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How A Miniature Antenna Is Turning The TV Biz On A Dime


A TV antenna the size of a dime. That's it below, on the right. Long gone are the days of the RCA console television in your grandparent's (or great grandparent's) living room with two silver rods jutting out at all angles as you squint through the "snow" to catch a glimpse of Looney Tunes.

Thanks to high speed Internet connections and cloud computing, Aereo is disrupting the traditional TV and cable business like very few.

Netflix, iTunes, Hulu and Amazon Prime may have millions of subscribers for their on-demand TV shows and movies, but you are in the dark if you want to watch your local television news and shows.

That's one place Aereo hopes to make its mark as it launched in Miami this month.  

The business model, according to CEO Chet Kanojia, is pretty efficient. He claims at $8 per month for a subscription, he easily can turn a profit in a market like South Florida with fewer than 10,000 customers. After all, the price of technology, cloud computing capacity and digital video storage has continued to fall. And he's getting his content for free.

Therein lies the controversy. Big television station owners like Disney, CBS and others have sued to stop the service in other cities. So far they have been unsuccessful and Aereo keeps deploying its dime-sized antennas.

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