U.S. pay TV revenue will plummet to $56B by 2025: analyst

Cable, satellite and telecom video providers can expect to see total industry revenues drop off significantly over the next five years.

According to a new report from Digital TV Research, global pay TV revenues will fall to $152 billion by 2025, down from a peak $202 billion in 2016. The firm said the total will be lower than 2010’s $175 billion despite the number of pay TV subscribers rising by 345 million between 2010 and 2025. The top five countries will account for 54% of global pay TV revenues by 2025, down from 62% in 2019.

The decline can be at least partly attributed to ongoing declines in the U.S. pay TV industry. Digital TV Research said the U.S. will lose $23 billion in revenues between 2019 and 2025, and that after peaking at $105 billion in 2015, U.S. pay TV revenues will drop to $56 billion in 2025.

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However, Digital TV Research said all hope is not lost for global pay TV.

“Despite poor results in some countries, there is still plenty of life left in pay TV. Digital TV Research forecasts 34 million additional pay TV subscribers between 2019 and 2025,” the firm wrote, adding that global total pay subscribers will reach 1.06 billion by 2025.

The firm said China will account for one third of the world’s pay TV subscribers, with 328 million expected by end-2025. India will account for another 183 million, meaning that China and India will together account for half the world’s pay TV subscribers by 2025.

Digital TV Research’s new global forecast comes amid continued concerns for the U.S. pay TV industry. eMarketer predicts that 6.6 million U.S. households will cancel their pay TV subscriptions this year and that by the end of 2020, 31.2 million U.S. households in aggregate will have cut the cord. That will leave 77.6 million U.S. households with cable, satellite, or telecom TV packages, down 7.5% year-over-year.