Streaming services now cost average user more than cable TV, report reveals

Popular streaming services increased subscription prices by up to 75 per cent between 2022 and 2024 (iStock/ Getty Images)
Popular streaming services increased subscription prices by up to 75 per cent between 2022 and 2024 (iStock/ Getty Images)

Subscriptions to streaming services cost the average US subscriber nearly $1,000 per year, according to a new report.

A survey by online platform Bango revealed that American customers pay an average of $924 in annual subscriptions, which combined with internet fees is more than the average cable TV plan.

The shift can be attributed to sharp price rises for popular platforms like Netflix and Disney Plus, combined with an increasingly fractured streaming space.

Of the 5,000 people polled in the Subscription Wars survey, roughly a quarter paid over $1,000 each year, while around 5 per cent paid more than $2,000.

Nearly three quarters of those surveyed said they would prefer a single content hub to bundle together all of their subscriptions.

“As the war for new sign ups has grown fiercer, so too has the drive towards monetising each subscriber as effectively as possible,” the report noted.

“Most recently, subscription services have achieved this through increased fees, and crackdowns on password sharing.”

Netflix launched a highly-publicised crackdown on password sharing in the UK and US last year in an attempt to grow its subscriptions and increase its profits.

According to the latest report, 35 per cent of American subscribers are now paying for a service that they previously accessed for free as a result of such policies.

Last August, analysis from the Financial Times revealed that the combined cost of popular streaming services had overtaken traditional cable television for the first time, with the average cable TV package costing US users $83 per month.

The average customer of streaming services now pays $77 per month, which does not include the cost for the internet required to access them. Recent analysis from Consumer Reports suggest the average US household pays between $60 and $90 per month for internet service.

Between 2022 and 2023, the cost of Netflix’s ad-free subscription rose from $9.99 to $15.49, while Disney+ rose from $7.99 to $11.99.

Rising costs have helped contribute to a surge in piracy, with figures from data intelligence firm Muso revealing last year that visits to illegal streaming sites rose by nearly 9 per cent in 2022.