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Published on March 16th, 2018 | by Brad Gibson

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Study: 20% of U.S. broadband homes use antenna for TV

Some 20 percent of U.S. homes with broadband used digital, over-the-air antennas to access live TV near the end of 2017, a four percent increase from 2015, according to an industry research report. The results are another indication that many Americans are not only cutting ties with cable and satellite providers but finding that if they do subscribe to a streaming service they are reducing their viewing of live TV.

The report – 360 View: Access and Entertainment Services in U.S. Broadband Households – from Parks Associates was based on a survey of 10,000 heads-of broadband households in the U.S. in Q3 2017. It suggests that the growth rate coincides with a steady decline of pay-TV subscriptions while more people are subscribing to services like Sling TV and Netflix, to name a few.

“Increasingly, consumers are cobbling together their own bundles of content sources,” Brett Sappington, senior director of research at Parks Associates, said in a press release. “Digital antennas are experiencing a resurgence as consumers consider over-the-air TV and OTT video services as alternatives to pay TV.

“The percentage of ‘Never’ households (households that have never subscribed to pay-TV services) has held steady, and the percentage of households actually cutting the cord has increased between 2015 and 2017. Antennas are an affordable source for local channels to these households.”

The study is further evidence of a report released earlier this week by Tivo that found that about 44.8 percent of homes without pay TV service use an antenna to watch over-the-air TV.

Sappington concludes that pay-TV providers are having a tough time proving to consumers the value their services provide, noting that more than 50percent of homes that have switched, reduced or cut the cord believe that the service is simply not worth the cost.

“Only 46% of pay-TV subscribers are aware that they can access video-on-demand content from their operator, including free programming,” Sappington commented. “Many indicate that they want to purchase online video services through their pay-TV provider and to access the service through their channel guide.”

17 percent of those surveyed also said they might have stayed with their pay-TV provider if they didn’t have to pay monthly fees for equipment. 63% of subscribers said that they currently can’t restart programs from the beginning on their pay-TV service, but would use that feature if it were available.

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About the Author

Brad is co-founder and editor-in-chief of BESTAppleTV.com. He has been a technology reporter since the late 1980s having previously worked for MacUser, MacFormat, and iCreate magazines, as well as MacNN.com, MacObserver.com, MacCentral.com, MacMinute.com, and Macworld.com. He hosted and produced the MacFormat This Week podcast for three years. He was also a reporter, editor, and producer for the Associated Press and United Press International.



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