2023 has been a rough year for cable TV, but could it be remembered as the year cable TV died? Recently Nexstar the largest owner of ABC, CBS, FOX, and NBC stations, said they expect cable TV losses to slow and even come to a stop. The truth though is that it is starting to look like 2023 will be remembered as the year cable TV died.
Just this week, Spectrum quietly started promoting its new streaming option to new TV customers through the new Xumo TV box. Current TV customers can keep their old cable TV service but new ones are being pushed into a streaming version of its packages.
So why do we say 2023 may be remembered as the year cable TV died? Here is a quick look at the current situation of cable TV.
Rapid Decline In Cable TV Subscribers:
2023 has not been kind to cable TV companies like Comcast, DIRECTV, and Spectrum. In just the first half of 2023, cable TV companies have lost over 2,748,000 TV subscribers.
All together, cable TV companies are losing about 15,000 subscribers every single day in 2023. If this trend continues, cable TV companies will lose over 4 million subscribers in 2023.
Time Spent Watching Cable TV Is Dropping:
Even the remaining cable TV subscribers are not spending a lot of time watching cable TV. According to a new report from Inscape, the total cable TV and satellite viewership on VIZIO TVs has dropped to just 37.1%. This is down from 46.9% during the same period in 2021. Streaming now accounts for 53.8% of all TV time. Video games now account for 5.4% of TV time, and OTA TV is 3.7% of all TV viewing.
Spectrum Says Cable TV is Broken:
Recently, during its fight with Disney, Spectrum came out and said the current cable TV model is broken. From that fight, Spectrum got Disney to agree to drop eight channels from its lineup. This is something that many cable companies are reportedly also hoping to achieve.
AT&T Reportedly Wants to Sell DIRECTV:
The future of cable TV is so bad AT&T is reportedly looking into ways to sell DIRECTV. Last week, it was reported that AT&T is looking at options to sell all of its remaining shares of DIRECTV or to sell part of the company to other investors. This move could see AT&T fully leave the Pay TV service that it entered back in 2015 when it bought DIRECTV.
A Growing Number of Cable TV Companies Are Shutting Down TV Service:
Recently we have seen several small and even medium-sized cable TV companies like WOW! drop TV. One of the largest companies WOW! announced it would stop selling its TV service. Instead, it is now promoting YouTube TV as it tries to move its customers over to streaming. This comes as some smaller Cable TV companies say TV is no longer profitable.
Why is 2023 The Year Cable TV Died?
For years, cable TV companies have tried their hardest to ignore the threat of cord cutting. Now it seems a growing number of them, including some of the largest companies, are ditching cable TV.
Cable TV won’t fully die in 2023, but it is clear the year that something broke in cable TV. Now, cord cutting has gone from something happening to the leading dominant player in the world of entertainment. No longer is cable TV dictating how people watch sports, movies, and TV shows. Now, sports is increasingly available through services like Max, Peacock, and Paramount+.
So the question now is not if cable TV will die but when will its slow, painful death end. No matter how much many hope to stop it increasingly, it is becoming clear that starting with smaller and midsize cable companies are already running from TV. DIRECTV the 3rd largest pay TV provider’s parent company, is looking to offload it. This all together will speed up the death of cable TV the question now is when will the death come to an end.