The 14 largest cable and telcos added a net of some 625,000 broadband subscribers in 3Q’16, but negative telco broadband growth continues its trend, according to the latest market data about broadband subscriber trends from Leichtman Research Group (LRG).
Representing about 95 percent of the U.S. market, the 14 top U.S. broadband service providers serve a combined total of 92.5 million subscribers. Top cable companies account for 57.8 million, while top telcos account for 34.7 million, LRG highlights in a news release.
In addition, according to LRG:
- The top cable companies added about 775,000 subscribers in 3Q 2016 — 99% of the net additions for the top cable companies in 3Q 2015
- The top phone companies lost about 150,000 broadband subscribers in 3Q 2016 — similar to the loss of about 145,000 in 3Q 2015
- Telco providers have had net broadband losses in five of the past six quarters
- In the first three quarters of 2016, cable companies added about 2,440,000 broadband subscribers, while Telcos lost about 475,000 subscribers.
Broadband Subscriber Trends
Commenting on LRG’s latest U.S. broadband market research results, company president and principal analyst Bruce Leichtman said: “While major providers now account for nearly 92.5 million broadband subscribers in the US, the broadband market continues to expand with top cable providers driving the growth.
“Over the past year, cable companies added more than 3.5 million broadband subscribers, accounting for 118% of the 2.995 million net broadband additions.”
Comcast set the pace for cable broadband companies in 3Q, adding a net 329,000 subscribers. That brought its total broadband subscriber base to 24.316 million, according to LRG’s count.
Charter followed, adding a net 387,000 to end 3Q with 22.202 million broadband subscribers. Altice and Mediacom have much smaller subscriber bases, but they each added a net 17,000 in 3Q to bring their total broadband subscriber bases to 4.122 and 1.145 million, respectively.
Negative Telco Broadband Growth
Among the largest U.S. telco broadband providers, AT&T lost a net 23,000 subscribers to end 3Q with a subscriber base of 15.618 million. Verizon followed, adding a net 24,000 to bring its total broadband subscriber base to 7.038 million.
CenturyLink lost a net 40,000 broadband subscribers in 3Q, ending the period with a total subscriber base of 5.950 million. Frontier (-99,000) and Windstream (-12,800) also wound up 3Q with fewer broadband subscribers: 4.404 million for Frontier and 1.063 million for Windstream.