Brazilian 2017 pay TV fall worse than expected

New official data about the Brazilian pay TV market, after nine months of blackout, reveals that the pay television business lost nearly 939,000 subscribers during 2017, about 4,99% of its base, according to watchdog Anatel.

Private estimations, based on company reports and projection of official data until April 2017 had estimated the subscriber loss at 2%-3%, according to what is defined as a subscriber by each source.

According to Samuel Possebon at Teletime, the Year End 2017 base equals the state of the market in October 2013 and represents a loss of about two million subscribers against the peak registered in November 2014.

In addition to the blackout, it appears that Anatel has modified the way it presents the data; therefore, it will take some time to connect what has been reported until April 2017 and the new data string.

Per Teletime, DTH operator Sky (AT&T) and Oi TV have been the only operators to have increased their subscriber base during 2017; America Movil's ClaroTV/Net, lost 8,5% of its subscribers, while Telefonica's VivoTV saw 7,8% of its clients departing.

In addition to the economy situation that affected the population's purchasing power, Teletime mentions piracy —in the way of IP set-top-boxes that presumably allow downloading TV beams from illegal sites— and Netflix, although Possebon clarifies that 'there are no evidences that the OTT market has substituted (linear) pay television in the proportion of its fall'.