Friday, November 28, 2014

Aereo's final chapter - Broadcasters Picking its Bones

Aereo is the undisputed leader when it come to my favorite company to write about over the past couple of years. You will remember them as the ambitious startup that aimed to stream live broadcast television and offered cloud based DVR services to subscribers for a small monthly fee. Roll forward to this past Friday, months after the devastating loss they suffered in the Supreme Court, they filed for bankruptcy. Although this seemed to be the final chapter in their short lived history, it doesn’t have to end this way. While the courts ruled that Aereo’s business model ran afoul of copyright law, the underlying technology, which uses tiny antennas to stream video to subscribers, could still be very valuable. The reality is that Aereo only foreshadowed a massive industry shakeup that is changing everything about television.  As more people cut the cord and switch to on-demand services like Netflix and HBO Go, cable television (as we now know it) will slowly die out as will the lucrative retransmission fees they pay the broadcasters. Apparently I'm in good company with my prediction as Reed Hastings CEO Netflix has thrown down the gauntlet to the traditional television business, declaring it will be dead by 2030.

The latest news that has peaked my interest is this weeks comment from their Lawyers stating that there is "plenty of interest in the company’s assets" and asked the bankruptcy judge for an auction to be scheduled for Feb. 17. More: Bloomberg 11/24/14 - Aereo’s Assets Eyed by Possible Bidders, Lawyer Says

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