A few weeks before Kwese went belly up something happened in the media world that I somehow missed: DramaFever one of my favourite destinations for Korean drama series and movies was shut down. If you visit their site you will see a message saying they have shut their doors forever.
As of October 16, DramaFever has been shut down.
For nine years, DramaFever offered a place for streaming the best Korean, Chinese and Japanese dramas on-demand, straight to your device. We appreciate the passion of our fans and it’s been a privilege to deliver you this content.
While this decision is difficult, there are a variety of business reasons that have led to this conclusion. We appreciate each and every one of our fans and their passion for the content DramaFever was able to bring into your lives.
We’d like to take this time to extend our thanks and gratitude to you, our loyal subscribers. We’ll be issuing refunds as applicable, and subscribers will receive an email from us with details in the coming days.
The DramaFever Team
I have a thing for binge watching
I like binge watching series instead of watching one episode each weak and waiting for the next weekly episode to come back, so I normally wait until the series is complete before starting. One of the series on my watch list completed airing this past weekend and when I opened the app I got a server error. Upon visiting the site I was greeted by the above message.
Who were DramaFever
I wrote about DramaFever sometime back when I was reviewing SmartDNS proxy. It was a streaming service that carried mainly Asian content and was aimed at American born Asians although they at one point revealed that in actual fact most of their customers where not even Asian. For me and the rest of my family it was a completely legal way to watch Korean dramas.
The service was bought by WarnerBros in 2016 from Softbank. Through the site they had streaming rights to series and movies broadcast by the three major Korean TV networks: Seoul Broadcasting System, Korean Broadcasting System, and Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation.Just like what Econet did with Kwese, the service was shutdown without prior notice for “business reasons”.
Fear not there are alternatives
Before you break down in despair and head for those sketchy download sites where you have to click a gazillion buttons before you see the download link know that there are alternatives. There is OndemandKorea.com and Viki.com. The last one was my go to alternative anyway and I was introduced to On Demand Korea by my DNS unblocker service.
Both services have a free and premium tier. Viki.com gives you a one year pass that allows you to stream the shows in HD and Ad free for a whole year which translates to just $2.50 a month or you can pay $4.50 for the monthly plan instead. If you don’t mind the ads you can watch fore free. There is no need for a DNS unblocker here if you are in Zimbabwe but there might be library differences with US audiences.
On Demand Korea costs $7 a month for the paid version and here you will need a DNS Unblocker. You can use either SmartDNS or SmartyDNS. The former is much cheaper with a $25/two years option. Personally I enjoy Viki more but and have opted for a monthly pass.
Enjoy your Korean dramas.