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Published on May 1st, 2018 | by Brad Gibson


U.S. consumers clearly say traditional TVs value is waning, study reveals

Is the price and value of TV subscriptions worth it? A new survey shows U.S. video consumers are believing more than ever that streaming services Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime are a much better value versus traditional cable or satellite TV.

A new annual study released Tuesday by Hub Entertainment Research found the difference between what TV consumers pay, and what they think is reasonable to pay, is greatest among traditional pay-TV subscribers. These customers pay, on average, $33 more per month for the TV services they subscribe to than they think is reasonable.

However, among those subscribing to skinny TV bundles, like SlingTV, DIRECTV Now or YouTube TV, the actual versus reasonable difference is much lower, at just $17.


Overall, the report found that subscription on-demand services like Netflix and Amazon, as well as skinny bundles of services like DirecTV Now, Fubo, and Sling TV, are all perceived as much better deals than traditional services. At least 75 percent of streaming subscribers, and 68 percent of skinny-TV subscribers, said that their subscription is a good or excellent value. That compares to 46 percent among traditional pay TV subscribers.

The survey found that in the last year, those with a cable or satellite subscription fell 10 percent while cord cutters watching television through various other means increased seven percent. The survey also delivered somewhat of a surprise…cord cutters are not young people watching all their video on YouTube or other such services. While they might be less engaged with TV overall, the survey showed the average age of cord cutters is 40 years with the importance of TV being 40 percent versus 53 percent for traditional cable or satellite TV subscribers.

The study also found compared to 2014, more than twice as many people – 15 percent versus 35 percent – subscribe to two or more of the ‘big 3’ streaming services, Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime.

The survey was conducted online with 2,296 U.S. consumers age 16-74 who have broadband access at home and watch a minimum of one hour of television per week.

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About the Author

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

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