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Twitch is shutting down in an entire country

The company is shutting down in Korea, citing network usage fees in the market.
By
December 6, 2023
Twitch on smartphone stock photo 14
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority
TL;DR
  • Twitch has announced that it’s shutting down in Korea.
  • The platform cited the high cost of running the service, owing to network usage fees.

Twitch is a global powerhouse as far as live streaming is concerned, with the Amazon-owned company being the go-to platform for gaming and other types of streams. Unfortunately, the company has announced that it’s shutting down in one key country.

Twitch confirmed in a blog post that it would be shutting down operations in Korea, citing the “prohibitively high” cost of running the service in the country.

“After several years of consideration and effort to find a way to continue operating in Korea, Twitch has decided to end its operations in Korea as of February 27, 2024, Korean time,” the company announced.

Twitch blames network usage fees

The company specifically pointed to the high network fees in the country. Korea introduced legislation that would force major content providers to pay to use networks in the country.

Twitch claimed that it implemented several measures to reduce costs, including capping video quality at 720p, but to no avail:

Although these efforts were able to reduce costs somewhat, the network fees in Korea were 10 times higher than in most other countries, making operations no longer feasible.

Korean viewers will no longer be able to make purchases on the platform after February 27, while streamers won’t be able to generate revenue after this date. The firm also said it was in discussions with alternative services about the possibility of transferring Twitch communities to them.

Twitch added that it would also be waiving its terms regarding simultaneous broadcasting so that affected creators can share links to their new streaming platforms and channels.

Twitch isn’t the first global service provider caught up in Korea’s network fee legislation. Netflix and Korea’s SK Broadband were engaged in a years-long legal battle over usage fees, with the two finally settling in September.