International Korean entertainment fans might be familiar with the struggle of having to wait days for a kind-hearted Korean speaker to translate their favorite idols’ song or their favorite K-dramas. South Korea’s major television networks KBS, MBC and SBS are teaming up to make the experience a little less cumbersome with a new streaming platform called Kocowa.
Kocowa CEO Junshik Kim told Deadline he is confident in the streaming platform’s ability to perform in the United States due to the popularity of K-wave stars such as PSY and BTS. According to Kocowa’s estimates, there are as many as 8 million fans of Korean entertainment in the U.S. who are eager to learn about more Korean TV shows and music.
Korean entertainment and Korean pop culture is becoming increasingly popular in the U.S., with many depending on streaming sites such as DramaFever and Viki to watch subtitled content and keep up with their favorite stars and shows. This is the first such attempt by major Korean TV networks to try to reach out to those audiences with their own streaming site.
Fans will be able to watch their favorite Korean programs ad-free shortly after they premiere in South Korea for 99 cents a day, $6.99 a month or $69.99 for a year. Some content will also be free for viewing with ads 24 hours after their South Korean premiere. Kocowa will also provide high quality subtitles for their programs, so non-Korean fans won’t feel left out of the action.
The streaming platform would include programs from all three major networks, including comedic reality shows “2 Days and 1 Night” and “Running Man,” as well as dramas like “The King in Love.” Kocowa subscribers will also be able to watch exclusive content such as footage from G-Dragon’s latest North American solo concert tour.
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