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November 8, 2020 |

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SVOD subscription hits 80% in US as pay-TV customers continue to fall

Eight out of ten US TV households subscribe to at least one SVOD service while 60% of Americans subscribe to both a streaming and pay-TV offering, a new report has found.

According to Leichtman Research Group (LRG), 60% of US TV households have both a pay TV service and at least one SVOD subscription. Underlining the huge emergence of SVOD, a further 20% of households have an SVOD subscription but no pay TV package – meaning that 80% of homes with a TV in the country subscribe to an SVOD.

Non-SVOD homes represent the remaining 20%, with 14% only having a pay TV service and 6% having neither pay TV nor SVOD and instead relying on a TV antenna.

It’s worth noting that the figures may be skewed by the fact that pay TV operators and broadcasters are increasingly launching their own SVODs and offering them for free to their subscribers – such as is the case with Comcast and Peacock.

The figures come from LRG’s 18th annual study on pay TV in the US, and are based on a survey of 2,000 households from across the country. The study also found that the proportion of pay TV subscribers has dropped from 88% in 2010 and 85% in 2015 to 74% today.

Pay TV penetration is also higher amongst older people, with 81% of adults aged 55+ having a pay TV service – compared to 76% of ages 35-54, and 63% of ages 18-34. The generation divide is also laid bare by the fact that 27% of 18-34 year olds pay for TV and SVOD, compared to 46% with only SVOD.

Bruce Lichtman, president and principal analyst for LRG, said: “Traditional pay-TV services from cable, satellite and telco providers are now in less than two-thirds of US households, while an increasing number of households are opting to get live pay-TV from internet-delivered vMVPD [Virtual Multichannel Video Programming Distributor] services.

“Consumers continue to choose the video services that best fit their households’ needs. For 60% of households, this includes both pay-TV and SVOD services.”

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