The largest pay-TV providers in the US – representing about 95% of the market – lost about 1,325,000 net video subscribers in 1Q 2019, compared to a pro forma net loss of about 305,000 subscribers in 1Q 2018.
These figures from the Leichtman Research Group (LRG) confirm other recent reports about the continuing losses of traditional pay-TV platforms. The first quarter of 2019 marked the worst ever for cord-cutting, with over 1.1 million fleeing bundle, according to BTG Research. And the informitv Multiscreen Index reported that US TV providers seep 1.28 million subscribers in Q1 2019.
The top pay-TV providers now account for about 87.8 million subscribers – with the top six cable companies having 46.7 million video subscribers, satellite TV services 28.3 million subscribers, the top telephone companies 8.9 million subscribers, and the top publicly reporting Internet-delivered (vMVPD) pay-TV services 3.9 million subscribers.
Key findings for the quarter include:
– Satellite TV services lost about 810,000 subscribers in 1Q 2019 – compared to a net loss of about 375,000 subscribers in 1Q 2019. DTH net losses were more than in any previous quarter, marking the fourth consecutive quarter of record net DTH losses.
– The top six cable companies lost about 335,000 video subscribers in 1Q 2019 – compared to a loss of about 285,000 subscribers in 1Q 2018.
– The top telephone providers lost about 105,000 video subscribers in 1Q 2019 – compared to a loss of about 50,000 subscribers in 1Q 2018.
– Internet-delivered (vMVPD) services, Sling TV and DirecTV Now, lost about 75,000 subscribers in 1Q 2019 – compared to about 405,000 net adds in 1Q 2018.
– AT&T had a net loss of about 625,000 subscribers across its three pay-TV services (DirecTV, AT&T U-verse, and DirecTV Now) in 1Q 2019 – compared to a net gain of about 125,000 subscribers in 1Q 2018.