Cord cutting continues to grow in popularity, at cable TV’s expense

Cord cutting apparently is continuing to pick up the pace, despite all that cable TV still offers viewers: over-the-air local channels; regional sports networks; and the convenience of various networks, from ESPN to Freeform to Disney XD. (All of those are owned by Disney, of course.)

Still, the spiraling cost of cable is leading many to either: cancel cable altogether; cut back on service to a bare minimum (as I did); or, for younger adults, not bother signing up for cable TV in the first place. All of this having an impact on cable TV subscriptions, as the following infographic shows. Figures are from the Leichtman Research Group.

Infographic
Infographic by Statista (CC BY ND)limiting the number of such services to several tops.

Helping to stem the loss a bit are streaming subscription services like Sling TV and YouTube TV, which offer cable channels just as Comcast does.

Meanwhile, the number of homes subscribing to on-demand streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime has grown during the same time frame. Of course, most homes still subscribe to both cable TV and a streaming service, or even multiple streaming services. Though despite what Disney, WarnerMedia, etc. want, I’d still advise not paying for more than several such services tops.

Cable bills continue to grow

Leichtman also reports the mean household cable bill as of 2018 was $107 a month. That’s a 50% increase from 2010, when the average cable bill ran $71.24. Even comic books haven’t seen that big a price hike during the 2010s. It’s no surprise that this is a big contributor to cord cutting.

Of course, many people bundle cable TV with their broadband service, and the latter is likely also going up in price for many people. Still, even Comcast notes nowadays it’s more of a broadband service than a cable TV service. Barring some change, I suspect by the end of the next decade, things will look a lot different in the world of cable TV.

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