With the emergence of streaming content providers such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu, there really doesn’t seem to be much of a reason to pay for a cable subscription anymore. Almost all the major networks (ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC) will allow you to watch their original programming on their websites a day after they release, for free. Furthermore, with the price of cable so high in some markets, it just doesn’t seem financially responsible (or for a lot of people, affordable). I’m going to outline 3 reasons why I think cable TV is on the decline and give the ONLY reason I think there is still money in TV.
There are so many Benefits to Streaming Services
In order to save you a paragraph or reading, here are some quick bullet points:
- Streaming services much cheaper than cable packages
- No commercials (except Hulu)
- Watch when you want and as much as you want
- Watch on any device
Original Content is Getting Better
Netflix has led the charge with original content coming almost every other week now. Just in 2016, Netflix has seen some great shows such as Daredevil, Stranger Things, House of Cards, and much more coming just in 2016. Amazon is still behind Netflix in original content but has had some home runs with Man in the High Castle and All or Nothing. Eventually, I see more and more TV shows and movies coming to these platforms, giving less and less of an incentive to purchase cable anymore.
Advancements in Technology Make People More Open to Change
With society changing so much so fast, most people have been conditioned to adapting to new technology. So many people around the world have seen the benefits of online streaming versus cable television and have made the decision to get rid of their cable subscription. It might be safe to say that many members of the Baby Boomer generation are still on cable but I wouldn’t be surprised to see cable TV decline much more in the next 20 years.
Cable TV’s Last Hope: Sports
This point is really simple. The NFL is still king, and live sports are really the least accessible in terms of online streaming. There currently isn’t a program set up to allow anyone to purchase a subscription to view every NFL game without a cable subscription. The TV deals for these sports leagues still bring in a VAST amount of money, which is why I don’t see sports leaving cable any time soon. I think it will eventually happen, with the NFL streaming a game on Twitter this upcoming season, but it will be awhile before every game happens. Now there are other live programming such as the local news or late night shows. But there isn’t any reason why those can’t be offered live online. Many local news stations already offer the live broadcast on their website already. Sports seems to be the only live programming that gains immensely from advertising.
I understand that there are a lot of reasons I could have missed in this article. Do you agree with me? Let us know in the comments below!