Telco gains seem to be cable’s loss


A new report out from Rider Research shows that telcos entering the MVPD business managed to sign 567K new subscribers during Q4 2008. But the pay TV business as a whole only gained 362K total. Any guesses where the difference came from? When you factor in a 199K increase for satellite platforms, that leaves cable, which bled 404K total households. The satellite number was actually very much a mixed bag. It was great for DirecTV, which gained 301K households, while DISH was suffering a 102K loss.

RBR/TVBR observation: Telcos figured to take a bite out of cable’s household share as they entered new markets. But all MVPD platforms should be benefitting from the DTV transition, as should all retailers of consumer electronics. It’s yet another sorry sign of the state of the economy.