While some analysts believe the cable and satellite TV sector is holding its own, Pew Research has new information which implies otherwise. The research firm’s recent “Home Broadband 2015” study discovered 24% of American adults don’t subscribe to a cable or satellite TV service.

Pew interviewed 2,001 adults aged 18 and over across the 50 States and the District of Columbia for its “Home Broadband 2015” study. Of the 24% of adults who don’t subscribe to cable or TV, 15% of these respondents said this is because they’ve cancelled their service (i.e. they became cord-cutters), while another 9% had never subscribed in the first place (i.e. cord-nevers). A whopping 71% of all study participants said the cost of cable and satellite TV was why they don’t subscribe, and 64% said they prefer to watch content online or via a traditional TV antenna.

According to the study results, Pew found young adults are the most likely candidates for cord-cutting, a phenomenon backed up by other 2015 studies of millennials’ TV-viewing habits. Out of the participating adults aged 18 to 29 in Pew’s study, 19% of them cancelled their satellite or cable subscriptions in 2015. Another 16% were cord-nevers, having never signed up for any sort of pay-TV service before.


Pew’s research echoes that of other firms’ studies over the course of the last year. For starters, MoffettNathanson analyst Craig Moffett found roughly 1.4 million Americans either cancelled or didn’t ever sign up for cable TV in 2014. MoffettNathanson and SNL Kagan later reported pay-TV companies lost record amounts of subscribers in both Q1 and Q2 of 2015. And Forrester Research believes these numbers will continue to decline through the year 2020, where 50% of American adults under the age of 32 won’t pay for cable TV at all.

You can read more about Pew’s methodologies and findings for its “Home Broadband 2015” study on the research firm’s site.

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