Cable business is growing
Comcast’s (CMCSA) cable business generated revenues of $13.8 billion in Q3 2018, an increase of 3.4% YoY. Cable revenues have been rising for the past several quarters, as can be seen in the chart below. Revenues were mainly driven by strong growth in business services units, high-speed Internet, and advertising revenues. The growing popularity of Xfinity Mobile and rising revenue growth from the X1 licensing agreements also have been benefiting the cable business. However, video and voice revenues declined in the quarter.
During the quarter, the cable company added 288,000 customers and crossed the 30 million customer mark driven by net additions of 363,000 in high-speed broadband customers. Analysts had forecasted 295,000 net additions in new broadband customers. Total video customers lost were 106,000, which was better than the expected losses of 153,000. In Q3, voice customers fell by 35,000.
Comcast is losing residential video customers
Recently, many pay-TV companies like Comcast are losing subscribers due to a decline in the number of customers subscribing to traditional video services as a result of increasing cord cutting activity. Customers prefer to subscribe to OTT (over-the-top) offerings at competitive prices instead of paying high prices for cable TV connections. Amazon’s (AMZN) Amazon Prime, Hulu, Netflix (NFLX), and YouTube are the leading providers of OTT offerings.
While Comcast had to forego 95,000 residential video customers in Q3 2018, telecom behemoth AT&T (T) lost 359,000 satellite TV customers and added 13,000 U-verse TV customers. Charter (CHTR) lost 66,000 residential video customers in the third quarter.