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CBS CEO Admits Streaming TV Service Aereo Isn't A Huge Threat Even Though The Two Companies Are Headed For A Supreme Court Battle

Les Moonves CEO CBS CorpJustin Sullivan/Getty ImagesCBS CEO Leslie Moonves

Broadcast networks have been at war with live TV streaming service Aereo since 2012, but CBS CEO Leslie Moonves admitted to investors and analysts last week during the company’s Q4 earnings call that he doesn’t consider the startup a threat.

Deadline reports that Moonves said “we’re not going to be financially handicapped at all” if Aereo wins in an upcoming case headed to the Supreme Court. In fact, Moonves said CBS has the option to create its own Aereo-like service.

Networks are suing Aereo because they say the startup doesn’t have the right to rebroadcast their signals over the Internet. Aereo provides each of its customers with a tiny antenna that pulls in over the air programming from networks like NBC, CBS, and ABC and beams them over the Internet to computers, smartphones, and tablets. It costs $US8 per month and is only available in a handful of U.S. cities.

In the past, network executives have threatened to stop broadcasting over the air for free if Aereo is allowed to continue.

The case has made its way to the Supreme Court. Hearings begin April 22.

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