Perceived value of pay-TV diminishes

Joseph O'Halloran | 05-03-2013

Even though pay-TV penetration remains high, new research from TDG has revealed that subscribers are increasingly questioning the value of what they sign up to.
TDG's Benchmarking the Connected Consumer survey of 2,000 US adult broadband users, which investigated the use of traditional and OTT pay-TV services, found that even though nearly nine-tenths of broadband subscriber take pay-TV services from cable, satellite, and IPTV/telco TV providers, their opinion of the perceived value of the service relative to prices paid has declined in the last 12 months.

More worryingly, this comes at a time when alternatives, such as over-the-top (OTT) services, are gaining traction.

The survey data found that this fall occurred regardless of what competitive services were available, regardless of which operator was running the best deal at the time, and regardless of regional price advantages.
Specifically, at this time in 2012, 55% of pay-TV subscribers rated their service as a good value yet a year later this has slipped to 49%. Furthermore, the percentage of pay-TV subscribers rating the value of their service as extremely good declined from 31% to 25%.
"With prices for traditional pay-TV services on the rise, it makes sense that consumers would second guess the value of these subscriptions," observed Michael Greeson, founding partner of TDG.
"Though value has remained high for decades, in the last year perceptions seem to be waning. Without doubt this is due to continued economic uncertainty, but our research continues to show that the availability of alternative video sources is weighing more heavily on consumer perceptions than many believe."