Even Cable TV Providers Realize TV Is Over

Even Cable TV Providers Realize TV Is Over

Smaller cable providers are waking up to the fact that cable TV itself is irrelevant while focusing on the actually relevant and desired broadband Internet. This is the smart way forward and plays to the reality of our world instead of clinging to the past.

As BGR sums up:

Big providers like Comcast and Time Warner Cable may want to cling to the past but it looks like smaller cable providers seem to know that cord cutting is actually the future.The Wall Street Journal reports that smaller cable providers are increasingly placing more emphasis on their broadband offerings and less on TV packages as consumers have shown that they would much rather have a faster Internet service than hundreds of channels they never watch.

I’ve included the graph from the WSJ above which shows the trend in black and white. The cable industry is losing TV subscribers and gaining broadband subscribers. This is, in my opinion, the only future revenue stream for cable, streaming from a dumb pipe is over for the reasons we’ve listed in the past. The Internet renders the entire concept of paying for a dumb pipe of just video not only irrelevant, but as of now essentially a tax on the tech illiterate.

We’ve said this before but we’ll say it again because everyone brings this up every time we talk about TV: sports are the last reason some choose to still pay for TV. But the cable bundle will start to unravel as soon as ESPN and the sports networks realize they can go direct to consumer and bypass the old user-hostile model. It’s a matter of time.

It’s just the aging demographic who are too conditioned (and oddly, fearful) to cut the cord and the monopoly / legacy providers left that care about cable TV.

Also smartly, Mike at Techdirt shares why we need to pay attention regarding the larger cable providers fighting against the future:

While we don’t hear it that much any more, a decade ago, the talk of the industry was the vaunted “triple play” offering: “voice, video and data.” Some analysts would add in a fourth item of “wireless” to make a “grand slam” (mixing up their baseball metaphors). But as we’ve been saying for a decade, that was always misleading: “voice and video” are data. You don’t need “voice, video and data.” You just need “data.” Wireless is just a way to deliver the data. But the internet enables all of those things. The greater access that can be offered at greater speeds, unencumbered, the less specialized services for “voice and video” matter. The traditional phone business is already on the way out. Video is next. These small players leaving the video business are just an early warning shot, just like the cord cutters.

It’s all data.

But this is also why the net neutrality fight is so important — and why the big players like Comcast (while pretending otherwise) are so desperate to control things and block true net neutrality. The longer the big old media companies can keep the highly inefficient system of cable TV alive, the more money it can squeeze out of it — and there’s a LOT of money being squeezed. It won’t die any time soon, but it will die off. That’s just the natural progression of things when you realize that it’s all just data, and a pipe that is optimized just to “deliver data” is always going to win out in the end.


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