Variety: Rise of Netflix Comes as Pay Cable Subs Shrink

Variety: Rise of Netflix Comes as Pay Cable Subs Shrink

Netflix and fellow streaming-based services enjoyed a subscriber boost over an 18-month span, while premium cable channels suffered a combined 6 percent drop.

Coincidence? Trend? Or are the two unrelated?

Variety posts those numbers while asking if the figures tell a bigger story of consumer choice in the streaming age.

Total U.S. households that subscribe to HBO, Showtime, Starz and other premium TV channels declined by 6 percentage points over an 18-month span, from 38% in March 2012 to 32% in August 2013, according to a report from research firm NPD Group. Over the same period, subscriptions to Netflix and other subscription video-on-demand services including Hulu Plus and Amazon Prime Instant Video rose 4 percentage points, from 23% to 27%.

Those figures sound conclusive, but Variety argues it’s hard to pin a “cause and effect” label on the statistics.

It’s likely Netflix and its ilk–Amazon Prime, for one–will impact the current cable climate in some capacity. Consumers can access these services through more devices than ever before, including both the Google Chromecast and various Roku players for well under $100.