Charter Lost 686,000 Spectrum Video Subs in 2022

Charter Communications Jan. 27 said it lost 145,000 Spectrum pay-TV subscribers in the fourth quarter (ended Dec. 31, 2022). The cable TV operator ended the year with 15.1 million residential and small business video subs — down 686,000 subs from 15.8 million at the end of 2021. Charter added 33,000 small business video subs to end the year with 650,000.

As with other multiplatform video distributors, Charter is also an internet service provider. The company added y 92,000 high-speed internet (or broadband) customers, which was down from an increase of 172,000 broadband subscribers in the previous-year period. Charter ended the year with 30.4 million broadband subs, up from 30 million at the end of 2021.

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“We continued to execute well in 2022, growing customer relationships, revenue and pre-tax earnings,” new CEO Chris Winfrey said in a statement.

Last November Charter and Comcast announced that their joint streaming video venture would adopt the Xumo name, evolving the brand from a free ad-supported streaming TV (FAST) service to an entertainment ecosystem inclusive of streaming devices, content, and a platform for proprietary and third parties to reach audiences at scale.

Charter was one of the first pay-TV operators to offer standalone Spectrum TV streaming service to broadband-only subscribers, which included a free Roku video device.

Charter: Spectrum TV Lost 211,000 Q3 Subs as Broadband Growth Cools

Charter Communications Oct. 28 reported that its Spectrum TV business lost 211,000 residential pay-TV subscribers in the third quarter, ended Sept. 30. The loss was up almost 59% from 133,000 subs lost in the previous-year period. The cable operator ended the period with 15.3 million subs compared with 15.9 million a year ago.

Separately, Charter said it added 61,000 Spectrum Internet subscribers, down almost 75% from the addition of 243,000 subs in the prior-year period. The company ended the quarter with 30.3 million high-speed internet subs, up from 29.9 million a year earlier.

The company also lost 271,000 household telephone subs, up 16% from 230,000 subs lost in the prior-year period. The company added 382,000 mobile subscribers, up 66% from a gain of 230,000 subs a year ago. Charter ended the period with 9.2 million land-line subscribers and 4.7 million wireless.

“As I look at our existing advanced offerings, and our future product capabilities, we are well positioned to grow our business at very attractive rates for many years to come,” retiring CEO Tom Rutledge said in a statement.

Current CFO Chris Winfrey will assume the CEO position, effective Dec. 1.

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Charter Offering Spectrum TV Subs Free Streaming Access to Peacock

Charter Communications and NBCUniversal Dec. 13 announced that the latter’s Peacock’s premium tier subscription streaming platform is available at no extra cost for 12 months to its near 16 million Spectrum TV customers. The company’s 30 million Spectrum internet-only subs get free 90-day access.

“As the video landscape rapidly changes, we are committed to innovating and finding ways to provide the most valuable content to our customers, wherever and whenever they want, and making Peacock Premium available … furthers this goal,” Tom Montemagno, EVP of programming acquisition for Charter, said in a statement.

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In addition to current-season programming from NBC and Telemundo, Peacock offers a catalog of original programming, including dramas “Dr. Death,” “Dan Brown’s The Lost Symbol” and “One of Us Is Lying”; comedies including “Saved by the Bell,” “Girls5eva,” “Rutherford Falls” and “We Are Lady Parts”; reality hits including “The Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip,” “Paris in Love,” “Siwa’s Dance Pop Revolution,” “Hart to Heart” and “Baking It”; new episodes of “The Amber Ruffin Show”; upcoming original series including “Bel-Air,” “MacGruber,” “Wolf Like Me,” “Bust Down,” “Killing It,” “Queer as Folk” and “Joe Exotic” (WT); live sports including the NFL, Premier League, Olympics and WWE; and a massive library of hit shows, including “The Office,” “Yellowstone,” “Modern Family,” “Parks and Recreation,” “George Lopez,” “Psych,” “Two and a Half Men,” “Everybody Loves Raymond,” “Friday Night Lights,” “House,” “Downton Abbey,” “The Real Housewives,” “Law & Order,” “One Chicago,” “Dateline,” “Top Chef,” “Below Deck” and “Curious George,” as well as movies from recent and classic movies like Halloween Kills and Psycho, to the “Harry Potter,” “Back to the Future” and “Despicable Me” franchises.

“Peacock is an increasingly important destination for viewers who rely on NBCUniversal for even more original and library content, including entertainment, Hispanic, news and sports programming,” said Matt Bond, chairman of content distribution at NBCUniversal.

Peacock, which launched in June 2020, topped 54 million sign-ups and 20 million paid subs through June 30.

The service is available on the Roku platform; Amazon FireTV and Fire tablets; Apple devices, including iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Apple TV 4K and Apple TV HD; Google platforms and devices, including Android, Android TV devices, Chromecast and Chromecast built-in devices; Microsoft’s Xbox One S and Xbox One X; Sony PlayStation4 and PlayStation 4 Pro; Samsung Smart TVs; Vizio SmartCast TVs and LG Smart TVs.

Charter Sees More Gain in Spectrum Video Subs

In the ongoing drain of pay-TV subscribers in the linear TV market, Charter Communications has been an anomaly. The company’s Spectrum pay-TV brand has gained or retained subscribers, even as consumers migrate to over-the-top video.

That didn’t change in the third quarter (ended Sept. 30). Charter said it added 67,000 Spectrum TV subscribers in the quarter to finish the period with 16.23 million subs. The service had 16.24 million subs in the previous-year period.

CEO Tim Rutledge was enthusiastic about the company growth in broadband distribution — a growing lifeline for the pay-TV industry. The company ended the quarter with 26.8 million high-sped Internet subs — up 9% from 24.6 million a year ago.

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“We’ve added two million customer relationships in the past year and remain focused on executing a proven operating and investment strategy that works for customers, employees and the communities we serve,” Rutledge said in a statement.