With just one exception, this is the first time Comcast hasn’t added at least 100,00 new subscribers, according to The Wall Street Journal. That exception came after the 2008 financial crisis and still resulted in 65,000 new subscribers.
Comcast seems to think the flatline is just temporary. CEO Brian Roberts cites “a unique and evolving macroeconomic environment” as limiting the company’s ability to add new subscribers. The spring quarter also tends to be Comcast’s slowest for new broadband subscribers by a good margin even in previous years, so there’s reason to believe the company could bounce back.
There were other problems at Comcast this quarter, though. Peacock, its streaming service, also failed to add new paid subscribers, staying flat at 13 million. Comcast tries to brush this off as a content problem, but the problem was that Comcast didn’t put out anything worth watching. The company claims its programming was “extraordinary” during the first quarter... but after that, we have to wait for its big movies and new shows to hit the service later this year. Comcast expects a “significant” uptick in growth once that happens.