I bought a Sony DVR/DVD player about four years ago. It booted up with a choice of EPGs - a plain one, and one with additional functionality and adverts. Yes, half the screen was occupied by ads. After getting annoyed with that after about two microseconds I switched to the plain one.
After a couple of years it started misbehaving, as these things do, telling me that the only thing on TV was 'No Channel Information'. So I thought I'd switch back and see how bad the ad-ridden one was. So I found the setting deep in the unexplored regions of the menu system and flipped.
Same old ad-ridden screen, except this time the ads were blank placeholders. I reckon nobody wanted to advertise there, since nobody was using the annoying EPG...
I did an upgrade from a new OS via a DVD from the Sony web site and it fixed most of the EPG blankness, but the thing has been pretty flakey from day one. I think the initial flakeyness is controlled to be just enough that you don't know if its your own fault for not reading the instructions or if it is genuine faults. Products are always released when the cost in fixing the bugs is more than the cost of handling support calls, right?
Anyway, no more Sony for me.