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Cable Broadband Dominates Again in Q3: LRG

The top cable operators continued to rake in the lion’s share of net broadband subscriber additions in the third quarter, according to new data from Leichtman Research Group.

The 14 largest U.S. MSOs and telcos, representing about 95% of the market, tacked on about 625,000 net additional high-speed subs in Q3, about 99% of the total net adds generated in the year-ago quarter, LRG said. Those service providers now have about 92.5 million broadband subs – 57.8 million among the biggest cable operators, and 34.7 among the top telcos.

The top MSOs added about 775,000 subs in the period, or about 99% of the net adds in the year-ago period.

Thanks in part to ongoing DSL declines, the top telcos shed about 150,000 broadband subs, up slightly from a loss of 145,000 a year earlier. Among the invidual telcos tracked by LRG for the Q3 study, only Verizon (24,000) and Cincinnati Bell (3,100) came away with net sub additions in the period.

LRG said the telcos have had net broadband losses in five of the past six quarters.

Through the first three quarters of 2016, top MSOs have added 2.44 million broadband subs, compared to a loss of 475,000 among the telcos.

“While major providers now account for nearly 92.5 million broadband subscribers in the US, the broadband market continues to expand with top cable providers driving the growth,” said Bruce Leichtman, president and principal analyst for LRG, in a statement. “Over the past year, cable companies added more than 3.5 million broadband subscribers, accounting for 118% of the 2.995 million net broadband additions.”