Cord Cutting Trend Cost AT&T Nearly One Million Pay TV Customers in Q2

The 'cord cutting' trend continues to hit communications companies. AT&T said Wednesday it lost nearly one million pay TV customers in the second quarter of 2019.

According to the report, AT&T revenue was up during the three month period, but income fell. The number of pay TV customers was down by 946,000, mainly for the company's Direct TV services. The drop follows an ongoing trend regarding how consumers get their TV programming.

"This is a typical consumer trend," said Margaret Young, Associate Dean of Business at Texas Woman's University in Denton. "We're always looking for things that make our lives easier, and this does.

Cameran Barber of Denton is about to go to college. He said he will depend on streaming services for his TV needs.

"It would be more cost effective for me to just continue with the streaming service," said Barber. "Rather than having to pay for satellite installation or cable installation."

For AT&T, gains in business and wireless helped compensate for the losses. During the company's earnings call Wednesday, AT&T bosses discussed the coming of the internet-based AT&T TV, an alternative to satellite TV. Later, the company also plans to launch the streaming service HBO Max.

Experts expect providers to keep coming up with other ways to deliver programming, as the cord cutting trend continues.

"You see more and more people jumping ship," said Young. "Initially, it was getting off of cable, going to Dish or Direct TV. Now you see the unbundling of those services, so everyone's streaming."

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