OTA-TV Climbing in U.S. Broadband Homes

The percentage of U.S. broadband homes that use only antennas to receive TV has risen steadily in recent years, according to a new study from Parks Associates.

That number has climbed to about 15% amid a trend that has seen a drop in pay TV subscriptions paired with an increase in Internet-only video subscriptions, the research found in the study, 360 View: Entertainment Services in U.S. Broadband Households.

Those numbers could bode well for OTA-OTT combo products, such as the new Air TV Player and Adapter from a subsidiary from Dish Network, that cater to cord-nevers and cord-cutters.

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Per the study, 81% of U.S. broadband homes still have a pay TV subscription, but only one-third of them are “very satisfied” with the service. Notably, 31% of U.S. broadband homes take multiple OTT service subscriptions, Parks Associates said.

Additionally, twice as many subs downgraded their pay TV service (12%) than upgraded it (6%) in 2016, and only half as many cord-nevers adopted pay TV in 2016 (2%) versus 2015 (4%).

“Pay-TV subscriptions have dropped each year since 2014, falling to 81% of U.S. broadband households in Q3 2016,” Brett Sappington, senior director of research at Parks Associates, said in a statement. “Several factors have played a part in this decline, including growth in the OTT video market, increasing costs for pay-TV services, and consumer awareness of available online alternatives.”

But pay TV players are adapting, he said, adding that it’s still a challenge for consumers to aggregate and discover their favorite content and view it on their preferred screen.