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Top US Pay-TV Providers Lost 2.87M Subs in 2018

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DURHAM, N.H. -- Leichtman Research Group, Inc. (LRG) found that the largest pay-TV providers in the U.S. – representing about 95% of the market – lost about 2,875,000 net video subscribers in 2018, compared to a pro forma loss of about 1,510,000 subscribers in 2017.

The top pay-TV providers account for 89.1 million subscribers – with the top six cable companies having 47 million video subscribers, satellite TV services 29.1 million subscribers, the top telephone companies 9 million subscribers, and the top Internet-delivered (vMVPD) pay-TV services 4 million subscribers.

Key findings include:

  • Satellite TV services lost about 2,360,000 subscribers in 2018 – compared to a loss of about 1,550,000 subscribers in 2017

  • DIRECTV lost 1,236,000 subscribers in 2018 – compared to a loss of 554,000 subscribers in 2017. In 2018, DBS services cumulatively lost 7.5% of video subscribers – compared to a loss of 4.7% in 2017.

  • The top six cable companies lost about 910,000 video subscribers in 2018 – compared to a loss of about 680,000 subscribers in 2017.

  • In 2018, the top cable providers cumulatively lost 1.9% of video subscribers – compared to a loss of 1.4% in 2017.

  • The top telephone companies lost about 245,000 video subscribers in 2018 – compared to a loss of about 885,000 in 2017.

  • The top publicly reporting Internet-delivered (vMVPD) services, Sling TV and DIRECTV NOW, added about 640,000 subscribers in 2018 – compared to about 1,600,000 net adds in 2017.

  • Subscribers to these vMVPD services increased by 19% in 2018 – compared to an increase of 90% in 2017.

    Leichtman Research Group

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