US Pay-TV: Worst Q2 subs losses

usaglobeLeichtman Research Group (LRG) has found that the eleven largest pay-TV providers in the US – representing about 95 per cent of the market – lost about 665,000 net video subscribers in 2Q 2016, compared to a loss of about 545,000 subscribers in 2Q 2015.

The top pay-TV providers account for 93.75 million subscribers – with the top six cable companies having 48.9 million video subscribers, satellite TV companies having 34.0 million subscribers (including about 710,000 from DISH’s Internet-delivered Sling TV), and the top telephone companies having 10.8 million subscribers.

Other key findings for the quarter include:

  • The top six cable companies lost about 225,000 video subscribers in 2Q 2016 – compared to a loss of about 340,000 subscribers in 2Q 2015
  • Top cable MSOs losses were the fewest in any second quarter since 2006
  • Satellite TV providers added 61,000 subscribers in 2Q 2016 (including gains from Sling TV) – compared to a loss of 214,000 in 2Q 2015
  • DirecTV’s net adds of 342,000 in 2Q 2016 were more than in any quarter since 1Q 2009
  • The top phone providers lost about 500,000 video subscribers in 2Q 2016 – compared to a gain of about 10,000 subscribers in 2Q 2015
  • AT&T U-verse’s 391,000 net losses in 2Q 2016 were the most losses ever in a quarter by any provider (for the second consecutive quarter)

“The top pay-TV providers lost about 665,000 subscribers in the traditionally weak second quarter, with net losses in 2Q 2016 surpassing the previous quarterly low set in last year’s second quarter,” said Bruce Leichtman, president and principal analyst for Leichtman Research Group. “Over the past year, the top pay-TV providers (including DISH’s Sling TV) lost about 705,000 subscribers – compared to a loss of about 380,000 over the prior year.”

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