With more than 100 million TV subscribers in the US big cable, satellite, and telco carriers are in good shape. However, a recent report shows more and more viewers are "cutting the cord" and watching their favorite shows via over-the-air antennas Netflix, or the Web.
TechCrunch recently commented on a report from Toronto-based Convergence Consulting Group, which addresses viewing trends that might be trouble for companies like Cablevision, Comcast, DirecTV, and Time Warner. Almost 800,000 households in the US "cut the cord," and ended service from their cable, satellite, or telephone company TV providers turning instead to Web-based sources like Hulu, iTune, Netflix or even over-the-air antennas for their favorite shows, according to the report. As TechCrunch points out, the 800,000 cord cutters represent less than 1 percent of US households subscribing to traditional service sources. However, by the end 2011, the report estimates the number of cord-cutting households in the U.S. will double to about 1.6 million.
Even more interesting is the report's assertion that US TV watchers are getting use to online video, with about 17 percent of the US TV audience watching at least one or two shows online a week, up from just 12 percent in 2008, and set to rise to 21 percent this year. The rate of this change will accelerate in the coming years as the Internet continues to offer more variety and higher quality options at a much lower cost. Watch Ian Pearson talk about the future of television.