Global pay TV subscribers at 1.06 billion in 2025

Thursday, May 14th, 2020
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Global pay TV to reach 1.06 billion subscribers

Digital TV Research forecasts 35 million additional pay TV subscribers between 2019 and 2025, taking the global total to 1.06 billion. Based on forecasts for 138 countries, the number of pay TV subscribers passed 1 billion in 2018.

Global pay TV households by platform (millions) - Analogue cable TV, Digital cable TV, Pay IPTV, Pay satellite, FTA satellite, FTA digital terrestrial (DTT), Pay DTT, Analogue Terrestrial; Total pay TV subscribers - 2010, 2019, 2020, 2025
Source: Digital TV Research

Excluding analog cable TV, digital pay TV growth is really impressive – rocketing from 380 million subscribers in 2010 onto 990 million at end-2019 and on to 1,062 million by 2025.

IPTV is the pay TV winner. IPTV will add 84 million subscribers between 2019 and 2025 to take its total to 391 million. IPTV will increase its share of pay TV subscribers from 30% in 2019 to 37% in 2025.

Satellite TV will lose 4 million subscribers between 2019 and 2025. Satellite TV will generate 20% of pay TV subscribers by 2025; down slightly from 21% in 2019.

Cable TV will account for 40% of all pay TV subscribers by 2025, down from 47% in 2019 and massively down from 74% in 2010. There will be 430 million cable TV subs (both analog and digital) by 2025, 101 million lower than the 531 million recorded in 2010.

There were still 38 million analog cable TV subscribers by end-2019. However, it is not just analog that is the problem for cable. Digital cable TV will lose subscribers – falling from 446 million at end-2019 to 429 million by 2025.

Simon Murray, Principal Analyst at Digital TV Research, said: “Our forecasts are based on the assumption that professional sports will restart in August following relaxations in the Covid 19 lockdown. If this does not happen, then pay TV will experience considerable churn.”