DIRECTV, U-verse: 6M Subs Lost Since AT&T Purchase


DIRECTV and U-verse have lost roughly six million subscribers since AT&T took control of the satcaster in the second quarter of 2015.

The satellite service had 20.2 million subscribers at the end of the second quarter five years ago. U-verse, which was owned by AT&T prior to the company’s July 2015 purchase of DIRECTV, had 5.97 million at the same point.

That means that AT&T’s two premium TV services combined for 26.2 million subscribers, which made it the nation’s leading TV provider in 2015.

But yesterday, AT&T reported that DIRECTV and U-verse had 20.4 million subscribers at the end of the fourth quarter of 2019 after it lost 945,000 combined in the three month period. (AT&T no longer breaks out the subscriber numbers for DIRECTV and U-verse, choosing instead to combine them.)

The losses represent a 22.2 percent decrease in subscribers in four and one-half years.

AT&T now sits behind Comcast in total video subscribers. The cable operator reported having 21.2 million at the end of the fourth quarter of 2019 after losing 149,000 in the period.

Cord-cutting is certainly one reason why AT&T has lost so many subscribers in the last 54 months. But by comparison, Comcast has lost just 1.1 million subscribers during that time, far less than the six million lost by AT&T. (Comcast had 22.2 million at the end of the second quarter of 2015.)

In addition, AT&T’s answer to cord-cutting — the live streaming service, AT&T TV Now, formerly DIRECTV Now — has lost 934,000 subscribers in the last 15 months. AT&T TV Now had 926,000 subscribers at the end of 2019’s fourth quarter, AT&T reported yesterday.

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6 comments on “DIRECTV, U-verse: 6M Subs Lost Since AT&T Purchase”

  1. …. and they hired people from Indonesia in China and any other third world country to answer their phones I got tired of man I cut them all I said piss on you horrible company AT&T on every levels they just need to go out of business and be done with it.

  2. The losses had everything to do with their lengthy fight for network carriage fees. Once football started – they lost me – switched back to CATV

  3. As a former DTV subscriber, I must agree with Rocky Williams. DTV customer service was below horrible. They saved money on hiring 3rd world customer service people, but if you could get past the language barrier, those people never followed thru on what they said. An absolute horrible experience. I have gone back to Dish whom I am very pleased with.

  4. Couldn’t happen to a more deserving company. ATT told Congress that merging with Direct TV and lower cost and prices, but almost immediately after Congress permitted the merger, ATT raised prices. AT is the Donald Trump of the content providers… proceed accordingly.

  5. AT&T lost my cell phone and DirecTV business due to dishonesty. The people I dealt with online offered deals that the company would not honor. I talk family and friends to cancel or not sign up in the first place. They need to rethink they’re business model!

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