If you’ve been online recently — which you definitely have — you’ve heard of Quibi, the new streaming app that’s caught eyes and ears with its “just a Quibi” marketing.
You know, the “how long will this take?” question followed by the answer, “just a Quibi,” and usually starring a celebrity.
While the ads have taken over the media, they don’t quite explain what Quibi is, or what sets it apart from other streaming options.
Quibi is a media platform similar to Netflix, Hulu, Disney+ and many more — only, it’s not. It’s been claimed not as a “Netflix alternative,” but something else entirely.
The name is a mix of “quick” and “bites” because Quibi-produced episodes are seven to 10 minutes long. At five dollars a month with commercials and seven dollars a month without, the app is only available on phones and tablet devices because of its unique flip-screen feature, meaning you can shift the screen horizontal or vertical to see different shots of their content.
The app is the brainchild of Jeffrey Katzenberg, the previous chair of Disney and co-founder of Dreamworks. Alongside Meg Whitman, they launched Quibi on April 6, targeting millennials in on-the-go situations.
This in part is why Quibi episodes are so short — the company believes the best place to view their content is during workouts, transportation, waiting in lines and other activities to pass time.
Quibi also hopes to attract more up-and-coming filmmakers and producers. The company isn’t interested in exclusive titles like “Friends,” “The Office” or any Disney movie. All of their shows and content debut on the app, and creators range from celebrities to independent filmmakers.
The streaming platform’s goal is to upload content not monthly, not weekly, but daily. It’s a gamble, but many big names have gotten behind the app.
Quibi has attacked all types of viewing platforms with its star-powered advertisements. Here are a few examples:
“Mr. The Rapper” – Chance The Rapper
“Sophie Turner’s Stumped” – Sophie Turner
“Chrissy Teigen’s Cardio” – Chrissy Teigen
They even made a joke commercial about people’s confusion over what Quibi was.
If you look up anything related to Quibi, you can’t help but notice the vast number of celebrities associated with it. Chance The Rapper has his reboot of “Punk’d,” Turner has her “Survive” and Teigen’s got “Chrissy’s Court.”
And these are only the tip of the iceberg. Quibi spared no expense in ensuring that when they launched the app, people would notice.
Besides its star power and “New Episodes Every Day” campaign, Quibi is also offering the app free of subscription for 90 days.
Most streaming services offer their products free for a week, or even a month. But Quibi is hoping that this extended period of time will give people the opportunity to merge the app with their everyday schedules.
But almost everyone’s schedules have been altered by the coronavirus, and this has caused mixed circumstances for the company. Because no one is going anywhere, Quibi’s self-identified purpose as a pass time during waiting cannot happen.
On the other hand, streaming service use has spiked from quarantine, so downloading hasn’t been much affected by it.
And yet the app is tanking on iPhone charts, trailing behind Netflix, Hulu and other streaming platforms.
Overall, the future of Quibi is hazy, and whether or not its $1.75 billion funding will amount to only hype or generational change will be uncovered in the next few months.