Can Anyone Stop YouTube TV from Dominating Cord Cutting?





shutter stock youtube tv

In 2023, YouTube TV dominated cord cutting. It was a good year, and YouTube TV added 1.9 million new subscribers. This is more than all of the subscribers Hulu + Live TV, Sling TV, and Fubo gained in 2023 combined, according to the Leichtman Research Group.

So now the question is will anyone be able to stop YouTube TV’s explosive growth. YouTube TV jumped DISH to become the fourth largest live TV provider in the United States.

Not only did YouTube TV add 1.9 million subscribers but that was more than ten times the number of subscribers the next three largest live TV streaming services added in 2023. Combined, Hulu + Live TV, Sling TV, and Fubo lost 6,000 subscribers in 2023.

Here is how the live TV streaming subscriber numbers broke down in 2023:

  • YouTube TV added 1.9 million subscribers.
  • Hulu + Live TV added 100,000 subscribers.
  • Sling TV lost 279,000 subscribers.
  • Fubo added 173,000 subscribers.

As of the end of 2023, YouTube TV, Hulu + Live TV, Sling TV, and Fubo had a total of 16,173,000 subscribers. Of that number, 7,900,000 of them were YouTube TV subscribers.

So far, YouTube TV has found a sweet spot with many sports fans. Not only does it offer NFL Sunday Ticket, but it also has many of the popular sports channels without the more expensive RSNs. Even though for some not having RSNs may hurt them; for other sports fans just looking for NFL, college football, and other similar sports this is less expensive than many of the competitors.

The one thing that may be able to stop YouTube TV may be ESPN, Fox Sports, and Warner Bros. Discovery themselves.

Last month Disney, Fox, and Warner Bros. Discovery announced plans to launch a new sports streaming service that will give live access to sports networks like ESPN, FS1, and BTN. This fall these companies will launch a live TV streaming service offering 16 sports-related channels. Most of these channels are the same sports channels many cord cutters watch on YouTube TV.

Can Disney, Fox, and Warner Bros. Discovery keep the price low enough to challenge YouTube TV? If that happens this could seriously hurt YouTube TV’s ability to attract new subscribers and keep their base.

For now, Disney, Fox, and Warner Bros. Discovery seems to be one of the few real competitors to YouTube TV.

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