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Americans cut cable TV subscriptions at a hefty clip of 1.8 million


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#1 of 41 OFFLINE   Kevin Collins

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Posted September 09 2013 - 07:36 PM

According to Business Insider, 1.8 million households decided to turn off their cable TV subscriptions in the 3rd quarter of 2013.  Satellite TV providers also saw a drop in customers at 366K.

 

Why is this happening?  Maybe some are tired of the ongoing cable/network wars where they don't get to watch the shows they want to watch, but can over OTA.  Maybe the >$100 / month for the cable bill is just getting to hard to justify? 

 

Have you cut the cord?  If so, why?


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#2 of 41 OFFLINE   TheBat

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Posted September 09 2013 - 07:59 PM

According to Business Insider, 1.8 million households decided to turn off their cable TV subscriptions in the 3rd quarter of 2013.  Satellite TV providers also saw a drop in customers at 366K.

 

Why is this happening?  Maybe some are tired of the ongoing cable/network wars where they don't get to watch the shows they want to watch, but can over OTA.  Maybe the >$100 / month for the cable bill is just getting to hard to justify? 

 

Have you cut the cord?  If so, why?

I cut the cord last may of this year. the best thing that I have done in a while. the price was killing it for me. I was on direct tv for since 1997.

 

Jacob



#3 of 41 OFFLINE   Carl Johnson

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Posted September 10 2013 - 12:06 AM

I cut my basic cable subscription a few years ago when I moved to an area which could pick up all of the major networks over the air. I wouldn't say that I cut the cord, I just don't think that it's worth the expense.

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#4 of 41 OFFLINE   revgen

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Posted September 10 2013 - 01:44 AM

Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, and DVD/Blu-Ray rentals are changing the game.

 

The only real exclusive for cable/satellite is live sports.



#5 of 41 OFFLINE   Ejanss

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Posted September 11 2013 - 02:41 PM


Why is this happening?

 

Historically, I blame the Disney Channel.  (Although Cartoon Network took the rap for it.)

 

Maybe the >$100 / month for the cable bill is just getting to hard to justify?

(Well, yes, Comcast/XFinity now trying to sell me on paying $99/mo. minimum on local HD channels I was getting for free two months ago would be up in the top three reasons

But I still blame the Disney Channel.  And Bravo.)


Edited by Ejanss, September 11 2013 - 02:44 PM.


#6 of 41 OFFLINE   Jesse Skeen

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Posted September 14 2013 - 10:20 PM

I haven't seen any reason to have cable for about 20 years now. I've never accepted the concept of paying for channels that also interrupt their shows with commercials that they're also being paid to show- that's why I get broadcast stations for free. Plus for more than 15 years now most cable channels ruin the picture with their logos always onscreen, which is ENTIRELY unacceptable. HBO seems to be free of these annoyances, but they crop their scope movies to 1.78, just like they used to show everything in pan and scan in the standard-def days.

 

It does amaze me that there isn't even ONE channel out there that would make me want cable or satellite. Maybe if MTV were still around- even though that always had commercials, it was really cool but now they hardly ever show music-related programming anymore! I see many other cable channels are abandoning their original formats as well.


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#7 of 41 OFFLINE   Richard Gallagher

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Posted September 14 2013 - 10:48 PM

The loss of satellite subscribers appears to be predominantly a problem for Dish network. As of June 30 DirecTV had 20.02 million subscribers, compared to 19.91 million subscribers at the end of June, 2012.


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#8 of 41 OFFLINE   ManW_TheUncool

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Posted September 16 2013 - 11:20 PM

I've only ever had the "cord" for several months to try out HD on cable when we bought our 1st (big) HDTV back when they still made CRT-based RPTVs (over 10 years ago) -- well, that and when I was sharing an apt in college.

 

Just never really felt like it was worth the price to me particularly if/when OTA is readily available.  Maybe if they offered affordable a la carte pricing for a few specific channels I might care about -- almost tried Dish at some points, especially some 10 years ago when they had some sort of exclusive on the YES network (and the Yankees broadcasts), but just wasn't compelling enough to me.

 

Plan on finally helping my mother cut the cord very soon -- probably as soon as Aereo makes non-stop/continuous viewing (of a chosen channel vs only on program-by-program basis) available on their service.  She'll be running Aereo, NF and Amazon Prime (and whatever else) via a Roku (or two) over 3Mbps broadband -- currently w/ Verizon's DSL service.  She only kept (basic) cable for the locals -- OTA doesn't work well enough to her liking at her location.

 

Hmmm... Maybe I should finally redeem the small batch of UV codes I've collected w/ BD purchases so my mother can watch them via Vudu on her Roku, if she wants -- not sure any of those flix interest her though (and they're probably on NF or Amazon Prime anyway)...

 

 

I think a big part of the problem for them now is there are just so many more options out there drawing people away from traditional TV viewing.  Their whole entertainment model is no longer the big fish in the pond anymore.  They have to contend w/ social media among others, not just NF/Hulu/streaming and the like...

 

_Man_


Edited by ManW_TheUncool, September 16 2013 - 11:54 PM.

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#9 of 41 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted September 17 2013 - 08:21 AM

Having worked for "satellite TV" for a total of 15 years(I was a DSS trainer back when it was new), the argument for "a la carte" is laughable.

Time Warner/Comcast/Fios/Uverse/Dish/Directv all have "a la carte" service.

It is called "business service". Sure, you can have it at home as well. Last I checked, ESPN by itself(you don't have to get "u" or even" 2") was $17.

Have fun with your "a la carte"

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#10 of 41 OFFLINE   Jim Mcc

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Posted September 17 2013 - 09:58 AM

I will never pay for TV again, whether it's cable or satellite. Talk about being bent over !!
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#11 of 41 OFFLINE   Ejanss

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Posted September 17 2013 - 11:51 AM

I will never pay for TV again, whether it's cable or satellite. Talk about being bent over !!

 

Well, you can still pay for Netflix/Hulu, they at least give you the option of NOT watching Honey Boo Boo.  :D



#12 of 41 OFFLINE   Keith Plucker

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Posted September 18 2013 - 07:09 AM

Having worked for "satellite TV" for a total of 15 years(I was a DSS trainer back when it was new), the argument for "a la carte" is laughable.

Time Warner/Comcast/Fios/Uverse/Dish/Directv all have "a la carte" service.

It is called "business service". Sure, you can have it at home as well. Last I checked, ESPN by itself(you don't have to get "u" or even" 2") was $17.

Have fun with your "a la carte"

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That seems like a very poor example. The reason the business rates are so high is the ridiculous "public performance" restrictions that are in place. Those restrictions were put there specifically so the rates can be jacked up because businesses like sports bars will have no choice but to pay the inflated prices.

 

But lets say most channels ended up at $15-$20 each. There would probably be some channels that people would consider paying those types of prices. However, many others would lose so many viewers at those rates that they would either cease to exist or be forced to lower prices.

 

-Keith


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#13 of 41 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted September 18 2013 - 07:43 AM

That seems like a very poor example. The reason the business rates are so high is the ridiculous "public performance" restrictions that are in place. Those restrictions were put there specifically so the rates can be jacked up because businesses like sports bars will have no choice but to pay the inflated prices.

 

But lets say most channels ended up at $15-$20 each. There would probably be some channels that people would consider paying those types of prices. However, many others would lose so many viewers at those rates that they would either cease to exist or be forced to lower prices.

 

-Keith

 

Those are the SmaTV rates. SmaTV is not public performance.

 

For those non-tech-speak people...

 

SmaTV* is hotels/apartment buildings where the owner/management of said building would like to provide certain channels on a per-room basis. Ergo, there is no "public performance" like a bar(totally different pricing strategy than SmaTV).

 

Your local BW3 probably pays $300/month, just for ESPN.

 

*SmaTV is the only "business plan" available to non-commercial addresses. SmaTV is also the only "true a la carte". With it, you can have your local NBC, but leave out ABC/CBS/Fox. Or provide ESPN but leave out 2 and U. This version can be tailored to the room Let's say you want SHO/CineMax etc in the living room and master bedroom. Good, done. You want ESPN in the living room only. Good, done. You want local channels and Disney only in the kids' rooms. Good, done. Just be sitting down when you see the prices per channel.

 

On "the bar version", it is still technically a la carte, but it is in packages, ie...all the locals. All the ESPN, All the Fox Sports. All the NBC Sports. All the Disney.



#14 of 41 OFFLINE   ManW_TheUncool

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Posted September 18 2013 - 07:53 AM

We can't easily know what real pricing would look like until there's an actual switch in business model at a large scale. and that hasn't happened so far.

Whatever you can get now is simply severely distorted by how things work now, not what they can realistically be.

_Man_

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#15 of 41 OFFLINE   Rob_Ray

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Posted September 18 2013 - 07:55 AM

I just made the leap to HDTV and am facing a choice -- upgrade to HD satellite service or pull the plug.  As an avid DVD and BluRay collector who only watches TCM, I have to decide if it's worth it to continue and as I see all the classic TV choices offered for free via over-the-air service, (Antenna, MeTV, etc.) I have to conclude that the $70 per month I spend on DirecTV can be better spent on other things.



#16 of 41 OFFLINE   ManW_TheUncool

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Posted September 18 2013 - 07:59 AM

Having said that, if a la carte pricing would still be sky high if the industry actually adopted it "honestly" and more fully, then that wouldn't be any worse than what it is now as far as I'm concerned. I just won't be their customer and will simply move on to better, more worthwhile things...

_Man_

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#17 of 41 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted September 18 2013 - 08:04 AM

I just made the leap to HDTV and am facing a choice -- upgrade to HD satellite service or pull the plug.  As an avid DVD and BluRay collector who only watches TCM, I have to decide if it's worth it to continue and as I see all the classic TV choices offered for free via over-the-air service, (Antenna, MeTV, etc.) I have to conclude that the $70 per month I spend on DirecTV can be better spent on other things.

 

I'll throw this one out there. Totally backwards than this thread says, but it is the truth.

 

Of all the sat/cable providers...DirecTV has the one thing everybody else wishes they had. Large bills. Not even counting "sports" tickets, DirecTV thrives because the avg customer pays $85/month. Nobody else is over $50/month.

 

In reality the only way to make cable/sat worth it....is to have every single channel. If you had every single channel you would be surprised how often you don't have to buy/rent a DVD or BD. But...how many people can afford $150-ish a month?

 

For that matter, those customers with "all the channels". Directv has more of those than every one else combined.



#18 of 41 OFFLINE   ManW_TheUncool

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Posted September 18 2013 - 08:21 AM

Of course, it's not that the current model doesn't work for anyone at all. It obviously does for some/many. But the rest of us, who seem to be growing in numbers, would like alternatives that suit us better.

_Man_

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"Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things..." (St. Paul)

#19 of 41 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted September 18 2013 - 08:30 AM

Of course, it's not that the current model doesn't work for anyone at all. It obviously does for some/many. But the rest of us, who seem to be growing in numbers, would like alternatives that suit us better.

_Man_

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Total agreement there. However you have some production companies that make their shows impossible to find after "first run", unless you wait for the re-run. Bad Robot sucks in that regard. 

 

The main reason I keep Directv? (which this would work with Dish and I presume at least some of the cable cos)

 

I use my iPad for streaming at the other two houses up here. My LG phone(now that it is updated to the latest Droid) now mirrors on everything...not just LG with WiDi(using a PTV). The last non-HDMI TV was removed from my uncles house. Bought a Polaroid 26" LCD for $75 at a garage sale.

 

If you travel much, or have multiple residences(which I do both)...there is no reason to dump pay services. Drop to basic, sure. But not to drop it.



#20 of 41 OFFLINE   David_B_K

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Posted September 18 2013 - 09:08 AM

Having worked for "satellite TV" for a total of 15 years(I was a DSS trainer back when it was new), the argument for "a la carte" is laughable.

Time Warner/Comcast/Fios/Uverse/Dish/Directv all have "a la carte" service.

It is called "business service". Sure, you can have it at home as well. Last I checked, ESPN by itself(you don't have to get "u" or even" 2") was $17.

Have fun with your "a la carte"

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It was not laughable back when I had a C-band dish. It's been 10 years, but I paid for the year what I pay now per month with DISH. The only reason I abandoned C-Band was that I could no longer find anyone to service the dish antenna. I have no hopes for a return to a la carte programming.

 

I could easily pull the plug were it not for my wife. She'd rather watch a rerun of something on DISH than pull out a disc and watch it. I could easily get by with half a dozen of the channels we're getting, or none of them.






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