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20% US pay-TV subs dissatisfied with service

Research from market research and consulting company Parks Associates reveals that 20 per cent of US pay-TV subscribers say they are dissatisfied with their pay-TV service, representing a 100 per cent increase since early 2013. The firm’s report – TV Services: Changing the Channel Package – indicates that only one-third of pay-TV subscribers are very satisfied with their pay-TV service, a drop from 57 per cent who indicated very high satisfaction levels in 2013.

“High satisfaction with pay-TV has dropped across all providers,” said Brett Sappington, Senior Director of Research, Parks Associates. “Telco services have seen the highest drop in highly satisfied customers compared to cable and satellite providers. The plummeting satisfaction levels ultimately affect service/channel package upgrades, cord cutting, engagement, and perception of operator-driven service changes (e.g., dropped or added channels).”

Five per cent of US broadband households have never subscribed to a pay-TV service, according to Parks Associates’ 360 View Update: Pay TV and the Reality of Cord Cutting. Adoption declines are most notable among younger heads of household; the average age of pay-TV subscribers is older now than in 2014.

“The pay-TV industry continues to experience worldwide growth, but the North American market is experiencing a decline in penetration,” advised Sappington. “A combination of factors, including high monthly fees and a wide selection of OTT services, are pushing consumers away from traditional pay-TV. Operators are now adjusting their strategies to address this new environment, including partnering with OTT video services or launching their own independent OTT services. Our research also shows that promotional options, including free or subsidised CPE, could entice potential Cord Cutters or Cord Shavers to keep their services.”

Over 63 million US broadband households subscribe to an OTT video service, and 36 per cent of US broadband households have at least one streaming media player. The firm announced the top 10 list of subscription OTT video services for the US market at the end of 2016, which included Netflix, Amazon Video (Amazon Prime), Hulu, MLB.TV, WWE Network, Sling TV, HBO Now, Crunchyroll, Showtime, and CBS All Access.

 

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