Aereo as we know it has effectively been put out of business. The United States Supreme Court on Wednesday sided with broadcasters who were suing Aereo for taking over-the-air broadcast signals and delivering them to your smartphone, tablet or laptop over your Internet connection. As SCOTUSblog informs us, the court’s 6-3 ruling “appears sweeping and definitive, determining that Aereo is illegal.” If Aereo wants to keep delivering broadcast networks’ shows to your Internet-connected devices, it will need to pay licensing fees to broadcasters.
In a last effort before its April 22nd hearing, Aereo is defending its service in a “media blitz,” as Re/code calls it, whose purpose is to better inform everyone that its business isn’t infringing on any copyright laws. The company will explain next week to the Supreme Court why its services are legal, in its view, and why they aren’t violating the copyright o broadcasters. More →
TV fans in Austin, Tex. are very lucky. Not only do they have Google Fiber and Time Warner Cable aggressively trying to win them over with faster speeds they can use to enjoy lag-free Netflix streams but they’re about to get Aereo in their fair city as well starting on March 3rd. Aereo, for those who don’t know, is a television streaming service that takes over-the-air broadcast signals and delivers them to your smartphone, tablet or laptop over your Internet connection. This means that you can use Aereo to watch over-the-air television even if you’re not at home in front of your television.
CBS is one of a number of broadcasters enraged that Internet TV startup Aereo is still in business. At one point, the company said that it would discontinue its over-the-air broadcasts if Aereo was permitted to keep operating. Aereo, as many will recall, allows users to stream TV to their computers and mobile devices for $8 per month, and it skirts standard licensing fees by pulling free TV transmissions out of the air with physical HD antennas and then piping them over the web. While broadcasters have sued the startup in an effort to shut it down, CBS CEO Leslie Moonves’s recent comments suggest he doesn’t think his company would really suffer at all if Aereo wins in court. More →
Aereo is either a brilliant online TV streaming service that could potentially revolutionize the television industry as we know it, or a dastardly thief profiting from what broadcasters claim amounts to stealing their services. The courts haven’t yet decided, but what we do know conclusively is that consumers love the idea of being able to stream all the TV programming they want to their PCs, smartphones and tablets for just $8 per month. For people in the New York area looking to cut the cord and give Aereo a try, however, we have some bad news: The service is now operating at capacity in New York City and can no longer accept new customers. More →
Despite a flurry of lawsuits, streaming television service Aereo is still online — but broadcasting companies aren’t done fighting quite yet. Bloomberg reports that the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal by several media companies (the list includes ABC, 21st Century Fox, NBCUniversal and CBS) that are determined to prove that Aereo is bad for the industry and that it violates copyright laws. The broadcasters believe that Aereo’s service has created a blueprint that, if followed by other pay TV companies, would allow cable providers to avoid paying licensing fees that are expected to total more than $4 billion in 2014. More →
If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em… and if your cohorts can’t crush ‘em in court, crush ‘em in the market. Aereo is a streaming television service that has made a lot of waves recently. The pay service allows subscribers in certain regions to stream a handful of channels to PCs, smartphones and tablets for $8 per month. And according to broadcasters, Aereo is stealing their content. Aereo is being sued by several broadcasters including CBS, which alleges that the company is stealing its content and transmitting it over the Internet to subscribers. Aereo has not yet been shut down by these suits, however, and now major service providers including DirecTV and Time Warner Cable are planning to launch similar services of their own in the event Aereo prevails in court, Bloomberg reports. More →
The idea of a la carte cable programming that would allow subscribers to pick and choose the stations they pay for is one that we have all dreamt of for years now. Some pay TV executives tease us from time to time and talk about how a la carte options might become available at some point in the future, but at least one CEO isn’t shy in stating that cable operators will never split up channel packages. “If you had to pay separately for just PBS, probably, sadly, not a majority of Americans would do that,” Comcast’s chief executive Brian Roberts told PBS in an interview. “So there’s many channels, whether it’s Discovery Channel or C-SPAN or many, many others, that just aren’t viable. You can’t just buy the sports section of The New York Times. You take the whole paper.” Roberts also noted that he believes pay TV streaming startup Aereo is breaking the law by stealing content and rebroadcasting it without permission. Comcast’s NBCUniversal is one of several broadcasters currently suing Aereo in an effort to have the service shut down.