Leaving cable behind by “cutting the cord” is something many Americans have been doing for awhile, with many alternatives in the form of streaming apps and antennas being more readily available. But it appears that more people have cut the cord this year than ever before, and cable companies may finally be starting to take notice.
A research firm by the name eMarkerter, which studies trends in digital businesses, has come to the conclusion that by the end of 2017 more than 22 million Americans will have cut the cord on their cable service. This is up 33% from last year’s cord cutters at 16.7 million, and this number is just expected to rise throughout 2018.
So what is leading to this massive number of cord cutting individuals? According to senior forecasting analyst for eMarketer, Chris Brendtsen, it has to do with the rising amount of younger individuals that have grown to watch television in a different manner than in the past.
“Younger audiences continue to switch to either exclusively watching over-the-top video or watching them in combination with free-TV options,” Brendtsen told Variety. According to Brendtsen, even the 2016 Olympics and presidential election were not enough for people to keep their cable packages, with many people electing to view these events online as well, or through the use of antennas.
This number of individuals that never had cable or will cut the cord looks to increase even more if this trend continues by the year 2021, where it is estimated that this number of adults without cable will average around 81 million. This would be roughly 30% of all Americans, meaning that nearly half of the country will have cut the cord.
Cable companies have taken notice of these recent trends, as many companies such as Dish and Comcast have started to combat other streaming services by starting their own. Is it too little too late for this, however?
Anything can change between now and 2021 as people and technology continue to evolve at a pace unlike that ever seen before. Should these numbers keep up at this pace, however, then cable companies will be in huge trouble.