Online TV Is Growing Too Slowly to Stop the Bleeding in Cable


The online TV market went from zero customers to almost 3 million in a couple years, but it still isn’t enough to make up for cord-cutting.

Sling TV, which went live with the first service in January 2015, has emerged as the leader with 1.7 million users, two people with knowledge of the matter said. The Dish Network Corp. offering, which starts with about 30 channels for $20 a month, is ahead of AT&T’s DirecTV Now and Sony’s PlayStation Vue — which had about 400,000 and 450,000 subscribers as of early April, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the numbers aren’t public.

For all their success, these skinny bundles of live channels delivered over the internet are looking more like a patch than a panacea for what ails pay TV. About 6 million subscribers have shut off their cable or satellite service since 2010, dropping their $80- or $90-a-month packages. New subscribers aren’t fully replacing the old ones and they’re paying less, meaning media companies will lose $13 billion in revenue over the next decade, according to Barclays. They’re probably not profitable for the companies selling them either.

The online TV market went from zero customers to almost 3 million in a couple years, but it still isn’t enough to make up for cord-cutting.

Sling TV, which went live with the first service in January 2015, has emerged as the leader with 1.7 million users, two people with knowledge of the matter said. The Dish Network Corp. offering, which starts with about 30 channels for $20 a month, is ahead of AT&T’s DirecTV Now and Sony’s PlayStation Vue — which had about 400,000 and 450,000 subscribers as of early April, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the numbers aren’t public.

For all their success, these skinny bundles of live channels delivered over the internet are looking more like a patch than a panacea for what ails pay TV. About 6 million subscribers have shut off their cable or satellite service since 2010, dropping their $80- or $90-a-month packages. New subscribers aren’t fully replacing the old ones and they’re paying less, meaning media companies will lose $13 billion in revenue over the next decade, according to Barclays. They’re probably not profitable for the companies selling them either.

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Source:: Advertising Age Digital

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