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Streaming Is Replacing Cable as It Surges in Popularity

by Laura Bremner
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Streaming Is Replacing Cable as It Surges in Popularity

The TV and streaming video industries have changed due to the growth of digital platforms and the seemingly permanently changed preferences of consumers, as described in both Nielsen Reports of 2022 and 2023.

Streaming services have become the dominant form of video consumption for most viewers. The main reasons for choosing streaming services over traditional TV were the availability of on-demand content, the variety of options, and the lack of advertisements.

Here, we can recognize the phenomenon of “cord-cutting,” which refers to the practice of canceling cable or satellite TV subscriptions and switching to streaming services.

Reasons Why Viewers Prefer Streaming to Cable TV

The respondents cited several advantages of streaming services over conventional TV providers, such as:

●     Adaptability: Streaming services allow viewers to watch content on different devices, such as smartphones, tablets, laptops, and smart TVs. They also enable viewers to pause, resume, rewind, and fast-forward content according to their preferences.

●     Affordability: Streaming services are generally cheaper than cable or satellite TV subscriptions, and they often offer free trials or discounts for long-term plans. They also do not require contracts or commitments, giving viewers more flexibility and control over their spending.

●     Personalization: Streaming services use algorithms and viewer data to recommend content matching the viewers’ interests and moods. They use advanced algorithms to tailor the content to each viewer’s preferences and interests, suggesting programs that match the viewer’s previous choices, ratings, and feedback. Viewers can easily find something they like without switching between different platforms or channels.

●     Enhanced interactivity: Streaming services also offer enhanced interactivity and engagement for viewers. For instance, it allows viewers to catch up on missed episodes or re-watch memorable moments from their favorite shows or sports events. Many viewers regularly use the rewind function to start a program from the beginning or revisit specific scenes. Viewers also prefer the delayed viewing options, so they can watch content at their own pace and convenience rather than following a fixed schedule.


●     Less advertising: Unlike traditional networks, streaming services can offer an ad-free viewing experience. An ad-free model permits TV watchers not to get interrupted by commercials. Instead, you can immerse yourself fully in the content. Viewers can stay engaged and will more likely continue watching a movie or TV show in its entirety. Streaming services can serve ads, but typically, ad runtimes are minimal compared to network TV. You may also get the option to skip ads after watching only for a few short seconds.

A Surprising Cost Benefit to Both Viewers and Advertisers

Streaming platforms focus on original content and exclusive deals. To keep the content coming, they compete with each other to secure exclusive rights to popular sports events, influencers, and production companies. This gives them an edge over traditional media outlets and attracts more subscribers who want to access unique and diverse content.

Despite the large amounts of money they invest, they can still keep the services affordable, as streaming platforms have found a way to balance the needs of viewers and advertisers. Streaming platforms aim to offer flexibility in pricing options. Unlike cable providers that require expensive monthly subscriptions plus fees for premium channels, you can find lower-cost possibilities that fit your budget.

Most platforms offer ad-supported options that allow viewers to watch content for free or at a lower cost while still generating revenue for the platform and the advertisers. This trend is expected to increase the investment in digital advertising within the streaming industry.

Global Reach

Streaming platforms have a global reach because they cater to viewers from different countries and regions. They also offer subtitles and dubbing options for different languages, making the content more accessible and inclusive. Cable providers often have restrictions based on geographical locations. Cable networks often don’t have the distribution rights to offer content to worldwide audiences.

For viewers who travel frequently or work remotely, streaming platforms allow them to enjoy their favorite programs wherever they go, as long as they have an internet connection. Are you interested in watching a popular new series in the US while traveling abroad? You can still access geo-restricted content on the go with simple tools.

All you need is a suitable device, your Firestick, and a reliable and secure VPN for Firestick to ensure you connect to the streaming platform of your choice from wherever you are. Incidentally, connecting via VPN to access geo-blocked content also safeguards users to a large extent from potential scams and the inherent risks associated with online show streaming, such as malware, phishing, subscription scams, privacy concerns, and spoofing.

Original Programming

One roadblock that streaming services faced early on was customer retention. As more platforms emerged, companies started to wonder how to get viewers to choose them over the competition. Platforms decided to invest in original programming to create exclusive content that users can’t find anywhere else. “Tiger King” and “Stranger Things” are two examples of original streaming programming that helped increase Netflix’s viewership numbers. Watercooler shows and movies give people fear of missing out and make them more prone to try out a streaming service.

Data-Driven Insights

Streaming platforms have a distinct advantage over traditional television providers. The streamers can leverage data analytics to gain insights into viewer preferences and behaviors. The data gives streaming platforms the tools to improve content creation and distribution. Data collected by streaming platforms help companies decide on content that bridges current entertainment gaps. The information gleaned by streamers will also assist with marketing efforts in real time.

Technological Advancements

In the early days of streaming, consumers accessed online content via computers. Viewers navigated to websites and could log onto their streaming accounts and view available options from the company’s content library. Technological advancements paved the way for streaming to have a broader appeal.

With the availability of broadband internet, streaming capabilities have improved a lot. Without high-speed internet, viewers would not have the seamless experience they enjoy today. Wireless, DSL, and satellite internet don’t offer the high speeds required to stream TV shows and movies without glitches.


The market for streaming devices has exploded over the last decade. Options like the Amazon Firestick and Apple TV make downloading and using streaming applications easy. Smart TVs permit consumers to stream without any extra equipment. Gaming consoles even allow downloading streaming apps to play through your TV. Consumers can enjoy content on the go on their tablets and smartphones.

The Way Forward for the Entertainment Industry

Streaming platforms have changed the game for both viewers and advertisers. They offer more choices, convenience, affordability, and personalization than traditional media outlets. Streamers have even tapped into the live TV market. Providers like Hulu have created packages that include live TV programming to allow viewers to watch content live, such as sports games and awards shows. Streaming providers also create opportunities for new and innovative content creation and distribution.

The time has come to accept the fact that streaming platforms are here to stay, and they will continue to shape the future of media and entertainment. The only solution left for cable providers is to adapt and consider scalability to keep viewership numbers competitive.


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