Nearly 5 Million Homes Will Cut Traditional Pay TV Service In 2015

Pay TV cord-cutting will continue to accelerate in the coming years -- with pay TV viewers as a percentage of the population dropping to just over 75% in three years.

The latest study by eMarketer says 4.9 million U.S. TV homes will unsubscribe from traditional pay TV service by the end of 2015, up over 4.4 million a year ago -- an 11% gain.

In four years, the study says, the percentage will grow to 8.4 million, climbing at a rate of 12.5% next year, 15.4% in 2017, 14.3% in 2018, and 15.2% in 2019.

Those who have never have been pay TV customers -- “cord-nevers” -- will rise to 15.9 million homes in 2015, climbing to 19.8 million of four years from now.

Cable TV pay providers will drop to 52.4 million subscribers by 2019 from 54.8 million currently, while satellite providers will hit 31.2 million, down from 33 million this year. Only telco providers will see growth during this period -- rising slightly to 12.0 million in 2019 from 11.6 million in 2015.



Pay TV viewers as a percentage of the population will drop to 83.6% this year and will rise to 77.4% in 2019. Non-viewers of pay service will reach 16.4% in 2015 and rise to 22.6% in 2019.

Forecasts and estimates from eMarketer are based on an analysis from research firms, government agencies, media firms and public companies, plus interviews with executives at publishers, ad buyers and agencies.

6 comments about "Nearly 5 Million Homes Will Cut Traditional Pay TV Service In 2015".
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  1. Leonard Zachary from T___n__, December 10, 2015 at 1:04 p.m.

    ESPN and CBS : what me worry?

    Advertisers will Us more.

  2. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, December 10, 2015 at 2:36 p.m.

    Let's say that these forecasts are accurate and in four or five years advertisers will be able to reach only 77% of the population via ad-supported TV buys, not whatever the current level is--say 84-88%. By that time ad blockers will probably diminish the reach potential of digital options to 35-45% of the population, with most of those who block ads being the most desireable from a marketing viewpoint---young and afluent. As a result, advertisers who feel the need to attain nearly universal  TV/video coverage, will augment their TV buys with digital, adding, perhaps, 10 points to their reach. In both cases CPMs---TV and digital---will increase dramatically, as a result of increasing rating fragmentation but advertisers will still go to TV first, then to digital, not the other way around, assuming they follow the eyeballs and fixate on maximizing reach. There's ample room for both platforms to function symbiotically in this scenario.

  3. Leonard Zachary from T___n__, December 10, 2015 at 2:43 p.m.

    Cutting the cord is PayTV blocking.

    Last I checked Netflix had no ad blockers. (Just no ads)

    Nor do any of the millions of Mobile Apps- it's the browser.....

    which means ad blocking has nothi9ng to do PayTV bundles going the way of the Buggy Whip.

  4. Leonard Zachary from T___n__ replied, December 10, 2015 at 3:14 p.m.

    Definition of "reach" using Nielsen polling is a Buggy Whip.

  5. ida tarbell from s-t broadcasting, December 10, 2015 at 4:54 p.m.

    It will be an even bigger landslide in 2016.

  6. Douglas Ferguson from College of Charleston replied, December 11, 2015 at 10:59 a.m.

    Your point about ad blockers is well-taken, but what percentage of cord-always homes actually view commercials? Certainly not when they binge-watch Netflix. Am I alone in recording live shows using my two-tuner DVR in order to buffer away most breaks? I'm not even sure that DVR penetration accounts for differential behavior. I wonder if Nielsen can measure mobile device distraction during commercials. If I ever am stuck in a pod, it's a great time to check email or Facebook.

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