Endangered Cable TV Faces Extinction

Who watches cable TV anymore?

Since the late 1800s when the possibility to produce images was invented by Giovanna Caselli, many people have attempted to improve communication. After Alexander Bell’s invention of the telephone and Thomas Edison’s invention of the light bulb, the components needed for the first-ever television gradually fell into place.

With radio’s existence by the early 1900s, communication had already taken a large leap, but the revolutionary debut of the first black and white television on September 1927 by Philo Farnsworth greatly broadened the future of communication.

By 1955, half of all American homes had a television. No longer could people just hear their news, they could also see people, charts and figures. The first president to utilize this innovation, Harry S. Truman, could now directly communicate with the American people.

Moving forward, cable TV and the physical TV screen soon affected presidential elections as citizens could watch the candidates debate one another. Beforehand, a candidate’s ideas were the main factors important for presidential victory, but soon physical attributes and composure became important contributors too.

One leader who benefitted significantly from the television industry was President John F. Kennedy. During his presidential campaign against former-Vice President Richard Nixon, Kennedy’s handsome, youthful face won over the people and eventually won him the election.

Today, a new contender as entered the playing field with the rise of online streaming. No longer bright and shiny, the television manufacturing business still is not dying. Screens get cheaper and thinner by the year. However, the concept of television is. TV sports and news broadcasting may as well be endangered due to the rising popularity of on-demand services.

What is an on-demand service? An on-demand service provides easy access to goods anywhere and anytime. Less than a decade ago, a child would rush home, finish her homework and eat dinner quickly in order to catch a new episode on the Nickelodeon channel.

However, entertainment giants have taken notice of that child’s innocent anticipation and robbed children of that wholesome experience. Yes, there are benefits of saving a new episode for a later, better time, but there are consequences too. Children of newer generations lose important skills gained from token actions like waiting for a new TV episode. They won’t develop patience or even ambition as every service becomes accessible on demand.

Today, a child returns home, lounges around and pushes off homework to the last minute in favor of watching something. Adults take advantage of these services too. As a result, family TV time is also robbed as kids can simply replay any episode alone upstairs on their tablets.

Some companies have responded to their losing to on-demand services such as Netflix and Hulu and have invested in streaming services of their own. Dish Network and AT&T are two traditional Cable TV providers that have launched streaming services with Sling TV and DirecTV Now.

Still, the competition is fierce! Netflix, Hulu, Disney Plus, Amazon and more are strangling cable companies. Cord cutting is quickening, and Cable TV’s extinction may be inevitable.

Although many households are cord cutting, Cable TV still survives by offering a comfortable option for older generations. Those who are unfamiliar with using YouTube or the Internet can always rely on the handy-dandy remote to get them to Channel 11. Due to the decreasing number of Cable TV users, Cable TV channel bundles have also gotten more expensive in order to stay afloat. Today, Cable TV barely survives on its 100 million users. And while there are consequences of the growing on-demand society, there are still benefits as well. Changes in technology, entrepreneurship and societal attitude have painted an uncertain future for Cable TV.

Image Courtesy of Kiplinger

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