AT&T Integrates Locast Into DIRECTV and U-Verse Platforms, Following Similar Integration By DISH in January
AT&T announced a deal to bring Locast to DIRECTV and U-verse platforms starting today. Non-profit local streaming service, Locast, which offers free live streaming of local channels in nine markets, already offers support on Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, iOS, and Android.
This isn’t the first partnership with a major satellite company for Locast. In January, DISH partnered with Locast to launch on their Hopper and Wally receivers. The move comes as cable, satellite, and streaming companies have seen ever increasing retransmission fees for carrying local affiliates. Services like Sling TV have stopped carrying most locals, as they cost $10-15/month to carry, for channels that customers could get for free with an antenna.
- New York
- Washington DC
Many use the service to supplement other Live TV Streaming Services link Philo or Sling TV which have limited local channels as part of their service. Locast is offered by non-profit Sports Fan Coalition New York which serves as a digital translator, meaning that Locast.org operates just like a traditional broadcast translator service, except instead of using an over-the-air signal to boost a broadcaster’s reach, they stream the signal over the Internet to consumers located within select US cities. This is the legal loophole that the non-profit uses to offer streaming for free.
The service is similar to Aereo, which was launched in 2012, but shut down through a Supreme Court decision in 2014. The main difference being that the service was for-profit and offered a DVR service for the content.
In all markets, Locast offers ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, The CW, as well as other broadcast channels like Telemundo, Univision, PBS, and independent stations. Since it is a non-profit, it has asked users for donations and has been using the market providing the most funding to decide which to launch into next.