Did the DirecTV Genie Delete Your Stuff?
I have found the DirecTV Genie commercials to be quite entertaining. However, there is the problem with the Genie. The claim is that DirecTV gives you UP TO 3 times more DVR space. After using her magic, the above DVR storage bar becomes this.
Impressive, right? I mean that is clearly A LOT more DVR space. Just like that – boom, more space.
Bring Out the Maths
Let me make the assumption that the first bar graph shows the ratio of used to unused space on the DVR. In this case, I can get a measurement of the used space by measuring the length of the red bar and the total bar.
First, for the “DVR IS FULL” picture. By measuring the pixel size, I get the used space is 98% of the total space. I can write that as:
Here I using s1 to represent the used space of the DVR and smax-1 is the total possible space in the first DVR. Now the Genie comes along. Poof. More storage. Let me assume that the same amount of space is used for recording, but the total possible space has increased to smax-2. If I measure the length of the red bar to the total bar length after Genie uses magic, I get only 8% of the space is used.
Again, assuming that the used space is same as before I can write an expression for the total space in the new DVR.
Now I can use both of these expressions and solve for the size of the second (bigger) DVR in terms of the size of the first DVR.
So, if the space bar is linearly related to the actual space then the Genie lied. The DirecTV Genie increased the space by over 12X not “up to 3X more storage”.
Maybe the Genie Was Right
You know I like to present both sides of the argument. What if the Genie has to follow the ultimate Genie Code of Honor that says “A Genie Shall Not Lie”? Can I come up with a situation where she is not lying? What if the Genie did two things with her magic? What if she increased the size of the DVR by “up to” 3X AND at the same time, deleted all of those dumb shows no one watches on that are just sitting on the DVR? How much of the recorded stuff would she have to delete?
Assumption number 1: the new DVR is 3 times the size of the old one. Yes, I know the commercial says “up to 3X” – but I say you should either go big or go home. There is no assumption number 2.
Here, I will introduce a new variable, s2. This is the amount of stuff left on the new and improved DVR. Now, I can write the two space equations as:
That would mean the Genie deleted over 75% of the stuff on the DVR. I hope she only deleted dumb shows like Sponge Bob. Sorry, it’s true. I’m not a big fan of Sponge Bob.
So maybe she deleted some stuff. Or maybe she thinks you can’t handle the truth. I guess I should fix the image for her, right? This is what it should look like.
Come on, DirecTV. Do the right thing. Fix your commercials or stop the Genie from deleting my shows. Either way, something has to be fixed.