Cable, satellite TV and telecom firms collectively shed 251,000 video subscribers in 2013, led by continued cable losses, according to SNL Kagan. It was the U.S. pay TV industry’s first-ever full-year subscriber decline on record.
The U.S. subscription TV industry first showed a small net loss of subscribers a year ago. This year, that trickle has turned into a stream. The chief cause appears to be persistently high unemployment and a housing market that has many people living with their parents, reducing the need for a separate cable bill.
If basic cable programmers are in fear of losing young customers due to soaring cable subscription prices, premium-priced pay television programmers could be at greater risk. A new study says pay TV programmers are at risk of losing young TV viewers/consumers 18-29 — so-called Generation Ys, about 70 million strong — due to growing price sensitivities for all kinds of subscription television.