Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Broadband Subscribers Eclipsing Cable TV Subscribers

Soulskill posted about a month ago | from the only-until-they-come-out-with-smellovision dept.

The Internet 85

An anonymous reader writes: High-speed internet has become an everyday tool for most people, and cord-cutters have dramatically slowed the growth of cable TV, so this had to happen eventually: broadband internet subscribers now outnumber cable TV subscribers among the top cable providers in the U.S. According to a new report, these providers account for 49,915,000 broadband subscribers, edging out the number of cable subscribers by about 5,000. As Re/code's Peter Kafka notes, this means that for better or worse, the cable guys are now the internet guys. Kafka says their future is "selling you access to data pipes, and pay TV will be one of the things you use those pipes for."

cancel ×

85 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685303)

It doesn't matter which channel you watch, all cable content is total crap these days. You have basically four choices: "sports" involving obscenely overpaid multimillionaires, ultra-liberal "documentaries", "reality" freakshows, and manic "newscasts".

At least the Internet provides content that has some value. The recent nonsense in St. Louis is a great example of this. Cable news channels have gone out of their way to make the rioters appear to be "victims", to portray the guy who got shot as some sort of an "angel", and to refuse to acknowledge that the guy who got shot had just robbed a convenience store, assaulting somebody in the process, and most likely attacked a police officer.

The Internet coverage of this incident has been far better. It doesn't just give one side of the story, but instead provides as much information as possible. Intelligent, and even unintelligent, people know that they're better off getting the full picture from the Internet than they are watching cable news and getting a sanitized version of the events.

So of course cable viewership will drop off, as people get tired of the crap that's on there, and move to the Internet where the content is better.

Re:No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685385)

The Internet coverage of this incident has been far better.

That depends entirely on which websites you visit.

Re:No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (1)

Ignacio (1465) | about a month ago | (#47685421)

That depends entirely on which websites you visit.

Sure, but at least you get a chance to see what happened instead of having someone else unilaterally say "Open wide, here comes the news airplane!". Some is worse, but there's the possibility that some will be better.

Re:No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (0)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685447)

Some people want "here comes the news airplane" because they're listening to news or political opinion while doing household chores, not reading at a computer desk.

Re:No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685463)

Jesus Fucking Christ, tepples. Why would they need to subscribe to cable for that? They could just turn on the goddamn radio. You can get numerous AM and FM stations all across America, even in areas where cable isn't available and probably won't ever be available. They broadcast news, music, and all sorts of other content.

Re:No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685559)

They like paying 100+ dollars a month for it?

That is why people are ditching cable. Cost.

I moved into this house 10 years ago. The cost for internet AND cable was 40. To get the same service now is 120. Exact same service. Was inflation 300% in that time? Dont think so. To get the digital stuff plus the rented remotes and receivers you are pushing 160.

The cost ratio is out of wack for what it is . People realize they can rent crap from redbox for 1-2 bucks. Or get it from netflix for 10-15 a month less if you go with or the other service. The alternatives are wildly cheaper for the exact same service. The other services even have better service with low or no commercials.

Mark my words. Companies like comcast and tw and and att and verizon are just trying to figure out how to get their own streaming services going. That is where net caps come into play.

I have sat in meetings at one of the above companies where they talk 'our service will not cost against the caps'. WORD FOR WORD. Caps have 0 to do with network maintenance and everything to do with putting people back into the buy the content from them box. They do not get it. The alternatives are *cheaper* and have no commercials. I ask these questions to these execs and they *do* *not* *get* *it*. They are wildly out of touch with their customers. Their customers can not afford 200+ a month for service. They can because they make 250k a year plus bonuses. They are thinking 'let them eat cake'.

Re:No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685607)

What kind of sports do you get with Netflix and Redbox?

Re: No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (3, Insightful)

corychristison (951993) | about a month ago | (#47686073)

None. And I like it that way.

Re:No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (1)

mjm1231 (751545) | about a month ago | (#47687103)

None. I watch sports sporadically. Maybe a dozen NFL games, and once in awhile a special event like the Olympics or World Cup. However, I'm old enough to remember when that content was paid for purely by advertising. Now it still has advertising, so for me, the perceived value of being able to see these sports programs is pretty low. Certainly much much less per month than I pay for Netflix.

Re:No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47688635)

What kind of sports do you get with Netflix and Redbox?

I just stopped watching sports. It's brain dead entertainment for the masses and isn't worth it to me to pay $100 a month just to watch a couple of sports games. I can pay $8 a month for Netflix and have a good enough selection that I can watch what I want when I want. I imagine more and more people will do the same. There are far more options for home entertainment than sports these days--xbox, computer games, etc.

Re: No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685847)

Well someone has to pay the million dollar salaries per episode you know, or the insane amount of money sports stars receives.

Re: No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47686159)

The execs get it, they're just lying.

Fundamentally, they are trying to protect their fat profit margins. This can be considered Apple Pricing. Except no one is forced to buy Apple products.

The only way out of this I can see is to vertically separate the infrastructure from the service. Third party companies buy resources and sell to consumers. See MVNOs for a real-world example. In this way, private companies or municipal governments lay the cable while third parties compete with prices and services.

This may be the one industry in which adding middle men lowers prices.

Re: No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (1)

jd2112 (1535857) | about a month ago | (#47686377)

But then you had 50 crap channels you never watched along with the 5 that you did. Now there are 240 crap channels to go along with the 5 that you watch. Oh wait TLC is all reality shows and Discovery is pseudoscience crap so there are only 3 channels you watch now. But hey you have over 240 channels with nothing on now.

Left and right wing (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685617)

Many U.S. radio markets carry only conservative political talk shows on free radio, and people are willing to pay beaucoup bucks for a progressive counterpoint. And I wish you wouldn't use profanity in every single one of your replies to me.

Re: Left and right wing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47686333)

Poor baby. Can't handle profanity from strangers on the Internet. If it helps, just avoid the Internet until you grow up a bit. You'll know you're ready when you start growing new hair, you know, down there.

Re:Left and right wing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47686777)

Really? Don't you get that with MSNBC and CNN already?

Re:Left and right wing (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47687039)

MSNBC is the Most Socialist Network on Basic Cable, and CNN is the Cable News Network. Dropping cable isn't going to help much if the alternative is the right wing wasteland of AM radio.

Re:Left and right wing (2)

mrchaotica (681592) | about a month ago | (#47688927)

I'm not convinced that it's necessarily harder to find a progressive viewpoint on radio than it is on TV. My guess is that people who pay for TV to listen to while they do chores either A) are interested in particular commentators who have TV shows but not radio shows, or (more likely) B) think cable TV is just "something you have" and haven't reexamined how much it costs or how much actual utility they're getting from it. It's one of those things that really only becomes clear in retrospect, after you've cut the cord.

Re:No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about a month ago | (#47685537)

And this is what's wrong with our countries today. People all over the world fight and die for the right to hear and see news other than the officially approved ones, but we can't be assed to spend 10 minutes of our time to actually execute that right.

Maybe we'll only start to miss it once it's gone.

Re:No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685433)

> That depends entirely on which websites you visit.

You can count on TheBlaze for some really indepth and impartial coverage of the Ferguson protests.

Re:No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (1)

FatdogHaiku (978357) | about a month ago | (#47686947)

That depends entirely on which websites you visit.

Fox News! I know Rupert would never lie to me...
unless someone offered him, you know, money,
or he had another vested interest...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/News_Corporation [wikipedia.org]

Re:No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685529)

Why was the parent comment modded down? It looks fine to me. It sure isn't a goatse troll or something like that. It's on-topic, and makes some pretty good points. It gives a plausible explanation for why cable subscriptions are down and Internet usage is up. It's one of the better comments that have been posted so far. When I see really good comments like that modded down without justification, it makes me think that I'm at Reddit or Hacker News or Stack Overflow or some other intolerant discussion site like those are. I can understand them modding legit comments down because those sites are thoroughly infested with Millenials/Hipsters who love to engage in censorship. But Slashdot was generally better than that. People posting good comments like the parent one would get modded up instead of being punished for daring to post something relevant to the submission's topic like seems to be happening today!

Re:No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685627)

It was clear from the content that the author of the parent comment had been reading some very one-sided reports of what went on in St. Louis, and my guess is that it got downrated because of this. But I wasn't the one who downrated it, so I can only guess..

That perhaps is one of the great failings of modern media and even the internet. No matter what it is that you believe, you can find a news outlet or a website which validates your belief no matter how preposterous or ridiculous the rest of society might happen find it. For a lot of people there is a tendency to turn only to sources of information that reinforce those beliefs, you might never hear or understand the arguments against it. Carl Sagan once popularized the saying that extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. And yet there are many in our society that choose to believe things that are unsupported by any evidence only because the person holding the beliefs finds them comforting in some way.

Re:No shit. All cable content is crap these days. (3, Insightful)

Applehu Akbar (2968043) | about a month ago | (#47685679)

All news sources are biased, but the online world offers a much higher diversity of bias.

Unfortunately (3, Informative)

TubeSteak (669689) | about a month ago | (#47685311)

Unless you live in a city, in a major market, the odds of there being any competition are almost nil.

Re:Unfortunately (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47687097)

Unless you live in a city, in a major market, the odds of there being any competition are almost nil.
Actually I live in a city of 1.5 million. The phone company offers internet plus phone plus tv, and the cable tv company offers internet plus phone plust tv. And the prices are surprisingly high. And competition is almost nil. Its spelled this way: C.O.L.L.U.S.I.O.N.

Re:Unfortunately (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | about a month ago | (#47688835)

Even if you live in a city, in a major market, the odds of there being any competition are almost nil.

FTFY.

Split (1)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about a month ago | (#47685317)

for better or worse, the cable guys are now the internet guys.

That's why the governments should split those companies in two: ISP and TV/media providers. Otherwise, their TV/media half will just try to choke its own ISP half. With dinosaurs at the head of the cable companies, we already see it happening every day. They still firmly believe that "Internet" is just "interactive digital cable".

Re:Split (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685399)

The cable ISPs that charge less for a TV plus Internet bundle than for Internet alone are part of the problem. See previous comments by mrchaotica [slashdot.org] and sandytaru [slashdot.org] .

Re:Split (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685473)

Exactly this.

There is only one internet provider available where I live in close proximity to a major metropolitan city.

This provider, Comcast, charges less for internet + TV bundle than for stand alone internet with the same speed.

Re: Split (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47686227)

There is Excess satellite internet. Problem is that it is only unmetered during early morning hours. For the average Slashdot user, scheduling downloads shouldn't be too much of a hastle (even if it means restricting access at the router level). I also don't know if they use phone or DSL for upload.

It could be useful to threaten to go to satellite when negotiating with Comcast.

Re: Split (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47686683)

Crap, I meant to say Excede, not Excess.

Re:Split (0)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about a month ago | (#47685509)

The cable ISPs that charge less for a TV plus Internet bundle than for Internet alone are part of the problem.

Not true. Internet+TV should cost less than internet alone, because it costs less for them to provide it. Cable TV shows are already sent over the cable, so the marginal cost of providing you with cable TV is precisely zero. But they get advertising money from the commercials, and they kick back some of that to their customers in the form of a discount. Basically, they are indirectly paying you to watch their ads.

Retransmission consent (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685525)

Cable TV shows are already sent over the cable, so the marginal cost of providing you with cable TV is precisely zero.

I thought cable companies had to pay "retransmission consent" (that is, royalties) per subscriber to the networks.

Re:Retransmission consent (1)

ubrgeek (679399) | about a month ago | (#47685619)

But they can charge advertisers more if they can legitimately claim they have more TV-watching customers, regardless of whether those customers are actually tuning into anything.

Re:Retransmission consent (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685675)

A cable operator is allowed to replace a small number of commercials each hour with its own commercials. I'd be surprised if this number of commercials was enough to completely offset retransmission consent, especially on more expensive channels like ESPN and TNT.

Re:Retransmission consent (2)

mrchaotica (681592) | about a month ago | (#47688907)

First, thanks for citing my previous posts.

Second, the claim "Internet + TV is cheaper than Internet by itself" was referring to a plan that included only basic cable (the channels you'd get with an antenna). Any plan that included the likes of ESPN and TNT would be more expensive than Internet-only (or at least, I sure would hope so!).

Third, Comcast's offerings have improved this year: last year I was at $40/month for Internet + basic cable ($37 once I found out that they were supposed to be giving me a discount for using CableCard instead of a box); this year they actually had an advertised offer for $20/month Internet-only.

Re:Retransmission consent (1)

darkain (749283) | about a month ago | (#47685877)

Exactly! Comcast has to pay NBC/Universal (owned by Comcast) money for their content! It all makes perfect sense.

Not all channels are NBCU (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685911)

Not all channels are owned by NBCU, and even after the proposed merger with TWC, not all cable TV systems are operated by Comcast. So Comcast still has to pay retransmission royalties to other networks. Besides, cable channels themselves have expenses, and NBCU has to pay some of those out of retransmission revenue from other cable TV systems as well as what it would have received from Comcast. So on paper, Comcast probably pays NBCU the market rate for retransmission to make the books balance.

basic TV used to clear QAM on just about all syste (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about a month ago | (#47686193)

basic TV used to clear QAM on just about all systems and so the basic TV fee was kind of part of Internet on it's own. But when you buy tv it's lower as part of the promo price

Re:Split (1)

TClevenger (252206) | about a month ago | (#47685579)

I am such a customer. I have "basic local channels" from Time Warner because Internet would be more expensive without them. Of course, since they've switched to digital, I can no longer watch them without a box, which I refuse to pay for.

Re:Split (2)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about a month ago | (#47685583)

The cable ISPs that charge less for a TV plus Internet bundle than for Internet alone are part of the problem.

Yup. We were paying $135/month for a particular tier of Comcast's cable + internet service. We looked at going internet only, but for basically the same price ($70/month) we got internet, broadcast channels and HBO (and Discovery, but who cares). And it keeps my wife happy because she wants to watch all those cop and hospital dramas.

What's really maddening is how we got to $135 in the first place. It wasn't that long ago that our cable bill was closer to $80 for that same level of service. But Comcast kept pushing the cost upward... I think when they doubled the cable speed, called it "Blast!", and started charging $10 extra for it (without asking, of course) is what finally motivated us to act - they just throttle any services that extra speed would be useful for, anyway...

We are too far away from the central office to make DSL a viable choice, so Comcast is basically the only game in town. But I have toyed with the idea of testing T-Mobile's unlimited data plan in its place - if the Comcast price creep continues unabated, I might actually do it. If Netflix streaming works adequately, that'd be good enough.

Re:Split (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | about a month ago | (#47687105)

But I have toyed with the idea of testing T-Mobile's unlimited data plan in its place - if the Comcast price creep continues unabated, I might actually do it.

You might have a fixed wireless broadband provider in your area.
That would be the best and cheapest option.

T-Mobile's "unlimited" is actually unlimited 2G + 1/3/5 GB of tethered 4G.
The hotspot/table plans are unlimited 2G + 1/3/5/7/9/11 GB of tethered 4G.

/I happen to live too far away for DSL and in a fixed wireless coverage gap, so I'm stuck with Cable.

Re:Split (1)

sgt scrub (869860) | about a month ago | (#47686601)

I think they believe that "Internet" is a gathering tool for gleaning information about the customer. The changes people see them making to ISP and TV access is strictly so usage data is added directly into data correlation processes.

Most shows (1)

Redbehrend (3654433) | about a month ago | (#47685353)

Most shows are available online via Netflix, prime, on demand, etc... Cable companies are behind the tech on purpose... To make money and screw people lol.. It's just a matter of time before they are forced to update. ..

Delayed by months or years (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685415)

Most shows are available online via Netflix, prime, on demand, etc...

Not until years later, after which they're already irrelevant for water cooler socialization. Besides, good luck getting sports this way with the maze of blackout policies that the leagues impose.

Re: Delayed by months or years (2)

Redbehrend (3654433) | about a month ago | (#47685479)

Not true lots of my shows are available the same night they aired on their website or hulu. As for sports it's a different story but they are adding streaming on their websites. I know I can watch basketball live and nascar... I think you can start to watch baseball now as for football and hockey I am not sure... Cable companies know what's coming they are gonna milk it and slow it all they can lol

Two or eight day delay (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685543)

The leagues' online services tend to impose a 48 hour delay if a game was shown OTA, on national cable, or on regional cable in your area. For non-sports programming on the network's web site or Hulu, this delay can be 8 days. Even this much delay renders a game irrelevant for the socialization that forms a part of office politics.

Re:Most shows (1)

Dereck1701 (1922824) | about a month ago | (#47685563)

On demand TV is nice, but I wish there were some nice (Chrome compatible) channels available (Discovery, SyFi, History, etc). Sometimes just tuning to a channel and letting it run with whatever is on is enjoyable. And I'd be willing to pay a bit more a month for it as well, what I'm not willing to do is pay $40-80 a month for a over a hundred channels that I'll never watch just to get the dozen or so that I do when I can get most of what I want with Hulu/Netflix subscriptions for less than $20 a month (though Hulu really needs to work on their Chrome compatibility).

Can we kill most regular TV / radio yet? (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685377)

The internet has long since made cable and over-the-air broadcasts redundant avenues of data transmission, as the cord cutters know.

Can we please kill cable and it's dumb "channels" yet? Can we do away with traditional radio stations and their paid-for playlists?

I'm for keeping important over-the-air broadcasting such as weather and news via both TV and radio transmissions in case of emergencies, but regular tv and radio just aren't needed anymore. With the internet, you can search and pick exactly what you want, when you want it.

Do we want to listen to a morning/talk show, my favorite music, an audiobook, a 'podcast' or some other audio form of entertainment on my drive to or from work? Let US choose.

Do we want to watch a traditional tv show, a movie, a user uploaded video, a video-webcast, or some other form of visual entertainment media at home or wherever we have a TV or computer in front of us? Let US choose.

We the people no longer want or need your schedules or playlists. We can make our own.

Damn the cable and traditional radio/tv systems for continuing to try and hold back progress by refusing to upgrade speeds, trying to maintain too much control, and screwing with our laws to favor their outdated practices. It's coming anyway, but it could've been here a whole lot sooner if it wasn't for these clowns.

Free to air (2)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685457)

regular tv and radio just aren't needed anymore.

Regular radio and OTA TV can be received without a recurring fee beyond the electric bill, unlike Internet. Listening to FM or AM radio in the car doesn't incur a bill payable to a cellular provider.

Re:Free to air (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685691)

How is that any different than what we COULD be doing with things like free public Wi-Fi if the monopolies would get out of the way of progress?

How to get the monopolies out of the way? (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685719)

The broadband monopoly arises from exclusive rights to land, as the physical layer of the network has to cross non-subscribers' land to reach subscribers, and exclusive rights to radio frequency spectrum, which are put in place to keep a subscriber's signal from being drowned out by non-subscribers' nuisance signals. TV networks' monopolies arise from copyright, which a country can't just up and abolish without incurring severe trade sanctions from other WTO members. How would you recommend to get "the monopolies [...] out of the way of progress"?

Re:How to get the monopolies out of the way? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47686201)

Abolish copyright, and endure any trade sanctions. Those trade sanctions (Seriously? They must have 'lobbied' hard for that.) would only last a little while anyway.

Re:How to get the monopolies out of the way? (1)

FlyHelicopters (1540845) | about a month ago | (#47686739)

You can't abolish copyright... as much as some modern day hippies would like to...

It exists for valid reasons... perhaps it lasts too long, I'd consider making it much shorter to be reasonable, perhaps 20 years...

But abolish it outright? You really can't do that.

Re:Free to air (1)

wiredlogic (135348) | about a month ago | (#47685849)

Unidirectional broadcasting has lower overall costs than packet switching anyone's data willy nilly for free.

Re:Can we kill most regular TV / radio yet? (1)

nurb432 (527695) | about a month ago | (#47686065)

Can we please kill cable and it's dumb "channels" yet? Can we do away with traditional radio stations and their paid-for playlists?

Simple answer : NO.

Longer answer: Not everyone wants to burn mobile data time just to listen to local radio stations while they are out and about. Besides mobile data issues, soon home bandwidth caps will shrink down to ludicrous levels, unless you are consuming the ( extra charge ) content from your provider.

5,000? (1)

SeaFox (739806) | about a month ago | (#47685389)

That's all we're basing this declaration on? That feels like it would fall within the margin of error for one of these reports.

Re:5,000? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685487)

Shhhh. Don't disturb the herd. They need to think that their "side" is "winning" some unknown battle so they can feel good about themselves. It's more about what views they subscribe to and what corporate badges that are printed on their technology than what they're actually doing with all this shit they pride themselves so much in.

The news is that they're tied (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685779)

The difference is that proponents of traditional mutichannel pay television can no longer assume the conventional wisdom that TV subscribers greatly outnumber Internet subscribers. So the news is that they're tied.

Um, yeah (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685395)

We've been saying this here since at least 2001 and they've been fighting it tooth and nail every step of the way. We're still right, because it's obvious if you understand the progress of technology.

Good News for Cable Companies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685403)

Internet service is far cheaper to provide than television.

Wholesale cost of 1TB of network data is under $4 [fiercetelecom.com] and if historical trends continue will be below $3 by 2015 if not sooner. The math is a little fuzzy because its priced in bits per second, not increments of bytes, but close enough for slashdot. And, of course, there are fixed costs like infrastructure and manpower. But television service also has significant fixed costs.

Fixed costs (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685435)

Fixed costs are a huge part of it. Internet service requires installation of wires, permission to install which costs the provider a lot of money. It also has the cost of physical wire maintenance, which involves support calls and may involve truck rolls for certain kinds of problem. These costs don't scale per megabit per second, unless you refer only to the ISPs' rationale for caps.

Re:Fixed costs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685501)

But television service also has significant fixed costs.

Cable competes with satellite, but only in TV (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685577)

Cable television has to compete with OTA and satellite television. Cable Internet doesn't have to try as hard because cellular and satellite Internet have longer pings, slower throughput over a second, and far slower throughput over a month (often 5 to 10 GB/mo) that makes them useless for over-the-top VOD services such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu Plus, and YouTube. Cell and sat ISPs are considered last resorts for areas not served by any wired ISP.

Re:Cable competes with satellite, but only in TV (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685697)

non-sequitur

Re:Cable competes with satellite, but only in TV (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685725)

I admit I wasn't clear about the link between the two: Cable can take the costs of operating in a competitive market (television) and pass them onto a non-competitive market in which it also operates (home Internet).

Death to content providers (2)

JoeyRox (2711699) | about a month ago | (#47685547)

Couldn't happen to a nice industry. From their overpriced content to their monopolistic channel bundling requirements imposed on cable providers, the sooner the media companies die the better for all of us. And then maybe our cable bills will stop going up at 4x the rate of inflation.

Re:Death to content providers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47686071)

Nobody's forcing you to pay for that content ... unless you want to watch it. And even then, nobody is forcing you to watch it over cable.

Re:Death to content providers (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about a month ago | (#47690035)

yes people are being forced to pay for that content, even if they only want basic internet connectivity. This even happens with ISP like AT&T, people who have copper only internet connection were force converted to "U-verse" customers

Good riddance. (1)

toonces33 (841696) | about a month ago | (#47685653)

If it were not for the fact that my wife is a sports nut, I would have cut the cable long ago. As time goes on, the quality of the programming slides further and further downhill. Undoubtedly driven by the need to create cheaper and cheaper content.

Sports kind of ticks me off. Virtually everyone with cable has to pay for some of it, and yet if you *never* watch sports you still subsidize those who do want to watch it. My feeling is that sports is in a sort of bubble - costs have just risen too far, and eventually there will be a day of reckoning when those leeches will no longer be able to con the populace into continuing to support it.

It will not be too much longer until programs such as "Ow! My Balls" would be the most popular programs on television.

Ridiculousness (1)

tepples (727027) | about a month ago | (#47685695)

It will not be too much longer until programs such as "Ow! My Balls" would be the most popular programs on television.

Given shows like America's Funniest Home Videos and Ridiculousness, I'd say that ship has long since sailed.

TNT and others still have good non sports shows (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about a month ago | (#47686161)

TNT and others still have good non sports shows

Re:Good riddance. (1)

speedlaw (878924) | about a month ago | (#47686585)

Don't watch sports. The promotional price went away. Two months later, got hit for a $6 per month sports fee. Arguing with Customer "service" was pointless. Dropped TV entirely, and between OTA Roku and Netflix, via a tivo box, don't miss it. So rising sports fees did cost them a subscriber....

Hoping (1)

DaMattster (977781) | about a month ago | (#47685789)

Here's to hoping that IP TV will finally takeoff and we can just choose the channels we want. I only watch 10 or 15 channels out of the 500+ that I'm forced to pay for.

Re:Hoping (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about a month ago | (#47686175)

if it does Comcast will just lower the cap and even if they do X2 cell it will still be low and make buying TV seem like a good deal.

mo3 up (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47685975)

people already; I'm formed his own Prefeerably with an

Cord cutting (1)

tquasar (1405457) | about a month ago | (#47686059)

We're being hurt by the profit over anything else business model . Yeah, I have huge bills for TV and net, a land line and two cells. I used to have a antenna on my house to receive free TV and my RV has one so I can get local news and weather while on the road. Net access is not a luxury but a necessity. As a bonus, my electric company has the highest or nearly highest electricity rates in the US of A.

"and pay TV will be one of the things you use" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47686085)

NOT. Not since 2007 have we paid for TV or watched TV.

How is it all you computer experts can get plenty of free porn but pay for sports?

Re: "and pay TV will be one of the things you use" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47686709)

They can't wait a day or week because then the results will be plastered everywhere.

It's like spoiling the ending to a movie or book.

Same company. Same bill. Same wire. (1)

Snufu (1049644) | about a month ago | (#47686589)

Different protocol.

Comcast is the new Ford circa 1930, you can have any color Model T as long as its black.

OK, welcome to the club! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47686801)

I cut my "regular" cable TV more than 10 years ago. Thanks for getting with the times, n00bs!

Unfortunately as the Internet becomes more popular my bill keeps getting higher. I used to pay $30/mo for 30 mbps 15 years ago. Now I pay $60/mo for 15 mbps. What the fuck is wrong with this picture?!?!? Everybody is ripping me off.

Cable companies should be :). (1)

antdude (79039) | about a month ago | (#47687207)

That they can do more than TV: Phone, Internet, etc. Imagine if they couldn't. They would be dead!

Welcome to 2005! (1)

shaitand (626655) | about a month ago | (#47688051)

Congratulations, Leichtman Research Group you have figured out something that has simply been common knowledge among everyone else since 2005.

I pay $150/mo for cable for one reason only, live streamed sports. For everything else, even if it's on cable, I have my system set up to download high quality encodings to my DVR automatically the moment they become available. Movies, everything coming up that I want gets put in the system and the moment a high quality release becomes available, automatically downloaded to Plex which turns my collection into a meta data filled netflix. The system even meshes high ratings on IMDB and rotten tomatoes with things I've liked in the past and makes suggestions or automatically downloads new movies for me. Music as well, I get suggestions based on my library and new albums from artists in my collection appear automatically generally in lossless FLAC.

Imagine a world where the sports networks, tv networks, mpaa, book publishers, and the riaa banded together to provide a single legal content source where you could get all content in multiple formats and the middle men are all cut out. Live events and movies are unchanged by this and remain the primary money makers. You pick which forms of content you want and maybe pay as much as $50/mo per content type. But at that price point you have unlimited access to all content from that source in a DRM free and metadata rich form that couples nicely with a personal multimedia system at the quality you like be that a lower quality yiffy type rip or full 4k or 1080p blu-ray quality encode. At lower price points maybe there is a cap based on data like 250GB/mo for $25. The distribution of that money and royalties would be determined based on what you actually downloaded. Someone who watches 30 movies a month on their unlimited hollywood package might contribute a smaller royalty to their 3D LOTR download than someone with the same package who watches 10. You could even use my user ratings to weight those royalties. Sort of like how a new deck hand might get a quarter or half share on a fishing boat while most crew members get a full share and someone really good might get a double share.

+ or - 5,000 on 50,000,000 is not 'eclipse' ... (1)

fygment (444210) | about a month ago | (#47688419)

... it's noise.

More accurate to say, 'the number of people with broadband subscribers now approximately equals ....'

Very sadly, I know that I will shortly hear someone in the workplace trumpetinng the /. title.

Check for New Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>