Broadcasters who are challenging Aereo‘s right to stream their programming to local viewers in New York City will have more to worry about soon. The fledgling company says that it will offer its service to more than 97M consumers by year’s end as it expands to 22 additional cities: Boston, Miami, Austin, Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Washington DC, Baltimore, Detroit, Denver, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Tampa, Cleveland, Kansas City, Raleigh-Durham (NC), Salt Lake City, Birmingham (AL), Providence (RI), and Madison (WI). The company calls it “the first phase” of its growth effort. It’s also being helped by an additional $38M in Series B funding led by Barry Diller’s IAC and Highland Capital Partners. Aereo subscribers can pay $1 a day, $8 a month or $80 a year to have their local broadcast TV signals streamed to them, as long as they’re in the local market. It also provides a DVR-like capability to record shows, and to pause, rewind and fast-forward. Beginning in late spring consumers in the served cities who want to try Aereo for free for an hour a day can apply on its website for an invitation. Aereo works on iPad, iPhone, Chrome, Internet Explorer 9, Firefox, Safari, Opera, AppleTV and Roku devices. While Aereo expands, broadcasters are suing the service claiming that it violates their copyrights by using their programming without their permission. Aereo says it simply enables customers to capture the over-the-air signals that they already transmit for free.
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