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Short form video streaming service Quibi is shutting down, according to reports from The Wall Street Journal and The Information. Employees and investors were notified about the impending shutdown over phone calls that went out this afternoon.

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Quibi, which launched in April, is similar to Netflix or Hulu but it provides video content in shorter 5 to 10 minute snippets for $4.99+ per month. Quibi envisioned its short form video being watched on smartphones, with the company pouring more than $1 billion into original content.

Following its launch, Quibi saw a slow start, which Quibi founder Jeffrey Katzenberg attributed to the pandemic. Katzenberg called Quibi's launch "not close to what we wanted," and the service ended up with an estimated 400,000 to 500,000 subscribers.

Quibi believed that it would garner approximately 7.4 million subscribers during its first year after launching, and it has so far come nowhere close to meeting that target.

Katzenberg approached several tech executives to see if Quibi might be able to be sold off, but no companies were interested. Katzenberg spoke with Facebook, Warner Media, and even Apple's software and services chief Eddy Cue, all of whom declined a purchase.

Companies were not interested in Quibi because of its unappealing licensing deals. Quibi's content is exclusive to Quibi for just two years, with creators then able to license it to other services, and after seven years, creators get back show ownership. Quibi is also facing a lawsuit from interactive video company Eko, with Eko claiming Quibi stole its horizontal/vertical video content technology.

Quibi also attempted to expand outside of its smartphone-only streaming format, offering apps on other platforms such as the Apple TV. An Apple TV app for Quibi launched yesterday, but the platform expansion has come too late to save the service.

Quibi had backers that included most major Hollywood studios, Alibaba, and Google, and The Information says it will shut down with $850 million in cash and several hundred million in debt. It is not clear how much money will be returned to shareholders, and investors in the company stand to lose money.

Article Link: Short Form Video Service Quibi Shutting Down
 

treyjustice

macrumors 65816
Jun 14, 2009
1,214
92
TX
I knew this was a failure when I first heard about it. I got a free sub from tmobile tuesdays. I did watch the short series WIRELESS. It was actually very creative in how you could turn your phone sideways or vertical and the content of the show would be different.
 
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nwcs

macrumors 68020
Sep 21, 2009
2,036
2,801
Tennessee
It will probably be bought by another short form video company to grow their audience and content.
 
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GizmoDVD

macrumors 68020
Oct 11, 2008
2,020
2,113
SoCal
Eh. I feel like ViacomCBS is going to put the new season on CBS All Access/Paramount+/whatever it's called now ASAP.

We don't know what the contract is if the service shuts down. It was 2 years after, the "owners" could sell the "shows" elsewhere.

As it stands, the season of Reno is maybe an hour / hour and half? They could stitch together 3-5 episodes
 
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itsmilo

Suspended
Sep 15, 2016
3,985
8,717
Berlin, Germany
Not gonna lie. When they renewed some of their shows a few months ago I was having a laugh. I feel bad for those employees though

It was actually very creative in how you could turn your phone sideways or vertical and the content of the show would be different.

Tried it on three of their shows but failed to see the creativity of this like yes ... writing like the episode title was centered both ways but when you decided to watch something in portrait mode, it focused on one person and it cut out a lot. As a creative person, I would have been offended. Also I failed to see the difference of doing that on any video in any app and just zooming 🤷🏽‍♂️ You loose content no matter what
 
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Baumi

macrumors regular
Mar 31, 2005
233
309
Following its launch, Quibi saw a slow start, which Quibi founder Jeffrey Katzenberg attributed to the pandemic.

That's one of the flimsiest excuses I have ever heard: "Our entertainment streaming service got off to a slow start because it launched at a time when movie theatres and other public entertainment venues were mostly closed and people stayed at home and went online much more than usual."

From my understanding, Disney+ got a boost from its launch in the middle of the Covid lockdowns, and it was one of the few bright spots in Disney's results. Quibi failed because it didn't offer enough interesting content.
 
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WBRacing

macrumors 65816
Nov 19, 2012
1,372
3,127
UK
I can’t believe they had so many backers in the first place.

I mean, who were the investing execs who sat in the meetings and went “yes!” to extended advert length shows with rubbish licensing deals. The mere concept as I’ve just typed it sounds laughably bad. If I was their bosses, I’d be asking questions...
 
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