Nielsen: Number of homes subscribing to cable decreasing

Summary:Homes with broadband Internet and free, broadcast TV are becoming a growing trend, increasing by 22.8 percent during the last year, according to a new survey from Nielsen.

Americans are still watching plenty of TV programming (maybe too much for their own good), but how they're going about it is changing.

The migration from the traditional cable television setup to Internet-connected options (whether it be a computer, mobile device or just the TV itself) with streaming video subscriptions isn't happening drastically or overnight.

But the shifts in behavior and how people are spending their money on digital media is still significant.

According to a new survey from Nielsen Wire, homes with broadband Internet and free, broadcast TV are becoming a growing trend, increasing by 22.8 percent during the last year.

Sure, they represent only less than five percent of U.S. households with TVs, but Nielsen found that this demographic tended to stream video twice as much as the general population and watch half as much TV. That's a big deal for online advertisers as well as the content providers, whether it be the digital media services (i.e. Netflix) or the networks and movie studios.

Even more concerning for TV cable companies, the number of homes subscribing to wired cable has decreased 4.1 percent in the last year, while telephone company-provided and satellite TV subscriptions have seen increases of 21.1 percent and 2.1 percent, respectively.

Although the portion of households with both cable TV and broadband Internet subscriptions still hovers around 70 percent nationwide, that figure could change considerably given how many more (and cheaper) options consumers have these days.

Chart via Nielsen Wire


Topics: Networking, Google, PCs, Smartphones


Rachel King is a staff writer for CBS Interactive based in San Francisco, covering business and enterprise technology for ZDNet, CNET and SmartPlanet. She has previously worked for The Business Insider,, CNN's San Francisco bureau and the U.S. Department of State. Rachel has also written for, Irish Americ... Full Bio

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