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A Repeat Performance for Cable TV 3Q22

Traditional cable providers in the United States continue to lose cable TV customers at the same fast pace as the second quarter of the year. In the third quarter, the cable companies list 1.68 million customers after losing over 1.65 million customers in the second quarter.

These numbers come from Leichtman Research Group, which compiles most of these numbers from the statistics provided to stockholders, except for Cox, which is privately held and estimated. Leichtman says this group of companies represents 96% of all traditional U.S. cable customers.

2Q 2022ChangeChange
Comcast16,582,000(562,000)-3.3%
Charter15,291,000(204,000)-1.3%
DirecTV13,500,000(400,000)-2.9%
Dish Network7,607,000(184,000)-2.4%
Verizon3,383,000(96,000)-2.8%
Cox3,140,000(90,000)-2.8%
Altice2,491,800(82,400)-3.2%
Mediacom525,000(15,000)-2.8%
Frontier322,000(21,000)-6.1%
Breezeline323,038(9,274)-2.8%
Cable ONE202,000(19,000)-8.6%
Total63,366,838(1,682,674)-2.6%
Hulu Live4,400,000400,00010.0%
Sling TV2,211,000214,0009.7%
FuboTV1,231,000284,26530.0%
Total Cable39,536,512(981,674)-2.5%
Total Telco / Satellite25,513,000(701,000)-2.7%
Total vMvPD7,143,735898,26512.6%

The losses are fairly even across the industry, with every large provider except Charter losing more than 2% of total cable customers for the quarter. At the current pace, the industry might lose 10% of all cable customers this year. To put these numbers into perspective, these same companies had over 85 million cable customers at the end of 2018—the industry has lost over a quarter of its customers since then.

In the quarter, the three online cable alternatives that LRG tracks gained almost 900,000 new customers for the quarter, A few major online alternatives, like YouTube TV, aren’t on the list since they don’t announce customer counts.

The biggest percentage of losers continues to be Frontier and Cable ONE, with Comcast being the third largest.

By Doug Dawson, President at CCG Consulting

Dawson has worked in the telecom industry since 1978 and has both a consulting and operational background. He and CCG specialize in helping clients launch new broadband markets, develop new products, and finance new ventures.

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