Future of Cable TV

May 8th, 2014 at 3:51:52 AM permalink
Fleastiff
Member since: Oct 27, 2012
Threads: 50
Posts: 5124
From Nielson.com via slashdot:

Since 2008, the number of cable TV channels offered as a bundle rose from 129 to 189 in 2013, but in that time-frame viewers have consistently only watched an average of 17 channels. The data seems to support the notion that consumers are better off subscribing to channels a la carte, but cable companies are of the opinion that 'the price of cable TV wouldn't change much if channels were served à la carte because content providers won't sell the most popular programs to cable
May 8th, 2014 at 5:16:06 AM permalink
AZDuffman
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 103
Posts: 7134
Quote: Fleastiff
From Nielson.com via slashdot:

Since 2008, the number of cable TV channels offered as a bundle rose from 129 to 189 in 2013, but in that time-frame viewers have consistently only watched an average of 17 channels. The data seems to support the notion that consumers are better off subscribing to channels a la carte, but cable companies are of the opinion that 'the price of cable TV wouldn't change much if channels were served à la carte because content providers won't sell the most popular programs to cable


189 channels boggles the mind. Of the 17 I would wager that it means 17 have say 80% of the market, but the average person watches 5-6.

It has been obvious for years that the consumer is better off ala carte. The current system is for channel providers. Want ESPN? Well you gotta take ESPN2, ESPNEWS, and ESPN Classic. Want Food Network? You gotta take the sister channel. On and on. A new channel has little marginal cost to the providers. A studio or two at most, some new logo cards, and the rest is the same content for the most part.

Cut the GD cord I say!
The man who damns money has obtained it dishonorably; the man who respects it has earned it
May 8th, 2014 at 9:21:20 AM permalink
Pacomartin
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 753
Posts: 8881
Quote: AZDuffman
189 channels boggles the mind. Of the 17 I would wager that it means 17 have say 80% of the market, but the average person watches 5-6.

It has been obvious for years that the consumer is better off ala carte.





My cable company says 225 channels in their advertising (but 45 are music channels). That leaves 180. But only 70 channels are in High Definition so they have another 70 channels in standard definition that are the same content. So there are 40 channels that are only in standard definition. These are government channels, old TV, religious channels, etc.

Effectively there are only 70 channels, of which maybe 20 are retransmission of broadcast channels. So there are really about 50 cable channels.

I believe that most people don't watch 2/3 of those channels. But cutting them down by a factor of 3 is no guarantee costs will go down. The remaining channels can easily raise fees.
May 8th, 2014 at 9:57:41 AM permalink
AZDuffman
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 103
Posts: 7134
The argument the cable providers and cable channels both make is that you get a "bulk disount" of some sort and ala carte prices would raise fees overall.

I say rubbish.

Limbaugh was doing this topic on a show maybe 10 years ago. I remember because of how he summed up the argument of the cable industry in one sentence. Paraphrased he said,

"Their argument seems to be that 'all these little channels had to compete on their own merits nobody would watch them, so hence then need to be bundled so they have a subscriber base.'"

IOW: We have to make you subscribe otherwise you would never subscribe. (Sound like anything?!?!)

I expect that in 5-7 years people will be cutting the cord at a point that cable will lose 1/3 to 1/2 their subscribers. While it will be too late, they will try stripped-down packages, move ESPN to a premium tier, or even ala carte options.

But it will be too late. Some channel will offer a streaming, "netflix" version of itself. Candidates are Food Network, History, A&E, and some others. Once you start binge-watching that is how you watch, live cable seems so 1990s, DVRs so 2000s. Just let me pick.

News channels may offer the same content online as on-air. In the end they will HAVE TO. As cable subscribers die off faster than new ones reach adulthood their growth will depend on it.

There was once value in having a cable channel like you might keep an old store in a good mall---if you close you lose the lease but in a few years you might be able to sell the spot or rebrand (Remember "The Nashville Network?") No more. It is going to streaming.
The man who damns money has obtained it dishonorably; the man who respects it has earned it
May 8th, 2014 at 12:41:27 PM permalink
Evenbob
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 111
Posts: 12175
I watch 6 channels on a semi regular basis. Fox,
A&E, History, Disc, Food Network, and TV Land.
I have access to over 200. I watch no network
TV at all. After 10pm it's Netflix only.
If you take a risk, you may lose. If you never take a risk, you will always lose.
May 8th, 2014 at 4:42:03 PM permalink
Pacomartin
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 753
Posts: 8881
Quote: Evenbob
I watch 6 channels on a semi regular basis. Fox, A&E, History, Disc, Food Network, and TV Land. I have access to over 200. I watch no network TV at all. After 10pm it's Netflix only.


Dish aims to launch Web TV service by year's end

Dish says it plans to launch its Internet-delivered TV service by year's end for about $20 to $30 a month. It will contain live sports, entertainment and children's programming. Dish and The Walt Disney Co. signed a deal in March that made live ESPN, ABC and Disney Channel streams available for such a service.
It is expected to have 20 to 30 channels.

The dishNET High-Speed Internet you can purchase Internet speeds up to 10 mbps via satellite which is sufficient to watch Netflix on at least one device. I don't know how many it can handle.

It's not clear what the bundled service will cost, but you can add Walmart VOIP phone for another $10.
May 9th, 2014 at 1:18:11 AM permalink
1nickelmiracle
Member since: Mar 5, 2013
Threads: 16
Posts: 549
Quote: Evenbob
I watch 6 channels on a semi regular basis. Fox,
A&E, History, Disc, Food Network, and TV Land.
I have access to over 200. I watch no network
TV at all. After 10pm it's Netflix only.
I mainly watch TNT or Comedy Central. Sometimes SYFY. Rarely cnn or msnbc. Fox news rarely just in the early morning to see the blonds with the waxed legs hoping for a close-up.
May 9th, 2014 at 12:54:29 PM permalink
Evenbob
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 111
Posts: 12175
I like Neil Cavuto at 4, The Five at 5, and Bret
Baier has the best news on TV at 6. It's because
of the panel in the last 20min. George Will,
Charles Krauthammer, c'mon. And O'reilly at
8. That's it for Fox and me.
If you take a risk, you may lose. If you never take a risk, you will always lose.
May 9th, 2014 at 1:38:32 PM permalink
Pacomartin
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 753
Posts: 8881
I still think that if Comcast purchases Timewarner, and gets control of 30 million TV households, they will sell a less expensive product that is internet plus their own channels.
  • NBC Broadcasting
  • NBC Sports
  • NBC News
  • MSNBC
  • CNBC
  • Comcast Sports Group
  • Golf Channel
  • Syfy
  • Chiller
  • Cloo
  • E!
  • USA Network
  • Bravo Media
  • Oxygen Media
  • Sprout
  • Universal HD
  • Telemundo
  • mun2

    Joint Ventures
  • Esquire Network
  • TVOne
  • The Weather Channel


    I have had trouble finding anyone else who thinks they will do such a thing,

May 9th, 2014 at 1:58:48 PM permalink
Evenbob
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 111
Posts: 12175
Quote: Pacomartin
I still think that if Comcast purchases Timewarner, and gets control of 30 million TV households, they will sell a less expensive product that is internet plus their own channels.
  • NBC Broadcasting
  • NBC Sports
  • NBC News
  • MSNBC
  • CNBC
  • Comcast Sports Group
  • Golf Channel
  • Syfy
  • Chiller
  • Cloo
  • E!
  • USA Network
  • Bravo Media
  • Oxygen Media
  • Sprout
  • Universal HD
  • Telemundo
  • mun2

    Joint Ventures
  • Esquire Network
  • TVOne
  • The Weather Channel


I watch none of those and got no plans..
If you take a risk, you may lose. If you never take a risk, you will always lose.