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Twitch says it's withdrawing from the South Korean market over expensive network fees

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ASSOCIATED PRESS

Twitch, a popular video service, will shut down its struggling business in South Korea, a decision its chief executive blamed on allegedly “prohibitively expensive” costs for operating in the country

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Twitch, a popular video service, will shut down its struggling business in South Korea, a decision its chief executive blamed on allegedly “prohibitively expensive” costs for operating in the country.

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In a blog post announcing the company’s plan this week, Dan Clancy said the network fees the company has been paying to South Korean internet operators were 10 times more than in most other markets. He did not provide specific numbers to back such claims.

“We’ve made the difficult decision to shut down the Twitch business in Korea on Feb. 27, 2024,” Clancy said in the post. Twitch was able to lower costs by limiting video quality, he said, but “our network fees in Korea are still 10 times more expensive than in most other countries."

A platform popular with video game fans, Twich downgraded the quality of its video services in South Korea to a resolution of 720 p from 1080 p in September 2022, citing a need to reduce costs. Later that year it blocked South Korean streamers from uploading video-on-demand content.