The new rate schedule eliminates a low-priced option for those who want the streaming video service for at least a year. But Aereo says that by getting rid of daily and yearly pricing for new customers, it is simplifying the rate structure. New subscribers in New York and, beginning on Wednesday, in Boston can pay $8 a month for unlimited streaming of local broadcast station programming and 20 hours of remote DVR storage, or $12 for 60 hours of storage. That’s an improvement for those paying $12 a month. They currently can store up to 40 hours. Current subscribers with that plan will be bumped up to 60 hours. The company also says that new subscribers’ first month of service comes free — they can cancel at any time during the month — and there’s no long-term commitment. Yet Aereo is ditching an $80 a year plan with 40 hours of storage, and $1 a day with three hours. Current Aereo members can keep their existing rates until the membership period ends. “We looked at our data and it was clear, consumers want a more simple approach to pricing,” says Aereo CEO Chet Kanojia. Aereo streams to devices including the iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, AppleTV (via airplay) and Roku as well as units that run Chrome, Internet Explorer 9, Firefox, Safari, and Opera. Major broadcasters have sued Aereo saying that it violates their copyrights by re-selling their programming without paying them. Aereo says that it merely leases antenna and streaming services that consumers already can use to watch over-the-air TV for free.
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