Cable and satellite TV companies have begun releasing their earnings reports for the latest quarter. Here is a summary of earnings reports for selected companies and what they reveal about the industry’s prospects.
— April 18: Verizon Communications Inc. says it added a net 169,000 FiOS video customers during the first three months of the year, ending the quarter with 4.9 million and representing a 12.5 per cent increase from a year earlier.
— April 23: AT&T Inc. says it added 232,000 U-verse TV subscribers, which it says is the strongest growth in more than two years. It ends the quarter with 4.8 million.
— April 25: Time Warner Cable Inc. says it lost a net 118,000 cable TV customers in the quarter, to end with 12.1 million. Jason Bazinet at Citigroup says the higher-than-expected decline appears to be due to customers leaving after signing up in late 2011 to aggressively priced packages. Cable companies usually provide heavily discounted prices for the first year of service.
— May 1: Comcast Corp. says price increases on cable TV helped boost its results, as subscribers paid an average of $3.40 more per month compared with the same period last year. Comcast lost 60,000 cable-TV subscribers, breaking a trend of slowing losses. However, it’s still better than smaller cable companies at keeping customers in the face of competition from satellite and phone companies.
— May 7: Charter Communications Inc., DirecTV Group Inc.
— May 9: Cablevision Systems Corp.