2017 is on track to be the biggest loss in cord-cutting to date with people ditching pay TV at a speeding rate. Due to the collection of affordable streaming services available, people have found a reason to ditch the big bundle cable packages. Collectively, the biggest pay-TV providers are expecting a third-quarter loss of about million subscribers in total from Dish TV, AT&T, DirecTV, Charter, Comcast, Verizon FIOS, and Altice.
In 2016 alone, it was reported that there were about 16 million Americans who cut the cord. The number of drops shows how rapid the population’s attitude towards established pay-TV continues to shift. The market is rapidly changing to a nationally competitive market. Streaming services are now offered almost nationwide: Youtube, Sling, Fubo, Hulo, and AT&T are some of the alternatives to the big TV regional monopolies-offering a standard price of $40 a month- as opposed to the $100 that cable bundles traditionally charge. For $40 a month for 50 channels, it’s no wonder why the conventional pay tv subscribers, especially cable continue to struggle.
Thanks to the advance in technology, customers finally have a choice with the emergence on streaming and. AT&T alone lost 385k subscribers in their Direct-TV and U-verse networks in the third quarter, however, 296k out of the 385k portion of those subscribers opted for it’s digital DirecTV. Although AT&T has adapted with their digital service, the downside is that they are still down over 900k in the first nine months of the year. The question is: How will cable and all the other struggling TV subscribers that have cornered the market for decades keep up with the rapid change? Will they all adapt to digital streaming services like AT&T? Will they answer back by significantly lowering their prices to compete?