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Worst of cord-cutting is over, says Digital TV Research

From 2010 to 2020, cord-cutting emerged as a major issue for the pay-TV industry, as 27 million North American subscribers cancelled their services, according to Digital TV Research. However, while the numbers are still trending downward, the rate of cord-cutting is going to slow over the next few years.

In 2010 there were 116 million pay-TV subscribers across the U.S. and Canada with either pay satellite, IPTV or cable services. As of 2020, that number had dropped to about 89 million, including losing 6 million in both 2019 and 2020, Digital TV Research reports.

By 2026, Digital TV Research estimates that North American pay-TV subscribers will total 74 million. This would represent a loss of nearly 43 million subscribers from 2010-2026 (41 million in the U.S., 2 million in Canada), but the rate of decrease is expected to slow over the next five years.

The worst of the cord-cutting is over,” said Simon Murray, principal analyst at Digital TV Research. “Declines will be lower from 2021, falling by 16 million in total between 2020 and 2026. ‘Only’ 5 million digital cable TV subscribers will be lost. Satellite TV will fall by 7.5 million and IPTV by 3.4 million subscribers.”

Additional findings from Digital TV Research’s report includes that pay-TV penetration from 2010-2026 will drop from 90.5% to 53.6%. Also, after pay-TV revenues peaked in 2015 at $111 billion, by 2026 they will be at $62 billion, a decrease of $49 billion. TVTechnology

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