The new video service Quibi, with which short episodes of series could be viewed on smartphones, will stop after more than six months. Founders Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman announced this in a blog post.
Quibi never really got off the ground in the past six months. The app offered subscribers series of up to ten minutes per episode, which could be viewed in both horizontal and vertical positions on phones. However, the number of intended subscribers lagged behind.
Katzenberg (formerly co-founder of DreamWorks Animation) and Whitman (formerly CEO of eBay) partly blame two things for the lack of success. “Either the idea wasn’t strong enough for a separate streaming service or our timing wasn’t right.”
Quibi subscribers will be notified of the closure of the app. An end date has not yet been announced, although the app will stop sometime “in the coming months.”
Big names were involved in Quibi. For example, the service offered its own series with actors such as Christoph Waltz and Liam Hemsworth. Quibi says it wants to sell the series to other streaming services or TV channels. The technology behind the app is also sold.
Quibi made its service available to televisions earlier this week. Initially, Quibi was an app that only worked on phones, so people could watch series on the go. The timing of the shift turned out to be unfavorable, largely because people stayed home more because of the COVID-19 outbreak.