Updated March 29, 2019: Added a quote from SiliconDust CEO Ted Head.
Less than six months after it launched, HDHomeRun Premium — the streaming arm of the company that still is an excellent option for over-the-air TV — is shutting down.
The following went out in an email to subscribers this afternoon:
We are writing to inform you that we will be ending the HDHomeRun Premium TV service over the course of the next 30 days. All individuals currently subscribed to Premium TV will be able to continue their service until their current month of service has concluded, at which time service will not be renewed.
We want to thank you for your business, and we want to assure you that we are not done innovating. We are excited about upcoming plans for improving the cord cutting and cord shaving experiences.
HDHomeRun already had been issuing credits after a number of channels inexplicably disappeared late last year, as part of an "upstream contract dispute."
On March 29, SiliconDust CEO Ted Head got back to us by email. He said:
"Silicondust has carefully considered our OTT offerings and have chosen to discontinue our service named Premium TV. We continue to support our existing and future customers with our Live TV and DVR products including upcoming models. Stay tuned for more information."
The shutdown isn't exactly unexpected, as Silicondust — the company behind HDHomeRun OTA boxes — had found itself caught in a bit of a pickle with the provider of the streaming channels, Omniverse OneWorld Television. And it's gone far beyond a "contract dispute."
In February, a federal lawsuit was filed against Omniverse, alleging that it didn't actually have the rights to distribute all of those channels. Silicondust was not listed as a defendant in the suit, though the future of HDHomeRun Premium most certainly was thrown into doubt.
"We can be indirectly affected by Omniverse not able to continue their service," CEO Ted Head wrote at the time, "and so we are in the process of finding out a way to best mitigate any potential interruptions to our service and will let our customers know as soon as we know if there will be any change to the current services."
Today, that change was come.
The best over-the-air antennas
Who doesn't like free TV, right? And it turns out that in 2018 there's still plenty to watch — free and legal — if you've got a decent enough over-the-air antenna. For the cost of a decent meal at the Sizzler you can get an antenna that pulls in stations from dozens of miles away, piping free 1080i content straight into your TV.
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