U.S. Linear Video Subscription Business Continues "Slow Leak"

Like a slow leak from a tire, U.S. linear video providers as a whole lost about two-tenths of one percent of the subscriber base, in the third quarter of 2014, according to Leichtman Research Group.

Cable TV companies lost about 439,000 net customers. Satellite providers lost 40,000 net customers, while AT&T and Verizon Communications gained 330,000 net customers. In other words, the market shrank, while market share shifted from cable and satellite to telcos.

The overall market shrinkage is quite small, but nevertheless represents the greatest net losses of any previous third quarter, with the satellite segment getting hit the hardest, according to Leichtman Research Group.

In fact, the top nine cable companies performed better, year over year. The cable companies lost about 440,000 video subscribers in the third quarter of  2014, compared to a loss of about 600,000 subscribers in the third quarter of 2013.

Satellite TV providers lost 40,000 subscribers in the third quarter, compared to a net gain of 174,000 subscribers in the third quarter of  2013.

The top telephone providers added 330,000 net video subscribers, down from 400,000 net additions in the same quarter of 2013.

Service Providers
Subscribers at
End of 3Q 2014
Net Adds in
3Q 2014
Cable Companies


Comcast
22,376,000
(81,000)
Time Warner
11,030,000
(182,000)
Charter
4,296,000
(24,000)
Cablevision
2,715,000
(56,000)
Suddenlink
1,171,000
2,200
Mediacom
900,000
(19,000)
Cable ONE
476,233
(14,076)
Other Cable Companies
6,505,000
(65,000)
Total Top Cable
49,469,233
(438,876)
Satellite TV Companies


DirecTV
20,203,000
(28,000)
DISH
14,041,000
(12,000)
Total DBS
34,244,000
(40,000)
Telephone Companies


AT&T U-verse
6,067,000
216,000
Verizon FiOS
5,533,000
114,000
Total Top Phone
11,600,000
330,000
Total Top Pay-TV Providers
95,313,233
(148,876)

                        Source: Leichtman Research Group, Inc.

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