Satellite TV tops cable in 14 markets


The Television Bureau of Advertising (TVB) is out with its latest comparison of cable vs. alternate delivery system (ADS) television delivery, the latter being primarily satellite TV, but also wireless cable and other alternatives. According to Nielsen NTI data, national ADS penetration reached 27.1% in May 2007, up from 22.6% in May 2006, and now represents 30.9% of subscription television customers (those paying for video delivery). Over the same period, TVB says, national wired-cable penetration fell from 63.4% to 61.2% – the last time wired cable was lower was in February 1990. The number of wired-cable subscribers dropped to 68.2 million in May from 69.9 million a year earlier; ADS homes jumped from 24.9 million to 30.2 million in the same period.

"Advertisers who buy cable locally need to know that local wired cable systems' ability to deliver commercials continues to erode. In 14 markets, a majority of those paying for video programming are getting that programming via ADS rather than from a wired-cable system. And 56 markets now have ADS penetration of 40% or more," said Susan Cuccinello, Senior Vice President, Research, TVB. The latest report included a milestone – the first market where ADS now claims over 60% of the subscription TV market. That market is Springfield, MO. Here are the 14 markets where ADS competitors have more subscribers than wired cable.