MarketWatch: More people subscribe to a streaming service than they do cable TVJuly 14, 2017 | By Fluent
Publication date 7/9/2017
Nearly 8 million U.S. households have ditched their cable subscriptions in the past 5 years
The takeover that streaming was promised is finally here.
There are now more people who subscribe to or use a streaming service than have a cable subscription. According to a report from data-driven marketing firm Fluent LLC, 67% of internet-using Americans watch content via a streaming service vs. 61% of people who have a cable subscription. There’s an overlap of people who subscribe to both.
Internet streaming and media consumption have been on the verge of breaking loose for years.
Last year music streaming generated the bulk of the music industry’s revenue for the first time. Thanks in large part to companies like Spotify AB and Apple Inc.’s AAPL, +0.94% Apple Music, music industry revenue saw its first significant growth in more than a decade.
A recent Cisco report forecasts that by 2021 video will make up 82% of all traffic on the internet.
And within six months, ad spending on the internet will surpass traditional TV, according to Kleiner Perkins partner Mary Meeker’s annual internet Trends report.
According to Fluent’s report, which surveyed more than 2,000 internet-using adults (18 and older) in the U.S., 73% of people who had cable at one point had cut the cord, while 27% said they never had cable. That number is higher among millennials.
Research from MoffettNathanson found that over the past five years, nearly 8 million U.S. households have fled traditional cable or simply avoided ever subscribing to begin with.
The most popular streaming service people flee to is Netflix Inc. NFLX, -0.47% Nearly half of all Fluent respondents said they subscribe to the service. A recent report from Digital TV Research that was published by Research and Markets forecasts that Netflix’s paid subscriber base could reach 128 million by 2022.
Amazon.com Inc. AMZN, -0.60% and Hulu — a joint venture by Comcast Corp. CMCSA, +0.55% Walt Disney Co. DIS, +0.53% 21st Century Fox Inc. FOXA, -2.97% and Time Warner Inc. TWX, -0.36% — were neck-in-neck with 16% of people saying they use the services, followed by Alphabet Inc.-owned GOOGL, +0.61% YouTube Red’s 11% share. Time Warner’s HBO Go was popular among 10% of survey respondents.
More than 34% of people said low cost was the main factor in opting for a streaming service and for millennials the convenience of watching whenever and wherever was important for 29% of them, while 21% of nonmillennials said the same. And original content, which has been of increasing importance for companies, was a deciding factor for 18% of all respondents. Only 7% were interested in syndicated content.
More platforms and companies are investing in streaming video, looking to capitalize on internet video. Social-media giants Facebook Inc. FB, +0.38% and Twitter Inc. TWTR, -0.10% have signed deals with professional sports leagues to boost video views. According to Fluent’s survey, 35% of people said they would likely stream content on Facebook. Millennials were more willing, with 44% saying they would. About 17% of respondents said they would stream video on Snap Inc.’s SNAP, +3.94% Snapchat and 15% said they would give Twitter a shot.