As I was browsing through the interwebs I came across Mike Snider’s missive on subscription fatigue as it relates to cable TV cord cutters; you know, with all those subscriptions you need to replace cable TV. In an odd way, techno fatigue has legs.
Pay! Or, Pay!
I can understand the cord cutting sentiment. Who wants to pay $100 to $200 a month for cable TV and internet access, when much of what the cable TV company charges for is available online. So, cut the cable TV portion, stick with internet and download what you need to view and when you need to view it.
If only life were that simple.
Snider on the growing trend toward subscriptions (other than cable TV, which itself is something of a subscription).
More people are subscribing to streaming services such as Netflix and Hulu, with 69 percent of consumers saying they subscribe to at least one, up from 55 percent last year
Streaming services are growing in popularity and range from Google’s YouTube TV to Sony to Sling to DirecTV to Hulu to CBS to Amazon and more than 300 streaming video services already and more on the way from Disney, Pixar, Lucasfilm, Marvel and others.
Did I mention Apple?
Even as more consumers subscribe to video delivered over the internet, nearly half (47 percent) of those surveyed say they are experiencing subscription fatigue.
What is crazy about this trend and why it has blossomed into fatigue, is that nearly half of all U.S. households have both cable TV and a streaming subscription.
Where will it end?
Traditional pay-TV subscriptions do continue to trend downward. Last year, the major pay-TV providers lost about 2.9 million subscribers, after accounting for about 640,000 new subscribers to streamed live TV services such as Sling TV and DirecTV Now.
With Apple entering the streaming business we can safely assume that such streaming services will not end any time soon, and what we pay for subscriptions will continue to go up as we add more services to fill the missing cable TV void.
It isn’t just cable TV and streaming video, either. Already I have a dozen apps on Mac, iPhone, and iPad– coupled with Apple Music– that are subscription based. Unfortunately, I remember the good old days when TV was over the air and free. 5 channels and nothing to watch. Cable TV made that 200 channels and nothing worthwhile to watch. Now we’re up to a few hundred services, a million channels, and I still have to search to watch something worthwhile.
Meanwhile, my credit card balance continues to go up each month thanks to cable TV, streaming video apps and services, and subscription apps for my Mac, iPhone, and iPad.