The rising popularity of cord-cutting has got pay TV providers worried about their customer base and scrambling to give their viewers a reason to stay. Netflix seems to be growing into traditional TV’s main competitor for video content.
However, a new study by TiVo Research and Analytics (TRA) shows that most viewers use the subscription VOD service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, regular TV.
Collecting data from nearly 10,000 respondents, the study showed that there was “no significant difference” in amount of regular TV watched between those who subscribe to Netflix and those who do not. And with over half (57%) of the respondents saying that they subscribed to the VOD platform, Netflix may not yet pose as big of a cord-cutting threat as cable/satellite companies think.
Mark Lieberman, CEO of TRA, says that the study’s results are clear and positive, but do not necessarily bode well for the future of traditional TV:
“Our data show that Netflix is not currently a substitute for traditional television, but offers a way for TV lovers to watch more of the kinds of programs they love. The future of television may tell a different story, but as of today we’ve found that the Netflix subscribers in our study are not watching less traditional TV.”
The future may indeed tell a different story, as another study showed that 20% of Netflix users in the US have already cut the cord. However, as much of a concern cord-cutting OTT users are for pay TV companies, it’s not time for them to go into crisis mode just yet. Traditional TV providers still have broadcasting rights to major, one-time events – most notably sports. As long as they can keep hold of those rights, they always have a chance.