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Americans are still overpaying for cable TV

To the tune of $1,600 a year.

streaming services on tv
Image: KnowTechie

American cable and satellite TV subscribers are paying a small fortune for channels they never watch. A new report from Cordcutting.com has some sobering statistics about the true cost of entertainment in the US.

The biggest shock to us was how few channels are actually watched. Let’s break it down. According to the study, the average cable bill is $147 a month, up from $96 a month three years ago. That gives access to roughly 190 channels.

Would you be able to guess how many people watch those channels? We couldn’t, and it turns out the average cable subscriber only watch 15 of them. Fifteen!?! That means each channel is nearly $10 to the subscriber, even if they subsidize the ones they don’t watch.

By paying $147 per month to watch only 15 channels, the average pay-TV customer shells out $9.57 per channel watched – an amount that rivals the monthly cost of most streaming services.

That means you’re still funding FOX, even if you never watch any of their channels. The flip side is also true, paying for CNN even if you refuse to watch it.

cost of cable tv americans graph
Image: KnowTechie via Cordcutting.com

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The traditional, channel bundle model is to blame and could cost you $1,600 a year. You overpay for what you watch and pay for those things you find abhorrent.

Streaming has somewhat fixed this, although cable cord-cutters are still outnumbered. 42 percent of American households get all of their entertainment from the internet. Until that balance shifts, American cable TV subscribers will still overpay for their services.

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Maker, meme-r, and unabashed geek. Hardware guy here at KnowTechie, if it runs on electricity (or even if it doesn't) I probably have one around here somewhere. My hobbies include photography, animation, and hoarding Reddit gold.

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