dslreports logo
site
spacer

spacer
 
   
spc
story category
'Cord Shaving' on The Increase
by Karl Bode 01:12PM Monday Jan 20 2014 Tipped by newview See Profile
The NPD Group today reported that subscriptions to HBO, Showtime, and other premium TV channels have declined over the past two years, as Netflix and other subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) services have gained in popularity. The new report notes a 6% overall decline in U.S. households subscribing to premium TV channels over the past two years, while households subscribing to SVOD grew 4%.

"As SVOD services have gained momentum, it’s clear that some consumers are trimming their premium-TV subscriptions,” said Russ Crupnick, senior vice president of industry analysis for The NPD Group. “As SVOD increasingly strives to become a channel itself, viewers might consider it to be an adequate substitution for other premium channels, or perhaps they are switching to economize on their time and money spent."

We've seen other reports mirroring the same findings though using different terminology for users who aren't cutting the cord, but are certainly reducing the amount paid for services (Digital Smiths Corporation recently called this sector of users "cord cheaters"). Cable VoIP is also expected to see slashed revenues as users try to go wireless only to counter endless TV programming hikes.

view:
topics flat nest 

newview
Ex .. Ex .. Exactly
Premium
join:2001-10-01
Parsonsburg, MD
kudos:1
Reviews:
·DIRECTV
·Comcast

5 recommendations

Shooting themselves in the foot

Twice yearly fee hikes, bogus "Broadcast TV Fees, exorbitant below-the-line fees, a recession that's not over, unemployment and other factors eroding the economic well-being are all contributing to an atmosphere of consumers questioning "how can I save money"?

This will only get worse ... and yet the cableTV industry blithely ignores the trend and continues down the path of their own destruction.

Bogeljubov

@artnet.pl

1 recommendation

Re: Shooting themselves in the foot

We do not have a tv, but we see all the tv shows we like, which is not too many, by downloading them the next day from a torrent site; We get news from a half-dozen online newspapers / news sites, and that includes video; we download movies from torrent sites.

Except for sports, which we don't much care for (though I would enjoy seeing a baseball game now and then), we don't need more than our $35/month dsl connection (6/1).

We have a voip telephone setup that costs about $5 per month for all the calling that we want to do, and we have a seven-11 cell phone that costs about $25/year that we keep for emergencies.

Why does anybody need more? It seems like a big waste of money.

Wow

@sbcglobal.net

Re: Shooting themselves in the foot

Sounds like a hell of a lot of work to save $35.

CableCutter

@cox.net

Re: Shooting themselves in the foot

said by Wow :

Sounds like a hell of a lot of work to save $35.

I know in my situation, I've been a long time cord cutter. I have an OTA antenna connected to my mac with 4 tuners available for recording. I get over 26 channesl available to me OTA for free. I found 80% of my shows are I would watch OTA for free. Why pay the for a worse signal when OTA is uncompressed and sharper than any Cable/Sat provider can ever offer. The rest I have setup in a program that automatically searches and downloads torrents for my shows. It will download them, email me when it's done (even extract and move into a folder) then my plex system hooked to my 55" tv auto indexes and finds the video every 15 minutes. Pretty painless really. With the Plex apps available I can watch my shows anywhere in the world as long as I have access to internet. Most cable companies want you to be "IN" your house in order to watch tv on your devices, not Plex! I also have the EyeTV app so I can watch Live TV across the internet straight from my house. I get almost any super popular show within hours of it showing on the east coast and in HD quality might I add. For 55+ bucks a month savings I'm happy!

KrK
Heavy Artillery For The Little Guy
Premium
join:2000-01-17
Tulsa, OK
Oh, they have plans.

They are going to monetize internet access to replace the income PayTV loses and far, far more. IMHO Cable companies are looking even better from a future revenue standpoint then they did 10 years ago.

Of course, they all assumes they can continue to exist in the current regulatory environment (basically, where they are free to do as they wish.) If Net Neutrality fails permanently then cord cutting will be irrelevant.
--
"Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the merger of state and corporate power." -- Benito Mussolini

KrK
Heavy Artillery For The Little Guy
Premium
join:2000-01-17
Tulsa, OK
Imagine a world where Big Cable buys out Netflix.

Oh Snap.
tmc8080

join:2004-04-24
Brooklyn, NY
Reviews:
·ooma
·Optimum Online
·Verizon FiOS

for whom the bell tolls

the cable industry's had their head in the sand for quite some time about the necessary changes in their business model. the number of hours an individual watches can be streamed over the internet quite easily on demand and/or queued onto local or remote servers for later viewing. while it's possible to get subscription fees for the limited programming that *MUST* be watched live such as sports or "breaking news" events.. the amount consumers are willing to pay is breaking past it's limits and therefore you see not quite consumer backlash.. as in they have NO alternative-- you are seeing alternative choices and paths being taken... including "piracy".

and you can probably guess why the cost of an internet service as a stand-alone product is rising in cost. afterall, why let a consumer get $250 in services, taxes and fees included for a mere $50.
elray

join:2000-12-16
Santa Monica, CA
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·EarthLink

Re: for whom the bell tolls

The cable TV industry is and has been fully aware of the desires of a small minority of their customer base, but their hands are tied by content licensing.

Absent some form of national legislation requiring wholesale unbundling of desired content, pay-tv pricing is going to continue to increase, and the vast majority of households will simply pay it, as most of the content is *not* available conveniently through other means.

We may still be vastly underemployed and in a deep recession (with a lot more to come), but the average household can and will still well afford $70 a month for pay-tv - its still the best value out there.

Our non-promotional standalone internet (2/1) is now $14.99/month.
waycoolphil

join:2000-09-22
Cathedral City, CA
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·Verizon Online DSL

Re: for whom the bell tolls

Some independent polling organization should poll cable and satellite customers and ask them if they would like to stop paying for all the channels they never watch. Do you really think THAT would be a small minority?

What makes you think the "average household" can still well afford $70/month for CATV? Something tells me you are not in an average household. Nor is it the best value out there. I think most people would tell you that their cell phone bill is a better value.

And the $14.99/mo standalone Internet is slower than DSL and for all practical purposes is totally useless.
Millenium

join:2013-10-30
kudos:1

Re: for whom the bell tolls

Except for using Netflix, watching youtube, Facetiming, websurfing, steaming music, emailing. Except for all that, yes it is useless.
waycoolphil

join:2000-09-22
Cathedral City, CA

Re: for whom the bell tolls

It can't be used for any of those functions except streaming music, email and limited Web surfing. It's way too slow for watching video. Have you ever used a connection that slow in the last 8-10 years?
Millenium

join:2013-10-30
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable

Re: for whom the bell tolls

I use it now, for all those things. Netflix, Facetime, Youtube. In fact, it'll run two of those things at once. Two Netflix streams. A Netflix stream while Youtubing or Facetiming. It'll even run two of those thins and still be able to browse the internet.

I have the $15 2/1 standalone from Time Warner and Netflix and iPods and laptops/netbooks.

RRedline
Rated R
Premium
join:2002-05-15
Williamsport, PA

Re: for whom the bell tolls

I guess now you're going to tell us that you have a 60" TV, and 1 Mbps streams looks "amazing" on it?
--
One nation, under Zod!
Millenium

join:2013-10-30
kudos:1

Re: for whom the bell tolls

Nope.
elray

join:2000-12-16
Santa Monica, CA
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·EarthLink
It isn't a matter of what they "want", per a poll, but what they vote for, with their wallets.

2M/1M worked fine for Netflix, YouTube, and every other streaming service I tested, anticipating unfounded remarks like yours.

Clearly, it would fall down trying to do "4K", whenever that actually becomes relevant, but by that time, I would expect TWC and other last mile providers to raise the floor speed again.
waycoolphil

join:2000-09-22
Cathedral City, CA

Re: for whom the bell tolls

"4K"? Are you kidding. 2/1 can't even do a single 720HD stream on Netflix. There's nothing unfounded about my remarks. You make it sound like there's no need for anything faster until 4K is available. What a jokester you are.
thedragonmas

join:2007-12-28
Albany, GA
kudos:1
said by elray:

Our non-promotional standalone internet (2/1) is now $14.99/month.

ouch, mediacom charges me $30/mo for 3/256k "intro" if i drop basic tv add on another $15, oh and thats a 150GB/mo cap.

said by waycoolphil:

And the $14.99/mo standalone Internet is slower than DSL and for all practical purposes is totally useless.

when i had dsl on the other side of town, it was 1.5M/256k, with a 2/1, you can easily do all of those things, its called a buffer. and a consistent connection speed, what screws things up is speedboost, that makes the servers 'think" you can go faster than you actually can sustained.

for the record, i used netflix, hulu, youtube, pandora, and a myriad of other things with no issues what so ever, you dont need a 1GBps connection for video.

as for using a connection "that slow" im betting a lot more people than you realize do. most folks probably just want the cheapist connection, and could care less what the speed is.
Millenium

join:2013-10-30
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable

Change it up:

Put those $15/month commercial free "premium channels" on the bottom as standalone products and I'd bet we'd see the number going up. All the junk that has to be bought to get them has to hurt them.

If I could get just an HBO package (without a $20/month box fee and basic cable subscription) I'd add it to my internet from Time Warner.
waycoolphil

join:2000-09-22
Cathedral City, CA
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·Verizon Online DSL

1 recommendation

Cable TV is only a small part of it

CATV just happens to be an obvious and easy way for people to cut back on expenses. They're also cutting back on TVs themselves, cell phone bills, driving, dining out, holiday gifting, new clothing, health care, etc. etc. etc. Both the lack of jobs, very low wages and the end of unemployment compensation means they can't afford to buy the stuff these mega corporations are trying to sell to them. They don't have any money any more. These industries should be working to ensure that their customers have the funds to purchase their products. Stockholders do not have the final word. The broke customer gets the last shot.

Goliath2k
Premium
join:2013-12-28
united state

Hence the big push against net neutrality...

The TV providers see this as lost revenue which needs to be recaptured, so they'll try to limit access to Netflix, Amazon Prime, YouTube, Hulu, etc. in an effort to force people back to their premium channels.

One good strategy I've found is to cancel the premium channels, wait for the free premium channel preview weekends, then record a bunch of movies on there and watch them at your leisure.

Jason Levine
Premium
join:2001-07-13
USA

Re: Hence the big push against net neutrality...

This is also the reason they're pushing for data caps and overage charges. If you have 5GB of data per month and pay $1 for every 1GB you go over, suddenly Netflix/YouTube/Amazon/etc are much more expensive than Cable TV.

(Even if you watched Netflix in SD, you'd hit a 5GB cap after about 6.5 hours of viewing.)
--
-Jason Levine

Goliath2k
Premium
join:2013-12-28
united state

1 recommendation

Re: Hence the big push against net neutrality...

Ooh good point! I hadn't even thought of that...so that way they don't have to look like the "bad guy" by blocking/throttling Netflix outright, but instead they can go for the slicker approach.

Just price Netflix out of the market and then point fingers and say "See! We told them that the traditional TV model is the best!"

(mild addition, Netflix in its lowest quality, which we use, is 0.3 GB/hour, so theoretically you could stretch that to about 16 hours a month if you used that setting)

Jason Levine
Premium
join:2001-07-13
USA

Re: Hence the big push against net neutrality...

And, even if you soldier on and keep using Netflix and other Internet video services, the ISPs get money headed their way for that usage.
--
-Jason Levine
Mr Matt

join:2008-01-29
Eustis, FL
kudos:1

1 recommendation

It is about price support of company stock.

Since most corporate executives are heavily invested in company stock they must continue to show a ramp up in revenue each year to support stock prices. Executives don't care about providing value to their customers. In view of the fact that Cable Companies are essentially a monopoly executives do not have to worry about competition. Unless the cable industry is regulated, more and more crap charges will continue to be added to customers bills until customers will wind up paying $200.00 per month for 20 Channels.
whoyourdaddy

join:2013-02-20
Honey Brook, PA

i've cut the cord

they will never learn Netflix all the way

DeadSurvivor
Shattered Dreams
Premium
join:2013-09-03
Tampa, FL
Reviews:
·Bright House

Time To Shave ...

Premium channels have never been a big part of my television viewing, which appears to become less important as time passes ... too damn many "MTV" Reality Show channels for my liking. I'll be shaving the television portion of my current cable bill and perhaps switch to Verizon's "Select" Triple Play since television is not a major part of my entertainment these days.

TOPDAWG
Premium
join:2005-04-27
Midland, ON
kudos:3
Reviews:
·TekSavvy DSL

netflix is not much without the big guys

While I agree with you guys about netflix being great. The fact is %99 of their content is owned by someone else. While netflix is starting to make their own content they can't survive without the other content markers.

Netflix needs them content markers a lot more then they need netflix.
Bengie25

join:2010-04-22
Wisconsin Rapids, WI
Reviews:
·Solarus

1 recommendation

Re: netflix is not much without the big guys

said by TOPDAWG:

Netflix needs them content markers a lot more then they need netflix.

Only for a bit. Most young kids I know don't watch "TV" anymore, even if they don't have Netflix or Hulu. There is just too much entertainment on the Internet that is free.

Most of these kids of spoiled and get to go to movies a lot, but if they want to watch "TV", the go to the movies, rent it, buy it, or pirate it.

Anyone who doesn't recognize this it out of touch with reality.

IowaCowboy
Iowa native
Premium
join:2010-10-16
Springfield, MA

1 recommendation

I ditched the premiums

I ditched the premiums when the free trial ended.

antdude
A Ninja Ant
Premium,VIP
join:2001-03-25
United State
kudos:4

OTA + Internet

FTW.

Steve Mehs
Gun Control Is Using A Steady Hand
Premium
join:2005-07-16
kudos:1

Re: OTA + Internet

Unless you watch original content on the movie channels. Currently I watch 16 series between the four movie packages with a few on the way for 2014. At $3 per episode over the course of a 10-12 episode season, it's not much of a money savings versus the $42/month I pay extra for all of the premiums.

•••
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

This actually makes sense

Unlike cord cutting, which few people can actually do.
graniterock

join:2003-03-14
London, ON

Careful!

Careful! If you shave too much off that cord you might get a shock!
Millenium

join:2013-10-30
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable

They say no

»www.latimes.com/entertainment/en···r89BZ4aS

HBO, Starz, and Showtime say group is wrong - subscriptions are up.
yates

join:2010-04-30
Andover, CT
Reviews:
·Clearwire Wireless

Just joined the Cord Shaving

After the promotional pricing on our cable subscription just came to an end and facing additional price hikes at the end of this month, I've now joined the group of "Cord Shavers." I downgraded to a more basic package that dropped all the premium channels with the intention of leaning more on outlets like Hulu and Netflix.