For the first time, online video streaming topped cable subscriptions in 2018, with streamers totaling 613.3 million, a steady lead over cable’s subscriber base of 556 million, according to a report published by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA). The full report (PDF) is available here.
Netflix leads the way in the increasingly crowded market which also includes Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, HBO, Sling TV, and other content providers or streaming services. Speaking of Netflix, the company became the first streaming service to join the MPAA – a likely strategy to fight online piracy, especially as the No. 1 service expands business overseas.
As noted by The Verge, however, cable subscriptions are still more lucrative than the streaming market:
“That said, despite that growth in streaming video and the small decrease in cable subscriptions, cable subscriptions still rake in the most money, increasing in 2018 by $6.2 billion to $118 billion. After cable subscriptions, satellite TV brings in the next highest amount of revenue, while streaming video comes in third. The report also notes that more Americans watch cable (80 percent) followed by streaming services (70 percent).”
If you’re thinking about cutting the cord, and adopting some streaming services, I wish you the best of luck. Surely you’ll be able to find some amazing TV shows and movies to find, though you may need to be ready to try a couple of different services. Successful cord cutting by dumping cable/satellite completely is no easy task. A topic that easily could span an entire tome of blog posts and articles, I will try to keep the explanations as simple as possible in the future.
Broadcasters and content providers are paying attention to the growing trend in viewers abandoning their pay TV packages. News giant CNN recently announced its channel would be available on Viacom’s free Pluto TV service – but don’t expect the live broadcast, which remains available only to cable or satellite subscribers and other authenticated services. Instead, a digital playlist from select CNN reporters will be available to free online viewers.