PwC: US cord-cutting slowing

Cord-cutting in the US is less than forecast and fewer users see themselves dropping pay-TV in the future, according to a survey by PwC in the US.

Entitled Videoquake 4.0: Binge, Stream, Repeat – How Video Is Changing Forever, the report says says 84 per cent of pay-TV subscribers say they expect to still subscribe to cable one year from now. That’s up from 70 per cent in the 2015 study.

Among the consumers who trimmed the TV bundles—cord shavers —51 per cent say they now pay more for video programming than they did a year ago. Compared to 2015, 42 per cent of all US consumers said they are paying more now for video.

PwC says that streaming services will continue to grow as additions, not replacements, to pay-TV packages. The availability of more great content in more formats may not be the death of traditional pay TV but rather the beginning of a world in which pay TV is merely one among many video services consumers use.

The report found that 76 per cent of consumers say they are watching more video on mobile devices than a year ago and that 60 per cent said that their phone was the primary place they watched video. That includes short-form video as well as TV shows and full-length films.

For younger consumers, the amount of mobile viewing is even higher with 70 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds saying the phone is their main source of video. Among those young viewers 72 per cent say they watch TV shows on mobile devices and 80 per cent say they watch on mobile devices at home.

PwC identified a group that streams video at least 12 hours a week. These “super streamers” represent about 10 per cent of all viewers, but their consumption makes them important targets for the TV industry. The super streamers say they are trying to keep up with more shows than a year ago, and 54 per cent say they binge watch their favorite shows, compared to 24 per cent of consumers overall. The majority of these super streamers are cord-cutters, cord nevers and cord trimmers, while 39 per cent subscribe to traditional TV.

PwC surveyed over 1,200 consumers.

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