I didn't see the exchange between Rat and <insert alias here> (Richard) so I can't comment on that, only that I know Rat was also unfortunate to have bought one and been treated the same as us, if not worse as he had been told things which led him to back up TM's empty promises and backfire on him.... not a nice position to be in. As for threats of legal proceeding due to slandering, well actually the word you are looking for is libel, not slander - wouldn't want you looking stupid and using the wrong words for something would we?
The way I see it, keeping to the facts and not getting personal:
The TM800HD to this day still does not do all the functions it was sold as doing, timeshift/pvr, DTS and certain codecs (off the top of my head). As a user we have been explicitly told to update firmwares etc but still not working as it should. We were promised true Open Source with public release SVN which took sooo long and was disappointing, recalls for overheating and fan fitting, recall for wrong processer code (sweet baby Jesus) and not to mention the USB adapter bodge to get HDD working, having to sacrifce one of the spec offered USB ports to accomodate it - basically a complete nightmare for all involved, including Technomate.
We were offered a refund in one hand, while in the other told that "we would be foolish to do it as the final working image will be done in <insert random number> of weeks and we would all see how great TM/iQ/UR etc are" (paraphrasing).
Fast forward 2 years (although not in the Media Player) and the TM800HD is still not working to spec. I think the last promise was that things would be finished in July 2011 after being promised by the actual Richard himself that they would be working non-stop to get it finsihed and on nothing else.
We have since been told that the 'Team' are now working hard on the upcoming release of the Tm-Twin-OE, and once it's finished they would go back to the TM800 and get it finished. We will have to wait and see about this, particularly as last week SatDrRichard threw a paddy and said TM800 was dead.
For whatever reason, the programming side of this receiver has been a farcical affair led by a bunch of incompetent developers who have been told about fixes and workarounds by 3rd parties for mounts and recording et al, which have been met with silence and never incorprated them into the builds.
Technomate as a public facing base in North London have however been incredibly helpful and no doubt compensated people who actually make contact with them directly or put their minds at ease in some way. This however does not correct the fact that a product has been, and still is, sold in the UK under applicable trading laws. This is also unfortunately marred by the fact that an alleged employee of Technomate (supposedly the Director) registers on here as an alias who is supposed to be an impartial beta-tester who winds people up with his attitude and has a direct line to Technomate decisions.
For someone who has spent £250, and possibly £50 for the wi-fi adapter, on a product which still doesn't work, whilst mocking them for still complaining about it and telling them they can have a new publically untested receiver but still have to stump up approx £100 is completely inappropriate and alienating. Publically admitting 1 product out of 20 models is a failure, but "hey ho, take my word for it, you'll be happy" is not the solution.
Anyone wanting to contact Trading Standards has a right to do so. The history of this product is not as straight forward as citing written fact sheets regarding UK law. There would be enough user complaints to warrant a full investigation by TS and with the facts all publically documented I would not forsee anything going in Technomates favour.
Judging the public's response to all this, the only solution I would imagine that could rectify the problem and save what is left of TM's reputation is for someone OFFICIALLY from Technomate to post an apology on their website, admitting the problems and offering a straight swap for the new Twin when released, or a full refund, both upon return of TM800 and receipt of purchase. Also recommend your distributers to withdraw sale of the TM800 until is finished to a point that all specified functions work as to be expected by a FTA receiver.
Unfortunately I don't see that ever happening, specifically a public acknoledgment or fault and apology.
Reagarding DigitalWorldz, they clearly have no offical affiliation with Technomate or any other manufacturer. Their does however seem to be a feeling of unhappiness from users with how aliases are allowed to operate under the guise of free speech, and how some threads are removed instead of being pruned and promoted as warnings to prospective buyers. In recent weeks there has been a lot of users joined having been trapped by and asking about common pitfuls. There is no doubt that OTT rants and 'the usual trolling brigade' should be reprimanded appropriately with forum rules, and usually they are but it leaves other users really pissed of when their legitimate posts are culled because some others are fed up with reading rants.
As a buyer of TM800 you have the following options:
- contact Technomate directly and demand some kind of solution.
- contact Trading Standards with a level head and well presented argument - everything is documented on here if you can find it.
- cut your loses - ditch the TM800 and put it down to bad experience.
- do nothing and see how things turn out with TM's promise it'll be finished.
- feel free to calmy warn users about your experience with TM on appropriate threads, just as you would an opinion on any other product/manufacturer good or bad you've had experience with.