Reports Video

US Cord Cutting Full Year 2018 Streaming Transition Picks Up Pace

Report by Tim Mulligan
Cover image for US Cord Cutting Full Year 2018
Synopsis PDF PowerPoint Excel

Get full access to this report and assets

Already a MIDiA client? Login here to view this report.

New to MIDiA? Get in touch with our client success specialists to purchase this report and gain a competitive edge today.

The 20,000 Foot View: Cord cutting is now an established component of the US pay-TV landscape, reinforcing the role of the US as the canary in the mine for the global pay-TV business. Cord cutting accelerated in 2018, highlighting the secular nature of the phenomenon. However, this is not simply a story of decline but instead one of transition, with streaming growing ­— in a wider sense — the total base of pay-TV subscribers. With ever more overlaps in consumer behaviour and segments across traditional pay-TV and streaming, all signs point to more of the same in 2019.

Key Findings

  • US cord            totalled            million in 2018, up                       million in 2017, representing a           
  • Satellite pay-TV            lost            million subscribers in 2018,            largest loss of subscribers and            the largest percentage change           
  • AT&T shed            most subscribers of any US            provider in 2018            million)
  •            of US cord cutters in            2018 were streaming video on demand (SVOD) users, illustrating that cord cutting is part of a technology transition
  • SVOD services                       million subscribers in 2018, pushing            combined pay-TV subscriber base to           
  • Half of            pay-TV subscribers in            2018 were            SVOD users 
  • Cord cutters            around eight times more likely            use HBO Now and CBS            Access than overall consumers
  • Hulu has            highest rate of cord cutting            by Amazon and then Netflix
  • Binge-watching consumers            more likely to become cord            making up            of cord cutters                       2018
  •            of cord shavers regularly watch sports on TV, illustrating that streaming-savvy sports fans are cutting back their pay-TV subscriptions to retain sports coverage

Companies and brands mentioned in this report:  Altice, Amazon Prime Video, AT&T, Atlantic Broadband, Cable ONE, Cablevision, CBS All Access, Charter Communications, Comcast, DirecTV, DISH Network, Frontier, HBO Now, Hulu, Mediacom, Netflix, Sling, Suddenlink, U-verse, Verizon Fios, YouTube