We have already had to cope with the shrinking number of analog channels due to Shaw's Digital Network Upgrade, most recently the loss of channel 48, the Environment Canada channel. I am unclear on how many more analog channels we will lose. At the moment we seem to get only 29 channels in Winnipeg.
We are being told that we have to switch to a digital box to get back even close to the number of analog channels that we used to get with Basic Cable.
We tried the DCT700 once already and our older senior just could not get used to the experience. It isn't clear to me whether the simplified remote that is available now will make a difference or not but we will have to try it.
The other problem with the DCT700 is the inclusion of unsubscribed channels in the Guide and when moving up and down the channels. This is very annoying and confusing to our senior. It's very annoying to me too. That's where the DCX3200-M comes in. Its Guide does not include these extraneous channels. But, will it be more confusing or less? I don't know.
Additionally while Shaw is willing to provide only one DCT700 rent-free per household, independent of how many Analog TVs one might have had, for us this is sufficient.
Another problem with the DCT700 is that one is now allowed to have only one of these in a given household. Any additional boxes, I was told by a walk-in CSR today, have to be HD boxes.
Further complicating matters are the cost of Basic Cable ($41.95) versus the cost of Personal TV ($34.95) and the different channels available in each. Also, it seems with Basic Cable, we also get HD Basic with 21 HD whereas with Personal TV there are 18 HD channels. We are going to have to look at both options to see which is the lesser of two evils.
Oh, but such comparisons might be difficult/meaningless because the channel numbers, and possibly the offerings (?), for the DCX3200-M are different from those that are published and seen on DCX3400s (now discontinued?) and Gateways (soon to be discontinued??)..