Currently 3rd party CableCARD devices hosts can't get certified by CableLabs for bi-directional (CC 2.0) uses, but it isn't the hardware that is holding up the works, but the standard. The CEA and NCTA just can't come to an agreement about what should be required for bi-directional certification. According to Mark, the reason is complicated, and his understanding is that it has a lot to do with OCAP. If we had to guess, we'd say that the CEA is on our side, but honestly we just don't know. Until this happens, it means no VOD or SDV for CableCARD host devices -- like the TiVo Series3.
One of the other questions we had for Mark, is why are there are so many problems with CableCARDs? He said that Motorola has done a lot to help make them work; not only have they worked with CE manufactures to work out the bugs, but they have even sold head-ends and CableCARDs so they could set up their own labs. In the end it seems that most manufactures have stopped shipping TVs with CableCARD slots, and while no one really seems to know why; we still think it's to reduce the number of customer support calls caused from the cable companies blaming the manufacturer for all the problems. We don't know about anyone elses experience, but in ours, we can tell you that the cable company did whatever it could to convince us not to use a CableCARD.
One thing is for sure, the FCC isn't ready to give up on the OpenCable dream just yet; let's just hope they intervene and get bi-directional CableCARD host support for everyone sooner, rather than later.