Quibi Is Kaput, Shutting Down Just Months After Its Splashy Launch
Oct 24 2020
Streaming service Quibi is reportedly shutting down after launching earlier this year as a new mobile-only platform.
Quibi's founder, former DreamWorks SKG head Jeffrey Katzenberg, along with Quibi CEO and former eBay chief Meg Whitman, wrote in a statement directed toward investors, partners and employees that while the service was a great idea that introduced the "next generation of storytelling" to the world, they, "with an incredibly heavy heart", have made a decision to wind down the business. "The world has changed dramatically since Quibi launched and our standalone business model is no longer viable".
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Quibi co-founder Jeffrey Katzenberg said earlier this year that the people using his product might be "in between home-schooling or doing chores around the house, or answering emails and being on video chats".
Quibi has more than 100 original series spanning a range of genres with episodes specifically designed for viewing on smartphones, and lasting no more than 10 minutes each, according to the startup.
Recent reports suggested that Katzenberg, in an attempt to recover some of the massive amount of money which went into content and tech production, had been shopping some of Quibi's content to the likes of NBCUniversal and Facebook.
This image released by Quibi shows Tye Sheridan in a scene from "Wireless" which follows a college student navigating the snowy Colorado mountains.
"We have assembled a world-class creative and engineering team that has created an original platform fueled by groundbreaking technology and IP, enabling consumers to view premium content in a whole new way", Katzenberg said. Episodes specifically designed for mobile viewing that automatically adjusted to however you were now holding your phone?
"Quibi was a big idea and there was no one who wanted to make a success of it more than we did", Katzenberg and Quibi chief executive Meg Whitman said in a letter to its employees posted on Medium.
It barely kicked up any dust in Australia, but in the USA the hype train was steaming: stars such as Steven Spielberg, Jennifer Lopez, Reese Witherspoon and Lebron James signed on to contribute to making "Quibis".
The service did boast some unique content from big names in entertainment, but ultimately, that wasn't enough to save Quibi from drowning in a sea of streaming services that offer more content on more devices.
Unfortunately, Quibi arrived at probably the worst time.