Cord-Cutter Households Will Make Up 72% of U.S. Homes by 2025

family watching TV
(Image credit: Getty Images)

New data from Convergence Research highlights some trends that will continue to fuel growth in streaming media, with cord-cutter/cord-never homes in the U.S. growing to 72% of all households in 2025 and traditional pay TV video offerings seeing even larger sub losses in the next few years.  

"Net-net traditional TV access [from a pay TV subscription] is well into becoming a niche product (even if we included vMVPDs in our TV numbers)," the report said.  

“The Battle for the North American (US/Canada) Couch Potato: OTT and TV” report analyzed more than 80 OTT services (over 50 providers), led by Netflix, Disney/Hulu, WBD, Amazon. Based on that data, it concluded that 2022 U.S. OTT access revenue grew 26% to $49.6 billion and forecasts 21% growth in 2023. But that growth will significantly slow to 13% in 2025. 

The researchers also estimated that broadcast and cable TV Network online advertising, propelled by OTT (AVOD, FAST, SVOD), will rise to 23% of 2025 U.S. TV advertising revenue.

Much of this is being fueled by an ongoing slump in the pay TV ecosystem. The report estimates that 2022 U.S. cable, satellite, telco TV access revenue declined 6% to $85.8 billion and will drop by even larger rates in the future, with a 9% decline in 2023 and 13% in 2025.

Meanwhile the decline of 7.37 million U.S. TV subscribers in 2022 will grow to a 8.24 million TV pay TV sub loss in 2023, Convergence estimated. That means U.S. pay TV subs, which declined by 11% in 2022, will drop by even faster rates in the next few years, with a 14% decline in 2023 and 16% in 2025.

This will produce a notable transformation in the way U.S. homes get their video entertainment. Convergence Research’s cord-cutter model estimates that at the end of 2022 there were almost 70 million US households (over 53% of households) who did not have a TV subscription with a cable, satellite, or telco TV access provider. By the end of 2025 cord cutters will comprise 72% of U.S. households. 

Looking further into the future, the Converence researchers are projecting a decline of 70% of TV subs between the end of 2022 and the end of 2028. During that period, annual TV access revenue from pay TV subs will decline by more than 60% of annual TV access revenue the number of cord cutter/cord never households will nearly double. Annual OTT revenue will grow by more than two and a half times between 2022 and 2028. 

Meanwhile TV access providers that are also broadband providers continue to benefit from the rise of OTT. Annual residential broadband revenue has more than doubled over the last decade, while TV access revenue is in its 7th year of decline, the report found. 

More information on the report, which also includes extensive data on Canada, is available here.  

George Winslow

George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.