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TiVo: 1.5 Million U.S. Households Plan to Cut the Cord Within 6 Months

12 Mar, 2015 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Percentage of cord-cutters is small, impact on revenue is not

About 1.5 million U.S. pay-TV households plan to cut the cord in the next six months, while another 38.1 million say their cable/satellite/telecom bill is too expensive, according to new data from Digitalsmiths, a subsidiary of TiVo.

Indeed, nearly 25% of 3,000 respondents in the Q4 survey said their pay-TV bill exceeded $150 a month. At the same time, the report found most pay-TV homes watch no more than 10 channels — fueling the debate for small bundles and OTT video.

Indeed, HBO remained the most-coveted premium channel (24%), followed by Showtime (17%), movie channel/network (15%), sports (13%), Starz and Cinemax (11%). More than 58% of respondents don’t subscribe to a premium channel.

HBO, Showtime and Starz are all planning over-the-top video service launches.

“Will subscribers continue to pay $80 to $100+ per month for 10 channels, considering the alternative options that are now available,” read the report.

With just 2.1% of respondents switching pay-TV providers year-over-year, nearly 8% said they plan to and 4.2% said they would drop pay-TV service — both data points within pay-TV industry churn standards.

“While some of these numbers seem small, they should still raise concern for pay-TV providers since multiplied by millions of subscribers, the revenue threat alone is apparent,” the report read.

Interestingly, nearly 50% of respondents said they would keep pay-TV service if it added content recommendation technology pioneered by Netflix. The SVOD leader revolutionized the market by creating software that recommends movies and TV shows to subscribers based on their viewing habits.

Regardless, 24% of respondents sill watch up to three hours a day of live TV, which up from 23% during the previous-year period. More than 43% of respondents watch less than one hour of recorded programming a day, with 26% watching up to two hours; 12.5% up to three hours.


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