More than 1 million Americans decided they were fed up with their traditional cable packages, while the number of Canadians cutting the cord increased by 80 percent in 2015, nearly doubling the figure from 2014.
Consumers are unsubscribing from traditional cable television packages, opting instead for streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and HBO Now.
According to an annual report titled “The Battle for the North American (US/Canada) Couch Potato,” 2016 doesn’t look like the trend is showing any signs of slowing.
“We estimate 2015 saw a decline of 1.131 million US TV subscribers, 2014 saw a decline of 283,000, and we forecast a decline of 1.112 million TV subscribers for 2016,” the report reads, noting that more money is still generated by cable subscriptions. “We estimate Cable, Satellite, Telco TV access revenue grew 3 percent to $105 billion in 2015 and forecast $107 billion for 2016. In contrast, we estimate OTT access revenue (from CBS, HBO, Hulu, Lifetime, Netflix, Noggin, PlayStation, Seeso, Showtime, Sling, Starz, Tribeca) grew 29 percent to $5.1 billion in 2015 and we forecast $6.7 billion for 2016.”
In Canada, roughly 105,000 consumers cut ties with their cable provider in 2014 and that number shot up to 190,000 the following year.
The growth in cord cutters mirrors the growth of the most popular movie and TV streaming service Netflix, which currently boasts 57.4 million subscribers and added 4.33 million in the last quarter of 2015.
Netflix has been steadily adding more original series including critic favorites such as Master of None and more loathed shows such as Love to add to its roster of award winning shows such as House of Cards and Orange is the New Black that are big hits with U.S. audiences.
However, the report notes that much of the service’s growth may be leveling off in North America given that its biggest areas of growth is in international audiences.