Category Archives: Broadcast TV

Test Your Knowledge with Ten Questions on the History of TV

Here at Aereo we love antennas and we love TV. We thought it would be fun to come up with a quiz to test your general TV knowledge. Check it out!

True or False?

  1. Broadcast Television is programming or signals sent over the airwaves for public access.
  2. By 1953, 50% of American homes had a television.
  3. In 1975 Sony introduced Betamax, the first home VCR.
  4. The first national broadcast televised in color was the 1954 Tournament of Roses Parade.
  5. Since 2009 TV stations have been required to broadcast exclusively in a digital format.
  6. The first television station to broadcast a digital TV signal is located in Raleigh, NC.
  7. Many television networks evolved from radio networks.
  8. Television broadcasts both AM and FM.
  9. Nearly 54 million Americans currently watch TV using an antenna.
  10. You can record and watch live broadcast TV online with an Aereo antenna and DVR by going to aereo.com.

 

 

Fun Fact: All the answers to the quiz above are True! How did you score?

Austinites! Choose How You Access Live Broadcast TV

The city that’s mastered the live music scene deserves to choose how it accesses live TV, too. Forget the cables, the clutter, and the long-term commitment. Starting March 3rd, you’ll be able to record and stream broadcast TV using your own remote antenna and cloud-based DVR. You can watch your recordings live and you can save them for later. You shouldn’t have to choose between that cover band show on 6th street or watching the game. Now, you can have it all – anywhere, anytime.

With Aereo, you can control your own remote antenna and cloud-based DVR to access over-the-air broadcast signals using many Internet-connected devices that you may already have. Record and watch your favorite shows straight to and from the cloud – experience TV the way it should be.

Pre-register now to be the first to enjoy Aereo in Austin. Check here to see if your home ZIP code is in our coverage area.

STATEMENT FROM AEREO CEO AND FOUNDER CHET KANOJIA

New York, NY (January 10, 2014) – The United States Supreme Court today issued an order granting the petition for a writ of certiorari in the matter of American Broadcasting Companies, Inc., et al., v. Aereo, Inc. Below is a statement from Aereo CEO and Founder Chet Kanojia:

“We said from the beginning that it was our hope that this case would be decided on the merits and not through a wasteful war of attrition. We look forward to presenting our case to the Supreme Court and we have every confidence that the Court will validate and preserve a consumer’s right to access local over-the-air television with an individual antenna, make a personal recording with a DVR, and watch that recording on a device of their choice.

“This case is critically important not only to Aereo, but to the entire cloud computing and cloud storage industry. The landmark Second Circuit decision in Cablevision provided much needed clarity for the cloud industry and as a result, helped foster massive investment, growth and innovation in the sector. The challenges outlined in the broadcasters’ filing make clear that they are using Aereo as a proxy to attack Cablevision itself and thus, undermine a critical foundation of the cloud computing and storage industry.

“We believe that consumers have a right to use an antenna to access over-the-air television and to make personal recordings of those broadcasts. The broadcasters are asking the Court to deny consumers the ability to use the cloud to access a more modern-day television antenna and DVR. If the broadcasters succeed, the consequences to consumers and the cloud industry are chilling.

“We remain unwavering in our confidence that Aereo’s technology falls squarely within the law and our team will continue to work hard to provide our consumers with best-in-class technology that delights and adds meaningful value to their lives.”



Background on Aereo

Aereo is currently available to residents in the following markets: New York City, Boston, Atlanta, Miami, Salt Lake City, Houston, Dallas, Denver, Detroit and Baltimore. Aereo’s innovative remote (cloud-based) antenna/DVR technology makes watching television simple and user-friendly. Using Aereo’s technology, consumers can pause and rewind any program that they are watching live, or save a program for future viewing.

Aereo membership begins at $8 per month, for access to Aereo’s cloud-based antenna/DVR technology and 20 hours of DVR storage. For an additional $4, consumers can upgrade their membership and receive 60 hours of DVR storage for a total of $12 per month. Consumers who join Aereo will get their first of month of access for free. Aereo’s technology works on ‘smart’ devices from tablets to phones to laptop computers. Aereo is currently supported on iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch. The Aereo app for Android™ (currently in beta) is available for download for devices running Android operating system version 4.1 or higher. Aereo is also supported on Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer 9, Firefox, Opera, AppleTV (via airplay) and Roku platforms.

To learn more about Aereo’s technology please, visit Aereo.com.

For media inquiries:
Virginia Lam, Aereo, Inc.
vlam@aereo.com
press@aereo.com

LaunchSquad for Aereo
aereo@launchsquad.com
(212) 564-3665

Aereo Announces Additional Financing Round

Additional $34 million investment will support Aereo’s rapid nationwide expansion

New York, NY (January 7, 2014) – Aereo, Inc., today announced that it has closed a $34 million Series C round of financing. The new round of financing will support Aereo’s rapid nationwide expansion and increased investments in hiring and technology.  IAC was joined by iconic media investor Gordon Crawford and Himalaya Capital Management, as well as existing investors Highland Capital Partners, FirstMark Capital and others for this additional round of funding.  Crawford, a media and entertainment industry veteran, is one of the industry’s most influential and successful investors, having worked at Capital Research and Management for 41 years. Himalaya Capital Management is led by global investor and human rights activist Li Lu.

Today’s announcement will be made by Aereo’s CEO and Founder, Chet Kanojia, at the Citi Global Internet, Media & Telecommunications Conference in Las Vegas.  To listen to a live stream of the event, click here. The audio stream will begin on January 8 at 9:45am PST.

“Aereo experienced tremendous growth in 2013 and we expect 2014 to be another blockbuster year,” said Aereo CEO and Founder Chet Kanojia. “Last year at this time, Aereo was launched in only New York City.  Today, Aereo is available in 10 markets and will grow to 15 by the end of the quarter. In 2013, we also launched our first native app for Android, made improvements to enhance the user experience and more than doubled our employee headcount. Consumers are craving choice and options and as a result, we continue to see explosive growth across all our markets.

“Aereo has scaled very quickly in 365 days and this additional funding will allow us to maintain this rapid pace of growth. We are thrilled to have a world-class group of investors who believe innovative, cloud-based technologies, like Aereo, are the future,” said Kanojia.

Aereo is currently available to residents in the following markets: New York City, Boston, Atlanta, Miami, Salt Lake City, Houston, Dallas, Denver, Detroit and Baltimore.  Aereo’s innovative remote (cloud-based) antenna/DVR technology makes watching television simple and user-friendly.  Using Aereo’s technology, consumers can pause and rewind any program that they are watching live, or save a program for future viewing.

Aereo membership begins at $8 per month, for access to Aereo’s cloud-based antenna/DVR technology and 20 hours of DVR storage. For an additional $4, consumers can upgrade their membership and receive 60 hours of DVR storage for a total of $12 per month.  Consumers who join Aereo will get their first of month of access for free.  Aereo’s technology works on ‘smart’ devices from tablets to phones to laptop computers.  Aereo is currently supported on iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch. The Aereo for Android app (currently in beta) is available for download for devices running Android operating system version 4.1 or higher.  Aereo is also supported on Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer 9, Firefox, Opera, AppleTV (via airplay) and Roku platforms.

To learn more about Aereo’s technology please, visit Aereo.com. 

For media inquiries:

Virginia Lam, Aereo, Inc.

vlam@aereo.com

press@aereo.com

LaunchSquad for Aereo

aereo@launchsquad.com

(212) 564-3665

 

Best Wishes for a Streaming New Year!

Let’s make this year even better than the last with some resolutions.

If you’re looking to clear some of the clutter in the New Year, consider signing up for Aereo. With all the hardware in the cloud, your home needs less stuff collecting dust for you to access Live TV.

And, if you’re looking to make some thrifty financial decision to kick off the new year– consider Aereo as an affordable way to record and stream live television.

Come give Aereo a try!

 

Happy New Year!

-Your Friends at Aereo

Happy New Year from Aereo

Statement from our CEO & Founder Chet Kanojia

Aereo today released the following statement from our Founder and CEO Chet Kanojia regarding the company’s brief filed today in the U.S. Supreme Court:

“We have decided to not oppose the broadcasters’ petition for certiorari before the United States Supreme Court. While the law is clear and the Second Circuit Court of Appeals and two different federal courts have ruled in favor of Aereo, broadcasters appear determined to keep litigating the same issues against Aereo in every jurisdiction that we enter. We want this resolved on the merits rather than through a wasteful war of attrition.

“The long-standing landmark Second Circuit decision in Cablevision has served as a crucial underpinning to the cloud computing and cloud storage industry.  The broadcasters’ filing makes clear that they are using Aereo as a proxy to attack Cablevision itself.

“Aereo provides to consumers antenna and DVR technology. With Aereo, a consumer tunes an individual, remotely located antenna and makes personal recordings on a cloud DVR.  The Aereo technology is functionally equivalent to a home antenna and DVR, but it is an innovation that provides convenience and ease to the consumer. The plaintiffs are trying to deny consumers the ability to use a more modern antenna and DVR by trying to prevent a consumer’s access to these technologies via the cloud.

“Consumers have the right to use an antenna to access the over-the-air television. It is a right that should be protected and preserved and in fact, has been protected for generations by Congress. Eliminating a consumer’s right to take advantage of innovation with respect to antenna technology would disenfranchise millions of Americans in cities and rural towns across the country.

“We are unwavering in our belief that Aereo’s technology falls squarely within the law and we look forward to continuing to delight our customers.”

Download press release.

 

People have enjoyed the right to access over-the-air broadcast television…

using an antenna for over 70 years. The broadcast networks have been granted free and valuable broadcast spectrum worth billions of dollars in exchange for their commitment to act in the public interest. It’s a sweet deal: the broadcasters get their free spectrum from the public and make money on advertising to fund their programming; the public enjoys high quality entertainment with their TV or rooftop antenna.

Along the way, cable and satellite providers entered the picture. In addition to free spectrum and advertising revenues, the networks got very lucrative retransmission fees from these providers. And so, for many, broadcast television is now offered in expensive fixed bundles or packages. Yet many millions of Americans continue to use antennas to get broadcast TV.

The approach at Aereo is to make the old-fashioned TV antenna easier to use, creating a platform that gives more choice to consumers. Aereo provides consumers with a remote individual antenna and DVR “in the cloud.” Instead of climbing on your roof or playing with rabbit ears on your TV, you can simply log in to a website and easily use your antenna and DVR through the Internet to watch TV on any device.

The broadcast networks have taken this to court, but the courts have twice ruled in favor of Aereo. And now in direct response to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruling in Aereo’s favor on April 1st, a representative of a broadcast network threatened to stop making certain broadcast channels available to the consumer over-the-air and called the use of Aereo’s antenna technology “piracy.”

About 54 million Americans use some sort of antenna to watch TV. This is not piracy. This has been part of the American way since the beginning of broadcasting.

At Aereo we believe in innovation, we believe in giving consumers choice, and frankly, we love our tiny antennas. Our passion is to make our technology enhance the way people experience television. We think we’re on to something really important here. And we hope you will come visit us at Aereo.com.

Innovation, Progress and Consumer Choice

A few year-end thoughts from Aereo’s Founder and CEO, Chet Kanojia

Major broadcast companies are trying very hard to put Aereo out of business.  But, the dispute goes far beyond the fate of one company.  What is at stake is whether a consumer’s right to access broadcast television for free, via an antenna and to record that content for private use, is still meaningful.  If consumers cannot take advantage of current and innovative technology, that right becomes hollow.

There are certain things we take for granted as Americans. One of those things is free access to over-the-air broadcast television and the ability to record and watch our programs.   If you are of a certain age, you used to rely on a TV antenna propped on your roof or TV.  Then along came the VCR, which transformed the consumer television experience.  We could now record a show for our private viewing. Then, the DVR enabled us not only to make recordings, but also to pause, rewind and fast-forward live television. And, in recent years, a DVR in the cloud became available.

But continued innovation to preserve television access for consumers is in jeopardy.

Consumers have the right to access broadcast television for free via an antenna because the public owns the airwaves.  Use of that valuable spectrum is licensed by the public to the broadcasters with the obligation that broadcasters must operate in the “public interest, convenience, and necessity.”

In exchange for the license we grant to broadcasters, we’re entitled to free access to broadcast television. In fact, Congress believed so strongly in maintaining free access that in 2007, they granted substantial subsidies for converter boxes for millions of homes to continue to receive over-the-air broadcasts after the change from analog to digital.  The crucial question is: Will the requirement that the broadcasters use the spectrum licensed to them by the public for the “public interest, convenience, and necessity” be enforced? Or will they be permitted to use the publicly owned airwaves to enhance their business interests, while frustrating consumer choice and access.

Unfortunately, every time new technology emerges, so do attempts to block those innovations. Our right to record television for private home viewing was the result of an epic copyright battle between certain television production studios and broadcasters and Sony Corporation of America, then maker of the “Betamax” VCR.    Studios and broadcasters vigorously opposed the right of individual consumers to record and watch television programming. In 1984, the Supreme Court resolved that battle and held that a consumer had a “fair use” right under the Copyright Act to make and view those private copies.  But for that case, today every consumer would be paying broadcasters each and every time they made a copy of Modern Family or the Super Bowl on their home DVR.   More than 20 years later, major broadcasters again tried to stop consumers from having access to remote DVR storage, but again failed in that effort.

If consumers have a right to access over-the-air broadcasts and to record and view those broadcasts for their own use, what’s the problem?  Unfortunately, several obstacles stand in the way.

First, in view of cable and satellite dominance of the market, many consumers have simply forgotten that they have the right and ability to access broadcast television for free using conventional home equipment.  This is especially true when what would otherwise be free broadcast television is often offered only in a high-cost “bundle” with non-broadcast channels. Consumers should be entitled to buy whatever they want, and for those who can’t afford it, or don’t want to subsidize other programming, they should have an alternative. Today, consumers have no real choice or voice in this equation.

Second, the television technology available to consumers has not kept pace with other technology advances.  Consumers today expect to access media from the “cloud” using Internet-connected devices such as smartphones, tablets and computers, and they expect ease and convenience.  If consumers are confined to outdated technology, the right to access broadcast television that is the quid pro quo for the spectrum license granted to the broadcasters is utterly meaningless.

At Aereo, we had a simple idea: to modernize access to broadcast television. We set out to make it easy for consumers to use that same combination of home equipment – an antenna, a DVR and a media streamer – but do it remotely, in the cloud with no boxes or wires.   Each consumer using Aereo can use their own Internet-enabled device – such as a tablet, smartphone, laptop, or Internet connected television – to access a remotely located individual antenna, DVR and media streamer, to record and watch broadcast television. It is simple and efficient and allows consumers to pick the device of their choice to access television.

Unfortunately, as with the Betamax in the 1980s and the Cablevision remote DVR earlier in this decade, the broadcasters have mounted a frontal attack on Aereo alleging copyright infringement.  All of the major broadcasters sued Aereo in the federal district court in New York.  They sought an injunction, but the trial judge denied it.  Now, the broadcasters have appealed that decision to the federal appellate court in the Second Circuit and Aereo awaits that decision.   It is telling that one of the major arguments that the broadcasters have advanced against Aereo is that it has somehow done something improper by intentionally designing its system to precisely follow existing copyright law.   It is a sad and troubling state of affairs if a company could be penalized for simply following the law.

An Aereo win is a consumer win. The broadcasters should be held to their obligation to use the spectrum licensed to them by the public, to operate in the “public interest, convenience, and necessity.”

Baseball & Live Broadcast TV

Over the years, broadcast television has played a tremendous role in expanding our access to sports. It has helped to broaden audiences and bring sports, like baseball, directly into the homes of millions of people across the country, played a role in increasing the fan base of the sport, and even affecting the game times.

How did it all begin? Let’s break down some major milestones:

The First Televised Professional Baseball Game
It happened on August 26, 1939 on the New York station then known as W2XBS, and was broadcast from  Ebbets Field in Brooklyn.

More TVs, More Eyeballs, Drives More People to the Ballpark
By 1948, professional baseball game ballpark attendance reached a record high of 21 million. How did TV contribute to this? With televisions becoming more accessible and more common over time, more baseball teams began televising games. Televising games yielded new fans, sparking more interest among them to experience games in person at the ballpark.

First Instant Replay
The first instant replay may have occurred on July 17, 1959, during a broadcast of a game by a local New York station. The videotape replay came showed a hit, which ended a no-hitter.

When Day Games Became Night Games
On October 13, 1971, a baseball championship game was played for the first time at night.  League management  believed that most baseball fans were either in school or working during the afternoons, when most baseball games were played. It was a huge success, and baseball ratings shot through the roof. From then on, nearly all weekday baseball games would be played at night. The first regular season night game occurred on May 24, 1935.

Flash Forward
The game has changed even further with internet accessibility and even more TV networks airing the sport. Now, with games available on broadcast TV through technologies such as mobile internet-connected devices, how will this affect the game for the next generation?

Play Ball!