Streaming Services Are Replacing Normal TV

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Shruti Patel

Has Netflix become the new normal?

Sydney Crum, J1 Reporter

We are living in a time period where new and great TV shows are coming out all of the time. Despite this, it seems that over the last few years, far fewer of them have been on traditional television and instead have been on streaming services. As time goes on and streaming services become more and more popular, the traditional TV model begins to make less and less sense.
Though traditional TV isn’t completely gone, or even close, it seems that every year, more people decide to switch to streaming services. In 2019, a study from Deloitte found that 69% of consumers pay for streaming services while 65% pay for cable or satellite television. This is a 59% increase in people using streaming services since 2009.
It doesn’t appear that this trend is going to slow down either. With streaming services, you have access to hundreds, if not thousands, of movies and shows that can be watched at any time as long as you have internet access. Cable, on the other hand, has a far more limited amount of options, with shows only coming on at specific times during the day and new shows coming on weekly.

Another aspect of traditional television that most streaming services don’t have is commercials. Though they may seem normal, if you’re invested in the plot of a show it is incredibly annoying to be interrupted by about four minutes of ads. Most streaming services have no ads, or at least have a higher price you can pay that removes the ads. Even with the large amount of money you have to pay for cable television you still have to watch through the commercials if you want to continue your show.

The prices of these services are another important factor in all of this. To pay for a cable service like Spectrum (at the lowest price options), it will cost you, in total, $74.45 a month for the first year, then $99.45 per month from then on out. Though prices vary, most cable providers are somewhere in this price range. On the other hand, with streaming services, you can get Netflix, the Disney Plus bundle ( includes Disney Plus, Hulu, and ESPN+), and HBO Max all for $48 dollars a month. These services are also all ad-free at this price and offer thousands of titles that you can watch anytime.

Traditional TV does have some benefits though. Sometimes it is nice to not have as many options. Though I’d rather have the many different options for shows and movies than not have them, sometimes it can be a bit overwhelming to choose from. This is especially true when you have a shorter time and you just want to throw something on for a few minutes. Is that a reason to get cable? No, but it is something nice about traditional TV that the streaming services don’t really have.

We are at a point in time where everything is changing because of the internet. One of these changes is the way that people watch TV and movies. With all of the benefits that streaming services provide, I don’t think it’s unreasonable to say that cable will have been replaced by streaming services in the next few decades, though we’re not completely there yet. That being said, we’re already at the point that when you hear about a new, great show, chances are it’s on a streaming service.