Cable Companies Are Gaining Broadband, Losing Pay-TV Subscribers

By 04/06/2015
Cable Companies Are Gaining Broadband, Losing Pay-TV Subscribers

Last month, a Wall Street analyst found about 1.4 million U.S. households that usually would’ve subscribed to cable TV went without the service in 2014. Now, a new report confirms the growing trend of cord-cutting. Leichtman Research Group found cable companies are gaining more U.S. broadband subscribers, but are at the same time losing pay-TV subscribers.

As reported by Business Insider, Leichtman collected data from select cable providers (who were not identified) on the number of internet subscribers and pay-TV subscribers the providers boasted over the last few years. The research firm found that in the first quarter of 2014, cable providers had roughly the same amount of internet and pay-TV subscribers (50.3 million and 50.4 million respectively). But by the last quarter, pay-TV subscribers had dropped to 49.3 million, and broadband users had risen to 52 million.


Many traditional media companies have noticed these changes in the pay-TV industry and taken preemptive actions to stay relevant to today’s media consumers. CBS, for example, launched its All-Access subscription service for die-hard fans of the Eye network. Even pay-TV cable provider Dish Network introduced a subscription service aimed specifically at cord-cutters and cord-nevers (though that service appears to have a subscriber cap).


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But despite the changing nature of traditional media consumption, some analysts believe cable companies will survive the no-pay-TV trend by simply swapping their entire focus to internet services. The recent data from Leichtman supports this theory, and cable companies who are relying on pay-TV subscribers would do well to pay attention to Leichtman’s findings.

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