Somewhere across the vast reaches of social media (I can’t remember where) I came across a small but growing internet television service called Aereo that allows you to stream live television over the internet on any device or even to record up to two shows at once like you would with a DVR – for only about $80 per year. Imagine a roof antenna or rabbit ears on your TV that happened to be somewhere you never had to see them. Aereo makes that possible. Here’s how:
1. They’ve made the TV antenna unbelievably small
So small it fits on the tip of your finger. But it still gets awesome HD reception.
2. They’ve connected those antennas to the Internet
They designed a way to put tons of these antennas in data centers, along with massive amounts of storage and super-fast Internet connections.
3. They give you control of your own antenna
They’ve built a simple, elegant interface to let you control this antenna. With any device you want, over the internet. All without boxes, cables, or cords.
The company has been around for about one year now and is now expanding to 22 additional cities. Cable Television Distributors are of course fighting back against this potential disruption, but Aereo maintains that their solution is legal. The bigger questions though are:
- Is Aereo disruptive? Does it have the potential to make people switch?
(possibly when combined with Hulu and/or Netflix and Amazon Prime)
- Will Aereo be able to gain enough momentum to make cable television stations jump on board what might become part of an expanded premium offering?
What do you think?
UPDATE (2022): Eventually the cable companies won in court and Aereo was forced into bankruptcy where Tivo ended up buying them for $1 million. Sad but true. And now we have multiple offerings like YouTubeTV that have not been forced to cease operations – but at a much higher cost.
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