(NEWS CENTER Maine) — Market research companies expect more people to get rid of cable TV over the next year.

According to Nielsen’s National Television Household Universe Estimates, there are 119.9 million TV homes in the U.S. for the 2018-19 TV season. Data from NScreenMedia shows more than 90 million of those still have Pay TV: television broadcasting in which viewers pay by subscription to watch a particular channel.

According to Leichtman Research, top cable, satellite, and telco TV operators lost 1.05 million subscribers in Q3 2018. Here’s how each segment fared:

  • Cable lost 244,000 subscribers, or 0.5%.
  • Telco TV lost 79,000, or 0.9%.
  • Satellite performed the worst, losing 726,000 or 2.3%.~

Some people in Maine are getting rid of cable completely as the state's major cable company Spectrum, slowly implements its all-digital service, requiring customers to get a new "digital receiver" installed.

"Now that the companies have come in and gone digital, they are taking advantage of all the people -- not only here in Maine, but just about everywhere," said Mark Smith, a Spectrum customer who recently got rid of his cable. "You trust a company. You think they're going to be faithful to year. I have been faithful paying bills for years and years, but it's constantly gone up and up."

A Spectrum spokesperson says most customers will be eligible for a free digital receiver, for a limited period of time, depending on their package.

After the free period ends - or for any additional boxes beyond the free ones a customer may be eligible for - the monthly fee for digital receivers will be $7.50 per month for Spectrum television packages and $11.75 per box for those who have legacy Time Warner cable packages, says Spectrum's Charter Senior Communications Manager, Heidi Vandenbrouck.

If Spectrum customers have questions, they can give call 1-844-278-3408.