Detailed within a letter issued to all Aereo customers recently, the digital streaming media company has decided to immediately suspend service as of 11:30 EST today due to the Supreme Court decision about the legality of the service. Calling the move a “pause in operations,” all current Aereo customers will be issued a refund on the last paid month of service despite the month nearly coming to a close in a few days. According to details within the letter, Aereo CEO Chet Kanojia plans on consulting with the court in order to plan out the next steps for the company.
In addition to thanking customers for supporting the online video service on social media and other sites, Kanojia spoke a bit about the decision saying “The spectrum that the broadcasters use to transmit over the air programming belongs to the American public and we believe you should have a right to access that live programming whether your antenna sits on the roof of your home, on top of your television or in the cloud.” Kanojia then encouraged users to continue checking for updates on ProtectMyAntenna.org, a site set up by Aereo specifically to keep the public informed on the legality of the service.
At the suspension of Aereo’s operations, the company had approximately half a million subscribers paying between $8 to $12 a month to access an antenna in their home city. Generating between four to six million dollars of revenue per month for Aereo, customers paying for the service were able to watch live programming on their mobile devices when away from their home.
Customers could also access a digital video recording service that made recorded content available over the Internet. Interestingly, many cable companies have adopted a similar model of content accessibility on mobile devices over the past three years while Aereo was in operation in order to remain competitive.