Fast Company

Breaking Down The Cost Of Watching Live Sports On Cable

With increasing subscription costs, how long will subscribers hold on?

In a DVR world, sports is about the only stuff regularly watched live--which allows sports networks to demand increasingly higher fees from cable providers. On August 17, another 24-hour sports channel joins the gold rush: Fox Sports 1, a reboot of the niche audience Speed channel. How much more will subscribers tolerate?

$0.31

How much Speed charged cable providers per subscriber, per month

$1

How much Fox Sports 1 will charge cable companies per subscriber, per month (estimated)

323%

Increase in fee-generated revenue from Fox Sports 1 (estimated)

$5.54

How much ESPN charges cable companies per subscriber, per month, the highest price of any network

18

Number of sports networks among 1993’s top 20 most expensive channels (excluding premium channels)

20

Number of sports networks among today’s top 20 most expensive channels (excluding premium channels)

150%

Increase in price for an average cable subscription since 1993, from $29.43 per month to $73.44 per month

Except for $1 figure, Data from SNL Kagan

Illustration by Luke Bott

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