16% Consider Themselves Cord Cutters

Cord Cutting is All Talk, Provided Consumers Can Find the Shows They Want. A new Rovi survey suggests stronger discovery strategies can help providers increase content consumption and boost subscriber satisfaction. The global study aimed to uncover trends in viewer behavior related to discovery, search, and recommendations for entertainment content and programming.

Rovi Corporation released findings from a sponsored survey of pay-​TV and over-​the-​top content subscribers in the U.S., Europe and Asia. The global study aimed to uncover trends in viewer behavior related to discovery, search, and recommendations for entertainment content and programming.

Above all, the survey revealed that despite widespread panic among traditional pay-​TV providers over subscribers cutting the cord, only 3% of global viewers had actually done so.


  • 57% of all respondents had given cord cutting either ‰ÛÏa lot of‰Û thought or ‰ÛÏsome‰Û thought
  • At 7%, the U.S. had the highest number of actual cord cutters compared to the other regions
  • In Germany, France, China, and India only 2% of respondents in each of those countries were actual cord cutters

Moreover, instead of service fees, the survey found difficulty of content discovery to be chief among viewers‰Ûª woes.

  • Nearly 73% of all respondents said they are ‰ÛÏextremely‰Û or ‰ÛÏsomewhat‰Û frustrated when they can‰Ûªt locate enjoyable content
  • On average, respondents spend 19 minutes per day searching for something to watch
  • 33% said they frequently find nothing to watch, along with 7% who turn off their TV or other device ‰ÛÏevery time‰Û because they can‰Ûªt find anything to watch

Overwhelmingly, consumers are willing to pay for entertainment programming, provided they can find it.

  • 67% of all respondents said they would be likely to extend their contract, upgrade their service, or sign up with a provider if they offered better search or recommendations
  • 51% of all respondents felt their content provider should focus on improving the customer experience by making it easier and more effective to search for shows
  • 28% felt their content provider should do a better job of giving helpful TV program and movie recommendations
  • 90% of respondents in both China and India said they would likely sign up with a provider that offered more effective search or recommendations

In keeping with their desire for easier content discovery, viewers also revealed interest in natural language voice-​based entertainment queries

  • 54% of all respondents said they would either ‰ÛÏdefinitely‰Û or ‰ÛÏprobably‰Û spend an additional $1.99 per month for access to a new innovative voice command search feature

‰ÛÏThe ultimate goal for service and content providers should be to connect consumers to the entertainment programming that is most relevant to them at any given moment across a range of devices,‰Û said Michael Hawkey, senior vice president and general manager of discovery, Rovi. ‰ÛÏProviders need to offer the same level of advanced usability that consumers now expect from any other web, mobile or social media service. Specifically, they stand to potentially gain increased revenue and happier customers by providing better search, recommendation, and voice-​enabled discovery features.‰Û

The research findings were the result of an online survey of 4,000 pay-​TV and OTT subscribers across 7 countries worldwide with 1,000 interviews completed in the U.S., and 500 interviews completed each in the U.K., France, Germany, China, Japan, and India.

According to AudienceSCAN, 16% of U.S. adults consider themselves to be cord cutters. But consider this, 41% are still getting most of their local news from TV and 15% are getting it from newspapers. They're not ignoring ads, either: 42% took action after seeing a commercial on TV in the past 30 days. And it wouldn't hurt your advertisers to reach out to them with ads on social networks too, because they are 70% more likely than average consumers to take action from those marketing efforts.

AudienceSCAN data is available as part of a subscription to AdMall for Agencies. Media companies can access AudienceSCAN data through the Audience Intelligence Reports inåÊAdMall.

Courtney Huckabay
Courtney is the Editor for SalesFuel Today. She analyzes secondary customer research and our primary AudienceSCAN research. Courtney is a graduate of Middle Tennessee State University.