Watching TV broadcasts on a television set? What will they think of next? Well, facetiousness aside, this may be one of the easiest and cheapest ways for people in markets served by Aereo — who don’t want to attach an antenna to their TVs — to access local TV broadcasts. It’s a meaningful development for Aereo: Google’s $35 Chromecast streaming devices have been a hit with consumers. They use smartphones or tablets to remotely control the thumb-sized unit that plugs into a TV set’s HDMI port, and picks up streaming video via WiFi. Beginning May 29, Aereo customers who use Chromecast can download or update their Aereo app, and they’ll be ready to go. “Consumers deserve more options and alternatives in how they watch television and our team is committed to providing consumers with the best experience possible using Aereo’s innovative cloud technology,” says CEO Chet Kanojia. His service will be ready for Chromecast at the same time U.S. Supreme Court justices will be deliberating whether Aereo is legal. Major broadcasters have asked the high court to rule that the service infringes on their copyrights; Aereo streams their over-the-air programming in their local markets, but doesn’t pay. The company says that it simply leases subscribers an antenna similar to what they could install at home to watch free TV.
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