Kagan Sees Pay-TV Subs Dropping to 82M By 2021

The traditional pay-TV universe will continue to shrink, according to the latest projections by Kagan, a unit of S&P Global Market Intelligence.

Kagan projects that by 2021, the number of traditional multichannel subscribers will fall by 10.8 million households to 82.3 million.

At the same time, the number of households choosing to get their video programming from virtual services—such as Sling TV, PlayStation Vue and other, newer competitors—will reach nearly 11 million households.

By 2021, the number of households relying only on over-the-top delivery of self-aggregated online content will hit 18 million, equal to 14% of occupied households, according to Kagan.

“Changing viewing habits point to mounting losses for traditional video services, and challengers are lining up to capitalize,” said Ian Olgeirson, research director for S&P Global Market Intelligence. “However, the operators are not without significant fortifications enabling expectations for preserving a majority share in the five-year outlook.”

(Photo via Pictures of Money's FlickrImage taken on Sept. 17, 2015 and used per Creative Commons 2.0 license. The photo was cropped to fit 16x9 aspect ratio.)

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.