Last year, services like Netflix and Hulu provided enough entertainment for more than a million people in the US to cancel their cable or satellite TV subscriptions. That brings the total number of people who have made such a move to 2.65 million since 2008. These are people who specifically said they canceled pay TV service because they were switching to Web-based video options.
It may seem like this number will only continue to climb at higher rates, but it’s believed that the cable-cutting momentum will slow after content creators lessen the level of access and increase prices for distribution. And while there will still be people who cancel their pay TV services, the number who sign up for new service will offset that, leading to net increases in subscriber rates, perhaps fueled by newer enticing offers to gain first-time customers while increasing rates on long-time subscribers.
Some have said the notion of cord-cutting for Web video is a myth, and that it isn’t something to actually worry about yet. These numbers from Convergence Consulting, though, show that it is more than a myth. The other obvious fact is that Netflix is the biggest driving factor for cord cutting, with 21.7 million Netflix streaming users at the end of 2011.