It’s no secret that cord cutting is becoming a more popular choice. The field is growing, filled with live stream and on-demand options. You can buy TV shows and movies or you can subscribe to services that give you a wide collection of curated shows to watch at your will. Live stream services are now taking steps to look more like cable with full-fleshed guides and DVR options. And cord cutting tools like Untangle.TV are making it easier than ever to navigate the various choices.
Cable users are out there, but even they are slowly stepping more and more into the cord cutting pool. I don’t know a cable user without a subscription to Netflix or Hulu… and that’s where it starts.
It’s currently estimated that by 2021, which isn’t too far off, that “nontraditional” TV packages will grow to as much as 45 million homes. When you consider how easy it is to watch popular TV shows, events like the Academy Awards, and sporting events like March Madness, it makes sense why people are drawn to cord cutting.
Why pay more for something when you can continue to get the same quality or better at a much lower price? Case in point… a recent report from BillGeeks.com shows that Comcast receives billions of dollars per year from channels that are available free over-the-air with an antenna!
Doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, does it?
Comcast receives billions of dollars per year from channels that are available free over-the-air with an antenna.
TiVo puts out a quarterly report that looks at trends surrounding pay-TV and digital publishers. The goal is to look at trends in media to assess the popularity of each available option. If you had any question of the popularity of cord cutting, know that it’s not going anywhere. According to respondents, nearly 22% of people dumped cable in the last year. This number is up 4.4% from last year at this time. Additionally, 46% of people said they currently use an antenna to access local channels.
1/3 of people ditching Pay TV are using an antenna instead
What are the reasons for people ditching cable? The top three answers were:
Many of these answers increased since last year, including the use of services like Netflix (up 9.3%) and the use of an antenna (up 5.3%). People also noted their interest in binge-watching entire seasons as opposed to traditional methods, which is up 8.2% covering 27% of respondents.
Perhaps the most telling section though had to do with the cost of cable. While many cable users stated they were satisfied with the value they received, the average price for cable was as much as $100 and sometimes more. It’s no surprise that 81.4% of people complained that cable was too expensive or that they raised the price too often. This alone is up nearly 10% from last year. Other reasons people were unsatisfied with cable included poor customer service (33%) and poor cable service overall (30%).
One of the things that fuels cord cutting and the one thing that will help it to grow that much more as the year progresses is that people are tired of paying for channels they don’t want. This is something that makes the Skinny bundle model of live streaming or even the digital antenna, so appealing. In fact, in the highest response to this issue yet, 77.3% of respondents stated that they think they should only have to pay for the channels they want to watch.
…people are tired of paying for channels they don’t want.
Knowing that someone is unsatisfied is one thing, but the question then becomes what are they going to do about it? When asked if they plan to switch providers in the next six months, 32% of respondents said “Maybe,” and were on the fence. This is a number that rose 2% from previous surveys. 7.2% said they are planning to cut cable, 6.6% said they were moving cable services but keeping cable, and 3.5% were moving to online/app services.
All in all, as many as 49% of respondents were open to the idea of leaving their current cable provider for one service or another in the next six months. That’s a huge number of people, especially when you consider how many would consider leaving specifically for antenna and/or streaming services.
No, cable won’t crash overnight. But there’s a revolution brewing…
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This week's latest in cordcutting news and trends: New OTA stations, why it might be time to rescan your antenna, a look at Pay TV's sneaky hidden fees, Mohu's Independence Day sale and more.
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A new report found that there are over 100 available over-the-air stations you can watch for free with an antenna.