The Vanishing TV Set: Televisions Are Disappearing From U.S. Homes

Jul 31, 2017  •  Post A Comment

Data from the Energy Information Administration confirms that the television set is beginning to disappear from American households.

“After years of insisting it wasn’t so, the TV Industrial Complex now admits that it’s contracting: The number of people paying for TV has been declining for several years,” Recode reports. “But that’s not the only part of the TV world that’s shrinking: Actual TV sets are disappearing from homes, too.”

The latest numbers available from the EIA show that after years of steady increases, the average number of television sets in U.S. homes shrank from 2.6 per household in 2009 to 2.3 in 2015, the story reports.

“The best-case scenario for that, put forward by the people who sell TV programming for a living, is that Americans are watching TV on devices that aren’t TVs, like laptops, tablets and phones,” Recode notes. “The flip side of that argument: You can do lots of other things on those devices, which creates even more competition for TV viewing time.”


  1. A decline in the number of people paying for TV (presumably meaning paying for cable, satellite, or whatever) has no correlation to the actual number of TV sets people have. Likewise, any decline in the sales of new TVs has no correlation either. How do they know how many sets people have now, compared to how many they had? Polling them on the way to electronics recyclers or landfills? Hell, I’ve got four sets… soon to be five. And I’m not really watching any more TV than I did when I had only one.

  2. Spot on John. EVERY WEEK we read an article or two about this same drivel, only to read soon after that the vast majority of viewing is still done “the traditional way” with a 60-inch, HI-Def TV set.

  3. When everyone was forced to get rid of their analog TVs for digital ones, I’m sure the number of TVs sold increased. Now most people have digital TVs in their homes. Could that be the causation of the decrease in new purchases?

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