|Foundation date||June 2006|
|Headquarters||San Francisco, California, USA|
|Industry||Anime industry, Anime, Asian Drama and Video on Demand|
|Owner||The Chernin Group
|Slogan(s)||The Official Source for Anime & Drama|
|Alexa rank||3,330 (March 2014[update])|
|Type of site||Video streaming service|
Crunchyroll is an American website and international online community focused on streaming East Asian media including anime, manga, drama, music, electronic entertainment, and auto racing content. Founded in 2006 by a group of UC Berkeley graduates, Crunchyroll's distribution channel and partnership program delivers content to over five million online community members worldwide. Crunchyroll is funded by The Chernin Group and TV Tokyo.
Crunchyroll started in 2006 as a for-profit video upload and streaming site that specialized in hosting East Asian video content. Some of the content hosted on Crunchyroll, such as fan-subbed versions of East Asian shows or bootlegs of official US releases of anime titles, was illegally hosted without permission from any rightsholders or the fansub team responsible. However, Crunchyroll eventually removed copyrighted content when requested by the rightsholder.
In 2008, Crunchyroll secured a capital investment of $4.05 million from the venture capital firm Venrock. The investment drew criticism from anime distributors and licensors Bandai Entertainment and Funimation as the site continued to allow users to upload illegal copies of licensed titles.
However, Crunchyroll eventually began securing legal distribution agreements with companies, including Gonzo, for an increasing number of titles. On January 8, 2009, after announcing a deal with TV Tokyo to host episodes of Naruto Shippuden, Crunchyroll stated that it was committed to removing all copyright infringing material from its site and to hosting only content to which it had legitimate distribution rights.
As of summer 2011, Crunchyroll offers over 200 anime shows and more than 200 Asian dramas to users, although not all programming is available worldwide due to licensing restrictions.
On December 2, 2013, The Chernin Group announced that they have acquired a controlling interest in Crunchyroll. A person with knowledge of the transaction said the price for the acquisition was close to $100 million. The Chernin Group said that Crunchyroll management and existing investor TV Tokyo will maintain a "significant" stake in the company.
Free access to Crunchyroll is available on desktop browsers, and devices with Windows Phone, iOS and Android that are connected to a Wi-Fi source. However, not all content is offered for free. Some content requires a paid subscription service of $6.95/month, while other content becomes free after a delay, usually a week after availability for the paid members. Some titles are subscription only, based on licensing agreements. Some titles are only available in certain regions of the world, some titles available in the United States may not be available in other countries.
With paid memberships, streaming to select Windows Phone devices (with OS 7.5 or higher), Roku devices, Boxee, PlayStation 3,PlayStation 4, and Xbox 360 consoles, and Vizio, Google and Samsung Internet enabled televisions is available. In June 2013 the service became available through Apple TV.
- Anime on Demand, a website streaming anime in both Ireland and the United Kingdom.
- Niconico, a website streaming anime in Japan.
- List of US anime simulcasts
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