via DSL Reports
by Karl Bode
March 15, 2017
Wednesday Mar 15 2017 18:10 EDT
A new report by the Diffusion Group indicates that the percentage of homes with broadband — but not cable TV — have doubled in just the last five years. According to the firm’s paywalled report, “Life Without Legacy Pay-TV: A Profile of U.S. Cord Cutters and Cord Nevers,” (hat tip, Fierce Cable) 9% of this country’s 85 million broadband-enabled homes reported being cord “nils” — or no traditional cable TV whatsoever. That total jumped to 22% as of this year, notes Diffusion.
The report indicates that cable providers continue to downplay the threat from cord cutting and “cord trimming” alike.
“TDG first predicted in 2006 that Legacy Pay-TV operators were about to face technological and market forces the likes of which they had never seen,” said the group. “At that time IP video delivery forecast to be a minor supplement to traditional Pay-TV; as limited to PC viewing and in no way a threat to living room viewing. They could not have been more wrong.”
Of course the industry now faces assault on multiple fronts. They have the steady drip of quarterly TV subscriber declines, but they also have a spike in the number of users trimming back (cord trimming) on their overall cable packages due to high overall costs. There’s also the fact that as the housing market rebounded, new home owners and renters aren’t signing up for cable. That’s only expected to increase as alternatives from Google, Hulu and others enter the market.
“Wall Street and the media are myopically focused on the quarterly drip of legacy pay-TV subscribers, which unfortunately overlooks a larger and more dangerous trend,” said analyst Michael Greeson. “As TDG noted long ago, where broadband (and broadband video) goes, legacy pay-TV subscriptions will increasingly decline. This is indeed what has transpired.”