If the general public required yet another reason to switch from cable TV to services like Hulu or SlingTV, the news that cable providers will rack up prices once again in 2016 will more than likely lower the number of cable users even more. The odds that people will turn towards using non-cable TV in the coming year are increasing with each passing month.
The reason why this price hike usually occurs at the start of the new year, especially in the case of cable sports programming, is the fact that various important matches take place in January. Because the cost of keeping the service up increases, Time Warner and AT&T cable providers rack up prices without the fear that their consumers will drop their subscription. No one wants to watch a sports event without being able to see the finals, thus creating the perfect environment for a cost increase.
Time Warner will also increase its internet prices, even if the company has been heavily criticized for the lack of stability and speed associated to its services. Because Time Warner has these problems revolving around its internet delivery services, US has ranked on the 16th place in the global average internet speed list. Even though this might change in the near future as IPv6 gets implemented, the fact of the matter is that at the moment, Time Warner internet is not really that good.
Because of the current insecurity aimed towards Time Warner, Charter Communication’s $56 billion purchase may be facing the risk of being declined. The deal is currently awaiting federal acceptance, but if it will pass, Charter will become the 3rd largest pay-TV company in the US.
In regards to prices, Time Warner’s sports programming will get a $2.75 increase, with normal subscriptions going up by the same amount, reaching $3.75 per month. Internet prices will rise only by $2 for the standard service, as well as the modern lease fee, now being priced at $10 per month.
Comcast will also hike its prices, with a rather hefty 275% increase in its normal fees, reaching $5 per month, while the sports segment will cost $3 more than usual. DirectTV and AT&T U-Verse will both raise prices by a minimum of $4. Dish Network states that its users should expect a maximum increase of $8 for its monthly subscriptions.
Cable bills, in general, have gone up annually by about 5.9%, reaching an average of $66.61 for the year of 2014. The main reason why this cable service still remains relevant in the current market is the fact that sports championships and events are only available to view on ESPN, NFL, or other similar channels.
Due to the fact that cable providers will rack up prices once again in 2016, online television services like Netflix and Hulu will more than likely overthrow cable TV in the following years. As more and more sports events get broadcast online, there will no longer be a reason to maintain a paid subscription towards cable TV, effectively ending its long-lasting life that started back in 1948.