New Simple.tv feature enables sharing of recorded shows

The major networks may have, at least for now, legally thwarted Aereo's attempt at redefining broadcast TV distribution. But disruptive technologies that threaten their business models--or at least their leverage against pay-TV companies in retransmission negotiations--keep on coming.

Simple.TV

Simple.TV's device attaches to an HD antenna or a ClearQAM cable. Users must provide their own antenna and storage. (Source: us.simple.tv)

Case in point is Simple.tv, the maker of an IP-based DVR that connects to users' home networks and pipes live and recorded shows to their notebook computers, iOS and Android mobile devices, and OTT devices like Roku.

Somehow, so far, the Tiburon, Calif.-based company has avoided the legal wrath of CBS chief Les Moonves and his disruption-unfriendly cohorts. But that could change with a new Simple.tv feature that allows users to share their recorded content with friends, family members and hangers-on over the Internet.

Speaking to GigaOm, Simple.tv CEO Mark Ely outlined his device's new capability, which lets users identify up to five "guests," letting each of them tap into their recorded DVR content remotely, provided they have the bandwidth.

Simple.tv has delivered on a consumer-friendly feature that DVR users have been fantasizing about for years. In fact, a recent Parks Associate survey found that 45 percent of pay-TV subscribers want a cloud-based DVR. But the company has also made it more difficult for broadcasters to count their viewers and ad impressions.

We'll see how long this goes on without a legal challenge ... but for now, broadcasters still seem concerned with destroying Aereo in court, even though the SVOD streaming service has suspended its operations and has told the court that its survival is in question.

On Monday, Aug. 18, the major broadcast networks took another swing at Aereo, asking the court for a broad, wide-ranging injunction that would permanently keep the service from streaming their signals. 

For more:
- read this Deadline Hollywood story
- read this GigaOm story

Related links:
Simple.tv gets $5.7 million to expand product
Judge strikes down Aereo's 'emergency' attempt to resume service
Parks: Over 45% of U.S. pay-TV subscribers want cloud-based DVR

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