Thousands of households are doing whatever is necessary to reduce their monthly expenses. “Cutting the cord” these days just seems the thing to do, because cable costs continue to soar, offering very little entertainment compared to the Internet. Cord cutting is causing major concern among conventional cable providers and they are fighting back by trying to force consumers to invest in what they call a “bundle package, which includes cable, the Internet, and landline at a significantly lower cost. While this seems reasonable to some consumers, others are turning their head and moving forward by cutting the cord.
Pay TV Subs Falling
According to a recent study conducted by Digital TV Research, pay TV subs in the United States and Canada (North America) will fall by an estimated 10 million by 2022. This is a significant reduction, but not really enough to cause too much concern for cable providers. As of 2012, there were an estimated 112 million cable subscribers, which is expected to drop to about 102 million by 2022.
A nine percent decline does not indicate a major cord-cutting issue. While some of those people are choosing to cut the cord, they are turning to streaming services for entertainment and news. While streaming services are rather affordable, many consumers will hold several subscriptions from various providers. For instance, one consumer will be paying for Netflix, Hulu, and Pandora, a music streaming service.
When you consider that the consumer is paying for four different services, which will add up to around $40 a month, give or take a few cents, this does not seem like much of a saving since a limited basic TV cable package will only cost on average $20 a month.
In 2009, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) required cable systems to switch from analog to digital. This is a major problem for some consumers since they owned an analog TV. The transition was not that difficult, but at the time consumers found it to be, so instead of making the switch, some people decided to go ahead and discontinue their cable subscription.
Instead of investing in a digital television, they decided to save their money and buy an over-the-air (OTT) antenna, which was absolutely free to operate. The antenna just plugged directly into a port on the existing TV, so the installation process was a breeze. A household could receive anywhere from 5 to 10 channels with the OTT antenna, which is pretty amazing when you consider the service does not come attached to a monthly cable bill.
Simultaneously, consumers are now able to obtain access to live news, video clips, and other information directly from the websites of the major news networks. Anand Mishra ITV Network is a part of Tathastu Information Technology, which is receiving funding from Information TV. Mishra and his IT firm have built websites for some of India’s biggest news channels, including NewsX and India News. These websites provide consumers with lightning fast access to the latest news, with no subscription fee.
Consumers that choose to cut the cord are facing some limitations and obstacles. They would not have access to mainstream media outlets or television series, so instead of doing without completely, they turn to streaming services offered by different independent providers on YouTube.
Cutting the cord is a great option for households that are trying to reduce their monthly expenses. However, you must be willing to make sacrifices to earn the savings, which may be a bit much to ask young children, adolescents and young adults living in the home.