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Aereo Comes To Boston

In this Thursday, Dec. 20, 2012, photo, Chet Kanojia, founder and CEO of Aereo, Inc., shows a tablet displaying his company's technology, in New York. Aereo is one of several startups created to deliver traditional media over the Internet without licensing agreements. Past efforts have typically been rejected by courts as copyright violations. In Aereo’s case, the judge accepted the company’s legal reasoning, but with reluctance. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

In this Thursday, Dec. 20, 2012, photo, Chet Kanojia, founder and CEO of Aereo, Inc., shows a tablet displaying his company’s technology, in New York. Aereo is one of several startups created to deliver traditional media over the Internet without licensing agreements. Past efforts have typically been rejected by courts as copyright violations. In Aereo’s case, the judge accepted the company’s legal reasoning, but with reluctance. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

Beginning tomorrow, Boston residents will have another option that gives them “what they want, when they want it”… at least with network television.

It’s called Aereo. The premise is simple. Aereo uses an array of antennas to pull broadcast signals for free out of the air… then allows online subscribers to watch those channels on any internet device they choose, plus use Aereo’s built-in DVR function as well.

Guests

Chet Kanojia, founder and CEO of Aereo.

Hiawatha Bray, tech columnist for the Boston Globe.


Other stories from this show:

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  • 1960sDJ

    It’s unfortunate that some people think that after U.S. broadcast TV went all-digital in 2009 and their old analog TV sets went to static, that they must subscribe to cable, satellite, or some sort of internet service such as this (Aereo is NOT free after brief trial periods) to watch TV. I get 36 Boston, Central MA, and Rhode Island channels actually for free (more than will be provided in Boston with Aereo) with an indoor HDTV antenna on an HDTV here in Somerville, and I would get even more if I installed a roof antenna. If you want the luxury of local TV through your portable internet device (laptop, tablet, Smartphone, etc…) I could see paying for this service, but a portable HDTV that you can carry around with you should get all the stations for free in most locations in the area that are provided by paying for the Aereo service.

  • A.

     Maybe this wouldn’t be in such demand if the digital broadcast signals actually worked. I have not been able to get the “free” network channels at all since the switch to digital came a couple of years ago, and I live in a major city, not out in the middle of nowhere. A lot of people lost access to content that had been free for decades.

    • 1960sDJ

      What are you using for an antenna, and are you using an HDTV (or and HDTV converter box)?

      • A.

        I don’t know the brand of antenna–I got rid of it because it didn’t work well. I just have a regular, low price point TV. With the old signal, it was sometimes fuzzy, and I couldn’t get all the channels, but I could basically watch shows. Now the signal is so weak that it freezes and breaks up every couple of seconds and makes it so that watching anything is impossible.

        • 1960sDJ

          I get 36 channels for free here in Somerville MA, a few miles outside Boston, with an indoor HDTV antenna on an HDTV. All Boston and Central MA channels, and two from RI. Some break up once in a while, but I reposition the antenna differently for different channels and they clear up. If signals are weak in your area, you may need an antenna with a booster if you didn’t have one, but the booster actually worsens reception where I am from overloading. I did lose fuzzy reception of NH stations and other RI stations from the old analog, but I still receive plenty of channels. I use one of these: http://www.terk.com/indoor-tv-antennas/?sku=HDTVA

          • thinknoonchi

            We get something along the lines of 48 channels free over the air being pulled in from a standard antenna on the roof about 25 miles from Boston. This includes NH versions of some (like ABC, PBS, etc) and also includes something like 15 Spanish language only stations. I believe “A.” may not have a converter or a digital TV. If he/she does have a converter or a digital TV then I would suspect that a bad quality splitter is being used or the signal is being degraded in another way. Try running a wire directly from the antenna to the TV (or converter first if its not a digital TV)

  • Kathy

    Over the air TV should be free to do with what we want. That should be part of the social contract for using the airwaves.

    In terms of a la carte, it’s easy enough to do that now by purchasing by the show through Amazon or Vudu. 

    In terms of unbundling channels, people make the assumption that if there’s a hundred channels and they pay $100 that each channel would be a dollar. That’s extremely incorrect. Some would become ludicrously expensive: ESPN is $5/month and about 20% of subs watch it at least once a month. That means it would need to be $25/month if it was offered a la carte. 

  • http://profiles.google.com/barry.kort Barry Kort

    Why can’t I just procure one of those dime-sized antennas and hook it up directly to my HDTV?

    (By the way, Meghna, I’m currently using a conventional antenna that I hand-built from a couple of pieces of Romex electrical wire, each bent into a V-shape geometry, per this design.)

    • James

      How’s the reception on your iPad or iPhone? Not so good, I’d bet. And are you getting a DVR capability with your free antenna? Umm, I didn’t think so. For $8/month … yep :)

      • 1960sDJ

         If you want the luxury of local TV through your portable internet device (laptop, tablet, smartphone, etc…) I could see paying for this service, but to just watch local TV on the go for free, a portable HDTV that you can carry around with you should get all the stations for free in most locations that are provided by paying for the Aereo service. And, you can get a DVR for a one-time payment for the unit, and hook it up to any HDTV.

      • http://profiles.google.com/barry.kort Barry Kort

        I don’t own any mobile devices.  I only watch broadcast TV on conventional TV sets at home. I do have a VCR, but I rarely record anything.

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