All those clamoring for the dissolution of pay-TV services may have a little something to cheer about. Maybe. While we are still years away from making any sort of actual headway in changing the current big cable bundle model, big cable did show some signs of vulnerability in Thursday’s second quarter reporting.
The top four cable providers, Comcast, DirecTV, Dish Network and Time Warner all reported a net loss of users, collectively totaling a loss 407,000 customers. But no one seems very worried. In fact, offsetting those 407,000 cancellations was a gain of about 300,000 new subscribers thanks to up-and-comers, Verizon FiOS and AT&T U-Verse. Plus, these companies are still reporting billions in profits and increased revenue.
While cord cutters may be quietly increasing in number, they are absolutely blown away by the number of customers that sign up for or renew their cable contract year after year. The situation is exemplified by the current situation with NBC’s Olympic coverage. Although the attacks are very vocal and somewhat reasonable, NBC has zero need or reason to heed to the critics demands. Prime-time viewership is at an all-time high, and the vast majority of people readily accept tape-delayed broadcasts.
Take a look at what Time Warner CEO said in regards to the possibly of offering HBO as a standalone service (Timer Warner owns HBO):
“There are 10s of millions of homes with multichannel TV. And they will keep multichannel TV…the whole idea that there’s a lot of people out there that want to drop multichannel TV, and just have a Netflix or an HBO — that’s not right. Look for the data, you won’t find them.”
Of course there are probably hundred of thousands, if not millions of people that want exactly what he disregards, but he can’t seem to find them, and probably won’t anytime soon.