Your phone and cable company could charge you a lot less than they do right now and still make a healthy profit. We know this because whenever you call up and threaten to cancel your service because it’s too expensive, they almost always offer you a better deal immediately. However, haggling with your phone or cable company for lower prices takes time and patience, which is why I was intrigued to see The New York Times’ new report on a company called BillFixers that does all the hard work for you in exchange for taking half of the yearly savings you get. More →
While cable providers over the past few decades have grown fat off of exorbitant cable packages that overcharge and under-deliver, the rise of streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Video are finally righting the ship and shifting the balance of power towards the consumer. Clearly, the cable industry is in the midst of a transition.
Netflix in particular, with its ever-growing stable of original content, has proven to be a particularly painful thorn in the side of cable providers who are increasingly struggling to keep subscribers from cutting the cord.
The ongoing fight for the collective viewing attention of consumers is absolutely fascinating to watch; not only are we in the midst of a highly competitive battle being waged by influential media giants, the outcome of the battle itself remains excitingly unpredictable. Sure, we know that streaming services from the likes of Netflix and HBO continue to grow in popularity, but a number of questions about what the media landscape will look like in even two years remains open to debate.
For instance, what can cable providers do to attract new customers and, just as important, keep existing ones? Will Apple’s rumored TV subscription service prove successful? Can Netflix continue churning out an endless stream of compelling and original content? Can Hulu, or perhaps Amazon, steal away a significant number customers from Netflix?
The traditional pay TV bundle is slowly dying. New data released by research firm SNL Kagan this week showed that pay TV services lost a total of 625,000 subscribers last quarter, which is the largest quarterly loss in the industry’s history. While the pay TV industry typically loses subscribers in the second calendar quarter ever year, this year’s losses absolutely dwarfed the 352,000 net customer loss that pay TV services posted in Q2 2014. More →
Cable companies love to call cord cutters an overhyped myth, but now these supposedly phantom TV fans are hurting the pay TV industry where it matters most. A new report in Nasdaq.com explains that major media companies have been taking a beating in their most recent earnings reports, which has spawned fears among investors that cord cutting is an irreversible trend that will permanently dent content providers’ ability to post ever-increasing profits. More →
Have you ever wondered why you have to pay for every channel under the sun when signing up for a cable TV subscription? If you spend most nights watching sports, chances aren’t great that you’ll be flipping back and forth between the NBA Finals and The Real Housewives of New York. So why are you paying for ESPN and Bravo? More →
Cable is amazing. For as much as people justifiably rag on cable providers, the actual content and breadth of channels is absolutely mesmerizing. When you toss DVR and on-demand functionality into the mix, there’s really never been a better time to be a TV and movie fan.
But cable is expensive, and cable providers, like most successful incumbents in any given industry, have failed to keep up with the times. Cable providers, by remaining dead set on preserving current revenue streams, simply haven’t adjusted to a marketplace where paying well over $100 a month for cable is increasingly falling out of favor with consumers, especially when a monthly Netflix subscription can get the job done for less than $10.
Apple’s online TV streaming service may be a shot across the bow of cable companies, but you shouldn’t expect the cable giants to take this threat lying down. CNBC says that Apple will be directly targeting cord cutters with its new TV service this fall, but it correctly notes that cable providers have a lot of tricks up their sleeves to slow down Apple and every other potential online TV streaming service. Below we’ve outlined the three biggest ones and rated how likely cable companies are to get away with them. More →
It used to be that cable companies could brush off the tiny minority of TV viewers who watched shows primarily over the Internet as a myth. However, The Washington Post reports on some new data from Nielsen that shows TV studios and cable companies have to start seeing cord cutting as a legitimate trend that is set to accelerate in the coming years.
Cable bills have been increasing at triple the rate of inflation and it’s a good bet that your wireless bill has shot up in recent years too thanks to the rise of mobile data plans. Rather Be Shopping, however, contends that lowering your bill for these services is surprisingly easy as long as you’re willing to play hardball with your service provider. More →
As if you didn’t already have enough reasons to cut the cord and rely on streaming services to get your TV fix, cable stations themselves are giving you another one. The Wall Street Journal reports that some cable stations have actually started speeding up their programs so they can squeeze more ads into their given time slots, which means that not only are characters on shows moving slightly faster, but their voices are slightly higher pitched as well. More →