Although the risk of true cord cutting is low, the greater risk is to traditional linear TV as the first source consumers turn on when they’re looking for something to watch.
Boston, Massachusetts (PRWEB) August 12, 2014
As the debate about cord cutting rages on, there is mounting evidence that online TV sources are most often a supplement to “traditional” cable or satellite TV rather than a replacement.
Hub Entertainment Research’s annual “What’s TV Worth” study uncovered two important developments among TV viewers with broadband access:
- Pay TV customers who rely solely on traditional TV subscription are now the exception rather than the rule. Three quarters (73%) of pay TV subscribers with broadband watch at least some online TV content, and only 27% saying they don’t watch online at all.
- At the same time, online streamers aren’t forsaking traditional TV—quite the opposite. Among those who subscribe to Netflix, Hulu Plus, or Amazon Prime, nearly all (85%) also have service from a cable, satellite, or telco TV provider.
One key trend: In the absence of an à la carte option from the pay TV industry, TV consumers are using online sources to create an extraordinary variety of do-it-yourself bundles. The average pay TV customer uses 2.1 online TV sources in addition to their pay TV. But they don’t appear to have found a “silver bullet”—on the contrary, even the most common “DIY” bundles are used by only a handful of customers.
- Most common: Pay TV service plus Netflix alone (10% of pay TV subscribers)
- Ranked second: Pay TV service plus TV network sites or apps alone (8%)
- Ranked third: Pay TV service plus both TV network sites/apps AND free content from Hulu (4%)
- The research identified more than 100 other unique combinations of traditional and online TV sources. None of them was used by any more than 4% of consumers.
“Mainstream consumers are now fully sold on the idea of online sources as a way to access the TV content they love, at the time and on the screen they choose,” said Jon Giegengack, Principal at Hub Research. “Although the risk of true cord cutting is low, the greater risk is to traditional linear TV as the first source consumers turn on when they’re looking for something to watch.”
“At the same time, there’s huge variety in the TV bundles consumers are creating,” said Peter Fondulas, co-founder of Hub. “Even the most common providers, like Netflix, are almost always used in conjunction with others. In fact, no one brand has established itself as a ‘one stop shop’ for television—and that now includes Pay TV brands.”
About this research:
The 2014 “What’s TV Worth” study was conducted among 1500 TV consumers with broadband internet access, aged 16-64. Findings from the study are available from Hub’s website, http://www.hubresearchllc.com.