Each and every day, more people are putting time and money into streaming television services. The great original shows they offer, beyond the cost savings of cord-cutting, have long been heralded as attractive reasons to join up, and streaming services now have another reason for traditional cable television in the dust. The American Customer Satisfaction Index's latest report has revealed that in their debut on the list, streaming services beat out cable and satellite companies in overall customer satisfaction. And in some cases, that margin of victory gets pretty wide.
U.S. pay television scored an average of 62 out of 100 on this year's ASCI report, which is based on 45,292 customer surveys taken between the dates of April 19, 2017 and March 17, 2018. That result marked an 11-year average low for pay television. It had to sting even more considering streaming services overall averaged a score of 75 out of 100.
To go a little deeper into which streaming services did better than others, Variety reported Netflix, Sony Playstation Vue, and Twitch all led the pack with a customer satisfaction rate of 78, Apple iTunes and Microsoft Store scored a 77, while YouTube Red got a 76. Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Vudu, and Google Play all got a 75. Other surveyed services all scored in the 70s, minus Crackle, which got a 68. Which is still higher than the vast majority of cable and satellite company scores.
Crackle's low-end customer-satisfaction rating is nothing compared to how U.S. pay television services fared, with big players like Xfinity earning a score of 57. The only pay television services to score lower on ASCI's list were Frontier Communications (56) and Mediacom (55). AT&T's U-verse TV topped out the pay TV list with a score of 70, which tied with AT&T's own streaming service DirecTV Now, as well as Showtime Anytime's rating. With the difference between customer satisfaction between the two platforms being so staggering in so many cases, it wouldn't be surprising if this trend continued in years to come.
It's definitely worth mentioning that cable and satellite services weren't exactly weighed by the same metrics as streaming services. For example, customers rated call-center satisfaction for the former metric, while premium streaming services tend to handle things online, naturally. That aside, there were clear distinctions between categories the two shared, such as "understanding the bill," in which streaming averaged an 80 to pay TV's 73. So while the report may not have been entirely equal in representation, that's more or less because each operates in slightly different ways.
We here at CinemaBlend don't play favorites, as we see and cover the wonderful world of television across the board! On that note, be sure to see what's coming up in streaming with our Netflix and Amazon premiere guides. There's also our summer premiere guide, which is a general list of big premieres that streamers and cable television owners will both appreciate.