going to be a long wait before anything faster becomes available to my area. The only other choice is to get a permit and pay a bunch of money for a T1 line. If you'd like to help me pay for a T1 lease, I'd happily try to upgrade my Internet connection.

    A bigger problem is that there are millions of these downloads happening, and there must be servers and Internet pipes to support them. That all costs lots of money, and yet I still have simple e-mails that take more than two hours to be delivered to recipients in the same locality. With all of the supposedly-unlimited bandwidth available, why isn't my e-mail being delivered faster? :rolleyes:

    I'm downloading only the regular video files now, and I've noticed the link for Standard Definition at $1.99 under the header images in the iTunes directories. I'll separate the next freebies into Standard Definition and High Definition links.
     
  7. oftheheavens macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Location:
    cherry point
    #7
    waaa waa waa who is going to pay for my internet, waaa who is going to pay for my new toys, waaa i cant fit a million movies on my computers and ATV.....Dude if you aren't happy with your internet speed then move, or shut it off and go to blockbuster. No one is going to pay for your entertainment. I downloaded 2 HD titles in under 23mins and i am downloading off of an american server from Japan.... Grow up, or move out of the sticks...
     
  8. ftaok macrumors 601

    ftaok

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2002
    Location:
    East Coast
    #8
    I do feel for you. I'm assuming that you're in the US ... it is a travesty that there are so many places in the US that have crappy access to broadband services.

    I can't speak to the quality of your DSL, but as far as the costs of servers and fiber lines, I gotta believe that broadband services would still be much much cheaper than physical media. You have to remember with DVDs, there are so many things to consider: factories to make the DVD blanks, factories to press the DVDs, transportation and warehouses along each step, the gas used to ship everything, the eventual landfill space used when people throw the DVDs out, etc. With digital distribution, it's basically the electricity to house the server farms that encode the files and the server farms to deliver it. The fiber is already there and is a one time cost (plus maintenance).

    That should help out your DSL situation.
     
  9. arogge thread starter macrumors 65816

    arogge

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2002
    Location:
    Tatooine
    #9
    Who's going to pay for those moving costs? I don't want to move. I want a faster telco service. Not everyone can just pack up and move to another city for a faster Internet connection. My Internet connection is also used for business, not entertainment.

    I'm not really benefiting much from iTunes videos as entertainment. I was complaining because iTunes 8 came out and suddenly many of the videos were showing up as HD-only. It was not clear about how to return to the regular resolution. When I really want to watch something, I get it on DVD, with more features and compatibility than are available on a downloadable copy.

    I don't understand why so many people seem to have such fast download speeds and it's taking my connection more than 12 hours to download 1.5 GB. I'm not quite living in a rural area, either. The telco apparently doesn't want to bring fibre to my area because everybody else has those stupid satellite dishes on their houses. If I want something faster, I have to get a permit for a residential installation of a T1 line.

    The other problem that you don't seem to understand is that somebody has to pay for the servers and pipes to transport all of this data. There's another recent thread reporting the problems with what happens when many iTunes users suddenly start downloading many TB of data and cause an overload. Then Apple has to invest more money in expanding its server capacity and network capacity, along with all of the other providers between clients and Apple. It's not as simple as paying a fee and getting instant service for your own personal entertainment.

    I have noticed that the iTunes Store has crashed several times in the past few months, particularly on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Some videos become unavailable, before and during downloading, and the store becomes very slow to access. I sometimes don't update the freebies list until after Thursday because I can't access the store. There's simply too much bandwidth being demanded and too many people wrongly-assuming that they can suck as much of it as they want without incurring any external costs.
     
  10. ftaok macrumors 601

    ftaok

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2002
    Location:
    East Coast
    #10
    Where do you live? I'm guessing that you have cable services available to you, right? I've found that cable is much much much faster than comparably priced DSL in my area (SE Pennsylvania). I haven't tested my connection speeds, but I do remember that I'm in the area of 2 to 3 Mbps measured downstream of an 802.11g router.
     
  11. Mackilroy macrumors 68040

    Mackilroy

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2006
    #11
    I live in a small town (around 22,000 people) and it doesn't take me anywhere near 22 hours to download a 43-minute video - more like an hour or so. And where are you getting the 2.2 GB = 43 minutes? The first file I downloaded for HD was approximately 1.3 GB for 43 minutes - the SD file was half that size. You seem to have a lot of assumptions and no data at all
     
  12. Shoesy macrumors 6502a

    Shoesy

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2007
    Location:
    Colchester, UK.
    #12
    I've got 4mb broadband and no download limit! Yay! Only thing is you can't download hd in the Uk. Think yourself lucky :)
     
  13. aristobrat macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    #13
    First off, there is an extra cost incurred for downloading 99.99% of iTunes HD content.

    Second off, the bandwidth demand placed on Apple's end of the pipe has nothing to do with why your connection is so slow.
     
  14. arogge thread starter macrumors 65816

    arogge

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    Feb 15, 2002
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    Tatooine
    #14
    Cable also wasn't installed for my section of housing, so I've been waiting for fibre. DSL is the only service available without digging and a permit, and that's what the telco won't do when almost every house has at least one dish from DirecTV, because the telco wants to bundle television services with the Internet access.
     
  15. arogge thread starter macrumors 65816

    arogge

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    Tatooine
    #15
    A pilot episode was about an hour long, and I assumed from the episodes list that they were all 43 minutes long. The shorter episodes are 1.33 to 1.4 GB. The video length isn't displayed during the download. The download estimate is now showing 14 hours required for a 2.2 GB download and no other network usage, but the connection may stall again and go back to a 22-hour estimate or cancel my download. At least iTunes saves the broken downloads in the cache.
     
  16. arogge thread starter macrumors 65816

    arogge

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    Tatooine
    #16
    My upload speeds are even slower. It takes me about 25 hours to upload 1 GB. It's so slow that I often send my data on a DVD to someone with a T1 line. The shipping is cheaper and more reliable than waiting for my slow connection.
     
  17. ftaok macrumors 601

    ftaok

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2002
    Location:
    East Coast
    #17
    In all honesty, your broadband experience is not typical of most users in the US. While shipping a DVD may be cheaper, it certainly isn't faster, even at your speeds.

    Have you looked into using a celluar broadband card? It's not faster than cable/fiber, but it's gotta be faster than your current DSL. It's not cheap and if you're using it for split uses (I think you mentioned you use it for business as well), it might bog down. But it may be an option until you can get fiber.

    ft
     
  18. arogge thread starter macrumors 65816

    arogge

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2002
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    Tatooine
    #18
    Using fibre connections is better than using a physical distribution network, but the fibre isn't here.

    The other thing that's bad is the mobile phone networks. They're so overloaded that if the demand suddenly increases, the whole network goes down. The wireless companies push these thousands-of-minutes per-month billing plans, but the network collapses when too many subscribers actually try to use the network at the same time. There should be enough network capacity built to support all of the subscribers at the same time before selling cheap calling plans with so many minutes of call time that the subscribers can't use them all in a month. I'm tired of dropped calls, delayed transfers, and interrupted transmissions. Those problems include a few iPhones that I've called recently. It's like these phones do everything except receive phone calls.
     
  19. arogge thread starter macrumors 65816

    arogge

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2002
    Location:
    Tatooine
    #19
    Yes, and it's $40-$60 per month. Maybe I'll call the telco again this week. The problem is that the targeted customers are apparently only subscribing to the fibre service for the entertainment, not for business. They want to watch HD TV and send video e-mails and do the other silly things shown in the advertisements. I want a fast and reliable network connection for work.

    Instead of fibre installations, there are houses in my area with up to four dishes on their roofs. Some of these people have bunches of money to spend on their television service subscriptions, but they don't maintain their properties. You'd also hardly see these people because they're sitting in front of their televisions so much.
     
  20. arogge thread starter macrumors 65816

    arogge

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    Feb 15, 2002
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    Tatooine
    #20
    http://www.pcworld.com/article/151132/article.html


    I'm still waiting on a 1.6 GB download, estimated at more than 15 hours to finish.
     
  21. mrgreen4242 macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    #21
    Shipping DVDs is probably, almost assuredly, faster when scaled to the right levels. Say the amount of time to ship 1 pound of DVDs vs. the time it takes to download that amount of data. Even with a fast cable modem (sustained 1MB per second) it would take a full day to download 10 DVD-DL's. I can get you 100 DVDs delivered in the same time period.

    So, point is, for small amounts of data the internet makes sense, but for very large pieces of data it makes sense to physically move the media to where you need it.
     
  22. Saladinos macrumors 68000

    Saladinos

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2008
    #22
    20Mb and no download limit. Apple really should get their HD content sorted internationally, and add HD movies to the PC store while they're at it (for purchase, not just rental).

    I doubt the issue is bandwidth. Apple use Akamai to mirror content (although DRM is applied server-side, meaning Akamai's servers either have to run that custom software, or not serve iTunes content).
     
  23. ftaok macrumors 601

    ftaok

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2002
    Location:
    East Coast
    #23
    I just did the math ... your internet connection is running at 250 Kbps, which is much lower than most DSL providers advertise at (in my area, typically budget DSL runs at 768 Kbps). If you had access to even a 2 Mbps cable provider, you'd be downloading that file in less than 2 hours.

    Good point when you look at it that way. I hadn't thought of it that way at all. I guess you got to use the distribution method that makes the most sense for the situation.

    ft
     
  24. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #24
    Sorry to hear that.

    Well HD downloads is not for people with slower broadband connections.

    I can download a 1.6 GB in 4 minutes, but the issue I have to finding storage to fit all the downloads. Also I'm sure when cable rolls out DOCSIS 3.0 officially and get competitive, I'll be getting faster connections for the same price.
     
  25. emt1 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2008
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    #25
    You have got to be freaking kidding me! I guess you just can't make some people happy. Everyone has been wanting HD... so we get it... and you complain about filesize. It's HD!! If you don't want it - don't buy it!
     

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