Pay-TV didn’t lose 400,000 subscriptions last quarter – it’s more like 425,000

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Cable TV Subscriber Stats Q2 2012

A report on Thursday suggested that 400,000 American homes cut the cord last quarter, ditching cable and satellite television services to get their home entertainment elsewhere. A number of people argued that the massive figure didn’t account for the 275,000 subscribers that switched to AT&T’s (T) U-Verse and Verizon’s (VZ) FiOS service. What Reuters’s figure also doesn’t account for, however, is the estimated 280,000-300,000 subscribers Charter (CHTR) and Cablevision (CVC) are expected to report having lost during the second quarter.

Assuming that figure comes in close to the high end of estimates, which is likely, pay-TV in the U.S. will have shed approximately 425,000 net subscribers in the second quarter.

As AllThingsD points out, however, much of those losses can likely be attributed to temporary disconnects such as college students moving back home for the summer. In 2011, the site says pay-TV services shed 442,000 subscribers in the second quarter but recovered later in the year to finish with a net positive 200,000 additions.

The bad news for traditional cable companies, however, is that all of that growth went to telco services like U-Verse and FiOS, leaving traditional cable TV service providers with net losses.

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