CHART OF THE DAY: Pay TV LOSES Customers For The First Time Ever

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The recession is finally taking its toll on the subscription television market.

SNL Kagan, which tracks trends in the U.S. multichannel market — cable, telcos, satellite, etc. — says the market had its “worst performance on record” in the second quarter of this year. Pay TV subscribers hit 100.1 million in Q2, down from 100.4 million in Q1.

Is the growing library of video available on the Internet finally starting to erode cable’s stranglehold on the market? Unlikely, says SNL Kagan analyst Mariam Rondeli, in a release. It’s the recession, and the weak housing market, that are finally slowing cable companies.

But, the risk for cable companies is that once the economy bounces back, consumers will realise they don’t need cable. They might get accustomed to whatever offerings are on the web and never return. Especially if Apple’s forthcoming iTV gadget is any good.

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