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With the Justices of the US Supreme Court deliberating on the evidence provided in the copyright case brought by the nation’s major broadcast networks against Internet TV streaming service Aereo, USB streaming dongle Rabbit TV has unveiled a similar feature added to its popular eMedia guide, giving its three million+ users easy access to nearly 100 live TV stations over the web, including popular US stations such as The CW, PBS, Ion, Univision, Telemundo, This, and MeTV.
The offering also incorporates international channels such as Eurosport, RT, and ZDF, along with popular news, shopping and variety channels such as Bloomberg, MSNBC, QVC, HSN, and various others. Rabbit TV all of these channels are already accessible via the web – the company is simply aggregating and offering these channels via various affiliate providers.
FreeCast, Rabbit TV’s operating company, sees the online availability of this live broadcast content as a major move in the right direction for broadcasters and the media industry in general. The company asserts that services such as Aereo should not be necessary, as the major networks should be going online themselves instead of missing the massive revenue opportunity from over 10 million US web users who don’t subscribe to cable. “An even larger opportunity has been demonstrated in the global market with web audiences around the world seeking high quality scheduled content online,” says the company.
It notes that some networks are already setting the base for the shift to the web, including MSNBC, QVC, CW, PBS and others, along with VoD offerings from major networks such as ABC, NBC, CBS, and FOX, but FreeCast views this as merely the beginning. “Before long the networks will all move online, and Rabbit TV is positioning itself to become the universal aggregation point for all live, VoD and pay per view content available over the web globally,” it confirms.
“When people talk about live TV, aside from sporting events and award shows, what they’re really talking about is scheduled programming – much like a playlist on the web. Now we’re looking at scheduled programming as boundless and limitless, because it can be watched via the web all over the world. What’s happening now is that Aereo is forcing the networks to go online, which will in turn drive cable companies to become primarily bandwidth providers, and the economics will shift in that direction,” says FreeCast CEO William Mobley.
The company plans for these live TV stations to work hand-in-hand with its newly launched original content network, which will bring together niche content providers and networks from around the world to create hundreds of 24/7 scheduled programming channels through Rabbit TV’s web-based guide. This news comes just weeks after FreeCast’s original content and global networks announcement at the NAB Show in early April.