Broadband sales continue to boom at Comcast and Time Warner and the largest cable companies as a group added over 787,000 customers in the third quarter of the year. The largest telcos lost 143,000 customers for a net increase of 644,000 new broadband customers for the quarter. Not included in these numbers are the small telcos and cable companies as well as the FTTP providers and municipalities.
The counts for the largest companies are as follows for the quarter:
‘ End of 3Q New in 3Q
Comcast 22.9 M 320,000
Time Warner Cable 13.0 M 246,000
Charter 5.4 M 147,000
Cablevision 2.8 M 3,000
Suddenlink 1.2 M 21,600
Mediacom 1.1 M 16,000
WOW 0.7 M (800)
Cable ONE 0.5 M (171)
Other large cable companies 6.7 M 35,000
Total Large Cable 54.3 M 787,629
AT&T 15.8 M (129,000)
Verizon 9.2 M 2,000
CenturyLink 6.1 M (37,000)
Frontier 2.4 M 27,000
Windstream 1.1 M (11,200)
FairPoint 0.3 M (1,338)
Cincinnati Bell 0.3 M 6,200
Total Large Telcos 35.2 M (143,338)
Total Large Companies 89.5 M 644,291
You have to be a little careful in looking at the telco numbers because many of those companies are seeing increases in higher bandwidth products while seeing continuing erosion in the older and slower DSL products. For example, Verizon FiOS added 114,000 fiber customers for the quarter but lost almost the same number of DSL customers. AT&T said they gained 172,000 IP broadband customers, which is a combination of those on U-verse and fiber.
The 89.5 million broadband customers of these large companies represent over 66% of all households in the country (135 million total households). These companies actually serve more customers than shown. For example, there are many cases where these companies sell broadband to an apartment owner that then distributes it to the apartment units.
For the cable companies the quarterly increase of 787,629 is an annual growth rate of 5.8% and will annualize out to over 3 million new broadband subscribers. It’s obvious that more and more households are finding it mandatory to have a broadband connection and the whole market keeps creeping upward.