Cord Cutters Are Cutting Back & Now Pay For Just 3 or Fewer Streaming Services





Stressed woman looking at papers

In 2020 many Americans found themselves sitting at home with nothing to do but watch TV. This led to reports that many Americans were paying for 4 to 6 TV streaming services. Now it seems that cord cutters are cutting back as they see the cost of living increase.

Recently we asked over 500 of our readers how many TV streaming services they paid for, and 58% of our readers said they paid for three or fewer streaming services. In this poll, we clearly said this was for paid streaming services, so no free services and only TV services, so no music services, for example.

Interestingly there was a group of what we consider to be super users, as 10% of our readers said they paid for seven or more streaming services.

Here is how the poll broke down:

  • 0 Services 3%
  • 1 Sevices 14%
  • 2 Services 19%
  • 3 Services 22%
  • 4 Services 19%
  • 5 Services 10%
  • 6 Services 3%
  • 7 or More Services 10%

When you add in the cord cutters who pay for four services, 77% of cord cutters pay for four or fewer streaming services. This means that if you pay for five or more services, you are part of a small minority and could be considered part of a super user group.

One type of streaming hit hardest by cord cutters cutting back has been live TV streaming services. Recently multiple live Tv streaming services have lost subscribers, including Hulu + Live TV losing 100,000 subscribers, Sling TV losing 97,000, and Fubo losing 118,000 subscribers during the 2nd quarter of 2023.

On-demand services have also been reporting drops in subscribers, including Max and Disney+. These drops are coming as some of our readers are telling us they are willing to rotate streaming services to save money. Instead of paying for a service all year, they are more willing got subscribe for just a month or two to a service so they can binge-watch everything. After that month is done, they switch to a new service to save money.

We have also recently seen free streaming services like Tubi, Pluto TV, The Roku Channel, according to a report from Nielsen. Some of our readers said they are using free ad-supported services to save money.

This all comes as the Labor Department released a report on Thursday showing the Consumer Price Index – the benchmark for inflation – rose 3.2% over a year ago, with an increase of 0.2% in July. 

That was best illustrated by a tweet sent by Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody Analytics, who said inflation is still hitting hard. “Due to the high inflation, the typical household spent $202 more in July than they did a year ago to buy the same goods and services,” said Zandi. “And they spent $709 more than they did two years ago.”

As Americans face paying more for everyday items, it seems TV is something they are looking to cut back on.

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