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When Quibi launched earlier this year, it looked pretty cool. Custom designed rings for mobile viewing that automatically adjust anyway You currently carry your phone? Sure, let’s try it! Unfortunately, Quibi didn’t really take off. Now, the only episode left is an epilogue to the video streaming platform itself – The Wall Street Journal says Quibi has decided to shut down.
Earlier in the day, Quibi founder Geoffrey Katzenberg informed investors that it was shutting down the service. It’s a disappointing end to the service that promised to revolutionize the way we consume content. Analysts believe that the epidemiological situation kept many potential Quibi members stuck at home rather than hopping on the go, making the mobile-optimized video less attractive. When people want to watch something at home, they generally prefer to use the largest possible screen.
When it launched, Quibi didn’t work on smart TVs or even support Chromecasting content for them. Heck, it still doesn’t have a web client. The company finally introduced apps for Android TV, Apple TV, and Fire TV yesterday, but it was a little too late to do anything good. While Katzenberg was said to have tried to sell Quibi to someone else, several potential suitors were put off because Quibi did not own most of the shows that he aired.
The service boasted some unique content from the big names in entertainment, but in the end, that wasn’t enough to save Quibi from drowning in a sea of streaming services offering more content on more devices. It is unclear when Quibi will be offline and what will happen to its content, but an official announcement of the shutdown will likely appear soon with these details.
Quibi founder and CEO, Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman, made the news official. In an explicit post on Medium, they explained that they had failed despite their best efforts to ensure the service was successful. A launch in the middle of the pandemic could have played a negative role, but they do not rule out the possibility that Quibi as a whole might not have been “strong enough to warrant an independent broadcast service.” Regardless of the reason, the end result is the same, and they’ll be winding down and looking for buyers within the next month who will be interested in Quibi’s content and technology assets.
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