Omdia has revised historical online video subscription data (subscription, revenues and views) based on latest industry feedback.

Omdia has revised historical online video subscription data (subscription, revenues and views) based on latest industry feedback.

  • The total online video subscriptions and consumer revenues have been lowered as a result of the revision of Oksusu historical subscription numbers. Oksusu had close to 10 million subscriptions before merger with POOQ (September 2019), but most of them were telco sponsored subscriptions, non-paying users who were able to watch major live TV channels on Oksusu video platform. Previously, we have classified a larger share of them as paying subscriptions rather than users.
  • Total online video subscriptions between 2016 to 2019 have been revised down around 30%, while total subscription revenue is revised down further to reflect the change.

South Korea online video market has gone through a series of changes since Netflix entered the market in early 2016. Total standalone subscriptions almost doubled in 2019, from 3.8 million in 2018 to 6.5 million in 2019. With Netflix leading the market, local players are beefing up their strategies to compete through partnerships and launching new services.

  • SK Telecom and three local broadcasters, SBS, MBC and KBS integrated Oksusu and POOQ to form a new entity, Content Wavve with a new OTT service, Wavve in September 2019.
  • TVING and JTBC signed an agreement in September 2019 to launch joint venture and integrated OTT platform based on TVING in 2020.
  • Korea Telecom rebranded Olleh TV Mobile as Seezn and relaunched in November 2019.

Omdia forecasts that South Korea online video market will reach USD 600 million by the end of 2020, with 8.6 million standalone paying subscribers. The online video market in South Korea remains dynamic, with TVING and JTBC to launch new OTT service and potential Disney+ launch. Smaller players that are unable to compete will exit the market. The latest victim was Lotte Cinema VOD (previously known as SeeChu), which was operated by production company Lotte Cultureworks. Its online video service ended in less than two years after debut in July 2018.