I'm not quite sure when - but sometime in our lifetime, cable television overtook broadcast TV as the default way that American's receive their video entertainment.  Roof-top antennas?  Gone.  Coaxial cable?  Hello!

So it was bound to happen sooner or later:  The cable companies realized that we were somewhat "captive" consumers, and they started raising their rates.  How much?  Well, when cable first came out in the 1970's, the average monthly bill was much less than $10.  Today?  The national average is just under $90 a month.

Perhaps the most worrisome detail is the rate in which cable rates have gone up of the last few years.  We're now at an average 6% increase every year!

Household incomes in the country have stagnated in recent years, but cable, satellite and telco bills have not. The monthly rates for pay-TV have jumped an average of 6 percent per year, the firm finds.

"The increase sounds slight, but it's really not," Russ Crupnick, an entertainment industry analyst at The NPD Group, told TheWrap." Consumers are going to have to decide when they get that bill for $100 or $200 if cable can be one of their most valuable entertainment expenses going forward."

How high will the rates go?  The sky is the limit, tempered only by the simple laws of Supply and Demand.  But, if you extrapolate the 6% increases, you'll find that monthly cable bill in the $200 range sooner than you think.

TV lovers may need to take out a loan when the cable bill arrives -- in 2020.

By that time, the average monthly cost for pay-TV service in the United States is expected to balloon to $200, according to a new forecast by the research firm The NPD Group.


Average monthly pay-TV bill to hit $200 by 2020 - chicagotribune.com.