Charter’s Spectrum TV service has done the unthinkable. The company reported today that it added a net of 102,000 video subscribers in the second quarter despite the Coronavirus shutdown and the growing trend of cord-cutting.
In contrast, Comcast reported yesterday that it lost a net of 477,000 video customers in the second quarter, blaming everything from “economic pressures” to the difficulty of doing in-home installations during a pandemic. AT&T, which owns DIRECTV and U-verse, lost nearly double that amount during the time period, citing similar difficulties.
But Charter said today that the second quarter went exceedingly well for them, particularly compared to last year’s second quarter, and other recent financial quarters when the cable operator showed net losses.
“Residential video customers increased by 102,000 in the second quarter of 2020, while second quarter 2019 residential video customers decreased by 150,000. As of June 30, 2020, Charter had 15.7 million residential video customers,” the company stated in a press release.
In a presentation to investors, Charter acknowledged that the pay TV industry is experiencing some difficulties now, but added that it’s ‘manageable.’
“Traditional video market in transition, but transition manageable even as video units decline,” the company stated.
Charter executives will hold a conference call later today with financial analysts and the company’s unique success in the video category will likely be a hot topic.
Update: Tom Rutledge, Charter’s CEO, was not exactly forthcoming today when asked about the video sub increase during the analyst call:
Rutledge on how Charter managed to grow pay-TV subs in Q2: 'We grew faster than the rate of video decline… it's that simple'
— Jeff Baumgartner (@thebauminator) July 31, 2020
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