Newbie says THANKS! And asks about

I started the “Newbie…Proposed System…TiVo” thread. WOW! Spectacular Responses! I am dazzled.

  • I ordered a Quad today, thanks to your comments.

So naturally I have another Q:

Does Tablo interface with, the company that streams the local networks in several cities, including Boston, 25 miles from me.

  • I am still working out how a lot of this stuff works, but it seems possible that that might be more convenient than connecting to an antenna (FWIW, “TV Fool” site showed I should get excellent reception for all the major stations, and all at 132° +/- 2°)


Tablo is a piece of hardware, with which you can watch and record local OTA channels from your antenna. Locast is a free streaming service. You can watch Locast on your Amazon Fire TV or Roku device, if you are in one of the cities in which they currently broadcast. Generally, you’ll get about eight or ten locals on Locast, depending upon your city … and of course, you’ll not be able to record any of them.

Uh, the Tablo does not work without an antenna!

In the wake of the Aero and FilmOn decisions, a new nonprofit service called Locast has arisen, retransmitting over-the-air TV signals to viewers through the internet. Founders of the service claim that a nonprofit service like this is legal under an exception to the Copyright Act provisions that blocked the Aereo and FilmOn services. The Locast service has not yet been challenged in court.

A Broadcaster’s Guide To Washington Issues

A major issue that will face court challenge is the “donation” required to actually watch TV. According to the The Verge:

The FAQ also cites Locast’s ability to charge a fee “necessary to defray the actual and reasonable costs” of providing the service. Technically, Locast doesn’t charge a fee — it asks for contributions of at least $5 per month. You do have the choice of not paying that “contribution” — but if you don’t, you’ll find Locast’s broadcasts practically unwatchable.

Locast review: free local programming with a catch

Bottom Line

The only way to legally watch local TV for free is to attach an antenna to your house.