Are Millennials Really Leaving Cable?

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Are millennials really leaving cable? Well, that’s a good question and the answer is rather complex. Often times when new technology occurs – it’s perceived as and evolution, rather than a revolution.  For example, there are still tons of people who have a landline even though their cellular phone offers everything they need.  This shows that human nature tends to stick with what is familiar, rather than not wanting it or understanding the technology.

This is most likely why many have refrained from what is called ‘cord-cutting’, meaning leaving cable completely and favoring streaming services.  Although most streaming services offer every television program you could ever want for cheaper prices, people have still been rather hesitant to give up cable.

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Perhaps these people are simply stubborn or don’t see a need to fix a problem they don’t see as existing. According to statistics, major TV providers lost a great deal more of subscribers in 2015 than 2014, however, the rates are still shockingly low and do not really affect the industry in a significant way.

Cable itself will not go die due to current subscribers leaving, however, the major providers should still be worried. What they should really fear is not the loss of current customers, but rather the future ones.  Millennials, known as the people who become young adults around the time of the 2000s are favoring streaming services more and more, and are ready to ‘cut the cord’. All that is really important to this group of people is that they what they want accessible to them at a low price.  

Research from the Limelight Networks shows that almost 80% of millennials in the U.S are subscribed to at least one streaming service. This is a 68% increase from 2015 and is 61% higher compared to other age groups.  Furthermore, millennials have been proven to subscribe to more than one streaming service.

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Since such a large percentage of the population is using at least one of these services, Millennials are very evidently making a significant impact on streaming video.  In addition, the percentage of this specific demographic of people watching over 10 hours per week of television is going up. This trend is only gaining popularity and will inevitably affect traditional cable use. As consumers want more, they will have to adapt accordingly.

The cable industry has what to worry about, since not only are Millennials moving towards streaming technology, but also nearby 90% of Millennials have testified that they would be willing to cut the cord if the circumstances were correct. What this means is that if they were able to directly subscribe to their favorite channels, or if the price continues to increase, they would drop their cable subscription in a heartbeat.

Cable does not seem as though it will stop raising its price, and since content becomes increasingly available through streaming every year, it seems as though the cable industry should be ready for millennials to cut the cord, or even never get cable to begin with.

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It must be understood that this a very slow change that is occurring. Traditional cable’s fall may not happen. The cable industry has slowly been learning to adapt to what millennials really want, for example offering smaller packages of channels at a lower cost, and even make streaming services easier to access.  However, if they do not pick things up, then the younger generation has proven that it knows how to get based any types of restriction on accessing content they want. Cable needs to change, or when millennials move into their own households and start their own families, they simply will not subscribe to cable.  The process of cord-cutting has been slow indeed, however research shows that this is not too far from the future.

Cable needs to change, or when millennials move into their own households and start their own families, they simply will not subscribe to cable.  The process of cord-cutting has been slow indeed, however research shows that this is not too far from the future.

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