Like The Herald Business Journal on Facebook!
The Herald of Everett, Washington
Heraldnet.com

The top local business stories in your email

Contact Us:

Josh O'Connor
Publisher
Phone: 425-339-3007
joconnor@heraldnet.com

Jody Knoblich
General Sales Manager
Phone: 425-339-3445
Fax: 425-339-3049
jknoblich@heraldnet.com

Jim Davis
Editor
Phone: 425-339-3097
jdavis@heraldnet.com

Site address:
1800 41st Street, S-300,
Everett, WA 98203

Mailing address:
P.O. Box 930
Everett, WA 98206

HBJ RSS feeds

Pay-TV losing customers, analyst says

SHARE: facebook Twitter icon Linkedin icon Google+ icon Email icon |  PRINTER-FRIENDLY  |  COMMENTS
By Bob Fernandez
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Published:
One of pay-TV's top trend analysts, Bruce Leichtman, says the biggest pay-TV companies lost 80,000 TV subscribers over four quarters, a first in his research over more than a decade.
He attributed the decline to slow housing, a saturated pay-TV market, and some cord-cutting. The loss was about 0.1 percent of the 95-million subscriber TV market.
He calculated the subscriber numbers for the second, third and fourth quarters of 2012 and the first quarter of 2013, a period that captured seasonal swings in subscriber gains and losses.
Cable- and satellite-TV companies, Leichtman noted, also seem to be de-emphasizing the marketing of services to customers who may drop the TV service, seeking more profitable subscribers.
Leichtman cautioned against a "knee-jerk" reaction that the Internet was killing the pay-TV business with the 80,000 aggregate loss. "It's not swirling down the toilet bowl," he said, describing the industry as flat.
Leichtman, who runs Leichtman Research Group Inc., estimated that 87 percent of U.S. households subscribe to a TV service and that future TV growth is likely to be dependent on new-home construction.
Though this was the first four-quarter period he recorded a subscriber loss over pay-TV subscriber cycles, Leichtman said the industry has been flat since the "digital transition," which was completed in June 2009.
During this transition, over-the-air TV networks upgraded their transmission signals to digital technology from analog, forcing residents to purchase new TVs or obtain government-financed digital adapters.
The transition, Leichtman said, forced many pay-TV holdouts to subscribe to cable- or satellite-TV because of hassles related to the transition -- a last burst of new TV subscribers for the industry.

MORE HBJ HEADLINES

CALENDAR

Share your comments: Log in using your HeraldNet account or your Facebook, Twitter or Disqus profile. Comments that violate the rules are subject to removal. Please see our terms of use. Please note that you must verify your email address for your comments to appear.

You are logged in using your HeraldNet ID. Click here to update your profile. | Log out.

Our new comment system is not supported in IE 7. Please upgrade your browser here.

comments powered by Disqus

Market roundup