Pay-TV operators lost more subscribers than they added for the first time last year

Comcast buys Time Warner

The 13 largest multi-channel video providers in the U.S. (Comcast, DirecTV and Verizon FiOS, to name three), who make up roughly 94 percent of the market share, lost about 105,000 video subscribers in 2013 — a wide 280,000-subscriber swing from 2012’s addition of 175,000. Perhaps most directly responsible for this first-ever net loss is the increasingly out-of-control hemorrhaging of subscribers on the part of top cable companies: about 1.7 million customers cut their cords in 2013.

Despite the loss equaling only 0.1 percent of all subscribers, 2013 nonetheless marks the first year in which pay-TV giants actually came out with an overall year-end loss, according to a recent report by Leichtman Research Group. Cord-cutters the world over are muttering, “You have to start somewhere.”

Specifically, cable companies took the biggest hit — technically, the only hit to actually result in a net loss.

Top telephone service providers AT&T U-verse and Verizon FiOS, along with top satellite TV companies DirecTV and DISH, added a total of roughly 1.6 million new video subscribers in 2013; a total that counteracts the 1.7 million lost cable video subscribers. Thus, the total amount of subscribers among all top multi-channel video providers fell for the first time, by about 105,000, which, in the grand scheme of things, isn’t all that much. There are about 94.6 million total subscribers currently at stake with the aforementioned multi-channel video providers.

While the loss is far from monumental, it could be interpreted as a sign of the times. Those that are wary of the recent moves by big pay-TV players, such as the Comcast-Time Warner merge, may find solace in this report. Though it should be expected that any big changes will be incremental, It’s like trying to make a 180-degree turn with the Titanic: there might not appear to be any considerable progress at any one time, but it’s turning — slowly but surely.

Movies & TV

How Laika blends 3D printing and CGI to make mesmerizing stop-motion movies

With each film, Laika Studios pushes the bar higher for stop-motion animation. We explore Laika's latest techniques for its new adventure, Missing Link, which the studio it calls a Kaleidoscopic travelogue that ranks as its most ambitious…
Movies & TV

Netflix confirms it won’t be a part of Apple’s new video-streaming service

Netflix has confirmed that subscribers to Apple's new video streaming service won't have the option to view Netflix content on it. Apple is set to unveil its new TV service next week.
Home Theater

You can now watch four PlayStation Vue streams at once on a single Apple TV

PlayStation Vue subscribers can now watch March Madness in style via Apple TV, which can now stream up for four separate games to your TV at once, making it easy to catch all the on-court action.
Movies & TV

The best movies on Amazon Prime right now (March 2019)

Prime Video provides subscribers with access to a host of fantastic films, but sorting through the catalog can be an undertaking. Luckily, we've done the work for you. Here are the best movies on Amazon Prime Video right now.
Product Review

Gate’s Smart Lock is locked and loaded but ultimately lacks important basics

In a world of video cameras and doorbells comes the Gate Smart Lock, a lock with a video camera embedded. It’s a great idea, but lacks some crucial functionality to make it a top-notch product.
Home Theater

Need to get rid of an unused Netflix profile? Just follow these simple steps

Need to delete an unwanted profile from your Netflix account? It's easy to do, no matter what kind of equipment you've got. Check out our handy how-to guide for step-by-step instructions.
Deals

Amazon drops price of 65-inch Sony 4K Smart TV by $300 for March Madness

You can get a fantastic 65-inch Sony LED TV for $300 off right now, in what's best described as the perfect TV deal to lead you and your living room into this year's March Madness tournament.
Home Theater

Apple's Airpods 2 could be released as early as this week

Apple may release new AirPods in the first half of 2019. A wireless charging case, health sensors, water resistance, and better Siri integration are some of the improvements rumored to be part of the new package.
Home Theater

Smart speakers are about to get an IQ bump thanks to new Qualcomm chips

Qualcomm announced a new chipset that is designed to make the next generation of smart speakers sound, listen, and connect better than ever before, and it could soon be in your living room.
Home Theater

What year is this? Apple might drop a new iPod tomorrow

After two days of surprise hardware releases that have brought us new iPads and iMacs, rumor has it that we may see an update of Apple's iPod as soon as tomorrow, sparking a mixture of nostalgia and curiosity.
Home Theater

Dish TV customers can access up to 13 NCAA March Madness games in 4K

If you're a basketball fan looking to get your fix of NCAA Championship action in 4K, Dish TV will be airing up to 13 of the tournament games in the ultra high-def format, starting on Tuesday.
Movies & TV

Stranger Things season 3 teaser proclaims it's almost feeding time in Hawkins

With a sophomore season as strong as its first, Stranger Things is now moving on to season 3. Here's everything we've learned so far about the Netflix series' upcoming third season, premiering in July 2019.
Movies & TV

Disney completes its $71.3 billion purchase of 21st Century Fox

Now that Walt Disney Company has closed its $71.3 billion purchase of 21st Century Fox's movie and television assets, what does this future hold for franchises like X-Men, the Fantastic Four, The Simpsons, and the rest?
Home Theater

What’s new on Netflix and what movies and shows are leaving in April 2019

Our complete list of what's new on Netflix for April 2019 and which titles will be removed will help you catch up on your bingeing, and also ensure you don't miss any titles heading into the streaming ether.