Many consumers today are cutting the cord and saying good-bye to their cable and satellite providers. And who could blame them? The cost of traditional pay TV is on the rise and customer service is declining rapidly.
According to Leichtman Research, the largest pay TV providers in the United States (approximately 95% of the market) lost twice as many subscribers this year: about 975,000 net video subscribers in 3Q 2018, compared to 410,000 in 3Q 2017.
With a large selection of streaming subscription services available to consumers, cutting the cord seems to make sense. But is it always the right decision?
These are four things to consider before you cut the cord:
- You are dependent on your internet service. Depending on where you live, you may not always have a reliable internet connection. Although most people can live with the occasional blip in their connection, this could pose a huge problem when you’re engrossed in a show or sporting event.
- Streaming is harder for major live events. Although most streaming devices can handle high traffic, really big events could cause a slowdown. The quality of the video that you receive depends on the bandwidth available. This is directly affected by how many users in your neighborhood are on the same connection. Even more problematic is the number of people in your home who have devices using the same WiFi.
- The cost of streaming could be significant. Consumers who make the switch are seeking to decrease the monthly financial burden of pay TV. However, the cost of streaming services like Netflix, HBO Now, Amazon Prime, YouTube Red or Hulu Plus could be higher than you think. In fact, prices for streaming services continue to go up. Furthermore, if your internet connection is not fast enough, you have to consider the cost of upgrading the speed to ensure high-quality streaming.
- You might be stuck with your “bundle.” Companies like AT&T U-Verse and Verizon FiOS know how to ensure that customers depend on them: they provide bundled packages that make your services seem less expensive. In addition to the convenience of getting one bill, internet service is less expensive when you bundle it with your TV, and home phone services.
For many consumers, cutting the cord is a great decision. For others, there is not enough financial gain to justify losing a full array of network choices and to risk video quality. For consumers who aren’t quite ready to cut the cord, there are other, reliable ways to save money on your monthly bills.
Billshark can negotiate your cable, internet and phone bills while you sit back and reap the rewards. We have an 85% success rate lowering consumers’ monthly bills, with a $275 average savings per bill. Send us your bills, and we’ll do the rest.