Cablevision Systems Corp. Chief Executive James Dolan said the number of customers paying for the traditional big bundle of TV channels is going to shrink by about 20% to 25% over the next five years, as consumers opt instead for smaller packages of channels or online video streaming solutions.
Mr. Dolan warned an investor conference Tuesday that the reduction in subscribers is “going to have an impact on the programmers” — the big media companies that collect fees for each customer who receives their TV networks. For operators such as Cablevision, selling higher-margin broadband service could help make up for dwindling video customers.
The shift is spurred, in part, by channel owners themselves going “over the top” and selling online video services directly to consumers, such as Time Warner Inc.’s Web subscription to HBO Now and similar offerings from CBS Corp.’s CBS and Showtime. Those products are going to become “more and more attractive to customers,” Mr. Dolan said.
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