Wednesday, May 22, 2019
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Multiscreen Index: Top 10 U.S. Pay-TV Providers Shed 1.28 Million Subs


The top 10 television service providers in the U.S. collectively lost more than 1.25 million TV subscribers in the first quarter of 2019, according to the latest figures from the informitv Multiscreen Index.

The top 10 services for the U.S. in the Multiscreen Index now have 81.9 million TV customers between them, accounting for slightly less than 70 percent of television homes.

AT&T moved to the top of the list, with 22.36 million premium TV subscribers in the U.S., as it now combines the results for DIRECTV and AT&T U-verse. It also sustained the greatest subscriber losses, losing 544,000 premium customers and a further 89,000 from its DIRECTV NOW online offering. DISH Network lost a further 259,000 television subs.

Altice USA consolidated the reporting of its Optimum and Suddenlink operations, with a combined loss of 10,200 TV subscribers, compared to 15,300 the previous quarter, for a total of 3.3 million.

Comcast cable TV customers declined 107,000, compared to 19,000 the previous quarter, marking its eighth consecutive quarterly loss, down 358,000 year on year to 20.85 million.

Charter Spectrum shed 152,000, compared to a loss of 36,000 the previous quarter, and was down 327,000 year on year to 15.95 million.

DISH Network lost 266,000 satellite TV subs, compared to 381,000 the previous quarter, marking a loss of 1.21 million in 12 months. Sling TV gained 7,000 online subscribers, with a total of 2.42 million, so total TV subscribers were 12.06 million, down by 259,000.

Verizon Fios saw a loss of 53,000 TV subscribers, a slight increase on 46,000 the previous quarter and down by just under 200,000 over the year.

Frontier re-entered the top 10, with 780,000 television subscribers, as a result of the consolidation of reporting by other operators, but lost 54,000 television customers in the quarter.

Also returning to the top 10 is Mediacom, with 760,000 TV customers, down by 12,000 in the quarter.

(Cox Communications is not included in the top 10 as it does not report subscriber numbers.)

Dr. William Cooper, the editor of the informitv Multiscreen Index, said: “There were losses across the top 10 television services in the United States, with even the DIRECTV NOW online service losing customers following previous heavy promotion. Between them, they lost over one-and-a-quarter million subscribers in three months. They still command a significant number of customers but the rate of attrition has increased.”

About Kristin Brzoznowski

Kristin Brzoznowski is the executive editor of World Screen. She can be reached at


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