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Indian-American takes on US television industry

The TV industry titans are intent on maintaining a system that provides billions in revenue annually.

An Indian American entrepreneur has developed a tiny antenna which grabs over-the-air television signals and streams them to consumers via Internet, an invention that has pitted him against the powerful US TV industry.

Chet Kanojia, whose company is emerging as a threat to broadcast networks like ABC, NBC and CBS, is now fighting a legal battle with them in the US Supreme Court.
Aereo allows subscribers to watch or record broadcast TV through Internet on any device, no wires or cable boxes required. It does this by assigning each consumer a remote antenna and DVR.

The TV industry titans are intent on maintaining a system that provides billions in revenue annually. The networks have been fighting Aereo in court almost since its inception, claiming the service was stealing their content. The Supreme Court will hear the case later this month, a report in the New York Times said.

“The (court) decision will have far-reaching implications for a television industry already in upheaval, facing challenges from online streaming, Internet-enabled TVs, ad-skipping devices and, now, the tiny antennas that Aereo uses to capture broadcast signals,” the report said.

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Kanojia says he is optimistic of a Supreme Court ruling in his favour. “I can’t imagine they won’t be on the side of innovation,” he says, “cloud-based innovation, in particular, as it is so consumer-friendly.”

First published on: 21-01-2014 at 12:55:09 am
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