Crackle Suspending U.K. Site at the End of the Month
While things seem to be going well for the Sony-owned ad-supported video site Crackle in the U.S. (the site just announced that season three of its popular series "Chosen" will begin on April 15), the site is apparently lagging in the U.K. Starting yesterday, visitors to the Crackle U.K. site found this note on the homepage: “We’d like to thank all those who have supported and enjoyed Crackle UK. As of April 1, 2014 Crackle’s UK service will no longer be operating.”
Crackle hasn't issued any statement about the closing and (so far) hasn't answered a request for comment. With no news to go on, insiders can only speculate that the U.K. streaming market is increasingly competitive, and that Sony wasn't driving enough ad revenue from the site to justify the licensing costs for premium content. Although with Crackle showing movies from the Sony Pictures library, licensing costs may not have been an issue.
With closure immanent, U.K. viewers have less than a week to finish off "Chosen" or Jerry Seinfeld's popular online original series "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee." In September, Crackle released its first online original feature-length movie, Extraction.
Sony debuted the U.K. version of Crackle in June, 2010, along with local versions for Australia, Canada, and Latin America.