TV channels must be starting to feel the sting as more subscribers opt for video streaming services. New data from global information company The NPD Group shows that television channel subscriptions fell 6 percent in the last two years, while streaming services grew 4 percent.
It appears that with the ease and relative low cost of TV and movie streaming services, more people are canceling channel subscriptions like HBO and Showtime. According to The NPD Group, 67 percent of all digital video transactions are via subscription video-on-demand, or SVOD. This includes services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu Plus.
The networks, however, blasted the NPD study.
"The research is simply incorrect," said a representative for HBO and Cinemax, which are owned by Time Warner. Other pay-TV networks chimed in with the same sentiment to the Los Angeles Times.
A study by JP Morgan analysts in October found, like many polls before, that cord-cutting households are still in the minority, but a large proportion are on the fence. According to the study, 7 percent of TV watchers age 18 to 49 were "cord-nevers," people who have never paid to subscribe to a TV service. Ten percent were cord-cutters. And, a full 40 percent were what they termed "cord considerers," people who subscribe to pay TV and are somewhat or extremely likely to cancel.
This type of behavior change among subscribers is causing TV channels and cable providers to rethink their offerings. In October, Comcast offered a pay-television package that gave HBO Go to subscribers for a discount. While this looked like it could've signaled a move toward HBO Go breaking out on its own, it appears that is still a long ways off.
Updated on Wednesday at 11:24 am PT:To include a statement from HBO.