Five years of cord-cutting at Time Warner Cable in a single chart

January 30, 2014
January 30, 2014

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Time Warner Cable reported quarterly earnings this morning. The maligned cable operator, which is the focal point for a takeover battle that could alter the industry landscape permanently, revealed that it lost another 217,000 video customers during the quarter. Consistent with a trend that has been playing out for the past four years, it gained some residential broadband customers—39,000 of them—but nowhere near enough to make up for the decline in video subscribers, the true “cord-cutters.”

As the above chart shows, you have to go all the way back to early 2009 to find a month in which the company added more video customers than it lost. As for the rise in broadband customers, it was better than in the previous two quarters, but still pretty weak—especially considering that Time Warner Cable has a quasi-monopoly in some of America’s most populous regions, like New York City and Southern California. If you want decent internet in Manhattan, for example, it’s often your only option.

* note: before Q3 2010, the company did not distinguish between residential and business video subscribers.

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