Quibi: The Short Form Streaming Service

Quibi, or “Quick Bites” streaming service, is the new platform that gives you episodes in short form. Each episode is up to ten minutes. The main audience for this are millennials and generation Z who only have time to watch short length episodes. 

The CEO for Quibi is Jeffrey Katzenberg. He used to be the chairman of Disney studios from 1984 to 1994. This has an investment by Disney as well. Katzenberg said on his TMZ interview that his “phone only” service comes from the fact that movies which are two-hours are seen on the big screen. Television shows which are at most 40 minutes are seen on the small screen. Now that phones are viable enough to watch shows, they’re meant for small form shows.

I wasn’t a fan of how the app looks. It has a carousel-like interface to it. Taking up the whole screen makes it hard to see what else there is to watch. The show icons should be smaller since there is a good amount of shows to watch. I felt like I didn’t even get a good grasp of what shows that were offered.

Shows

Katzenberg said they launched with fifty shows and five-hundred episodes. That’s plenty of content that appeals to just about everyone. What intrigues me about the service is they do have a lot of stars in their shows. It’s hard to navigate through the app and find what show you want. I watched a couple of shows stuck with shows that have actors that I’m familiar with such as Flipped starring Will Forte and Kaitlyn Olson. The Lebron James documentary about him opening up his school last summer had good production quality.

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This idea is pretty innovative but its target audience isn’t big enough. What doesn’t help is that everyone is on lockdown during the COVID-19 crisis and people need long-form media to take up their time. This is more ideal for commuting or between meetings. They should have pushed back the launch for the service and launched when people are back to work. This could create a barrier of being able to share with your friends or family. People aren’t going to gather around a phone for ten minutes. I didn’t see a share button to share shows in case someone you know also has the service. People like to talk about what they are watching on TV and it’s a nice “water cooler” conversation starter that everyone can relate to. 

YouTube, TikTok and to some degree, Snapchat are all popular because of the short from media. You don’t have to pay money for these services and since Katenzenberg is from old Hollywood, he is trying to capitalize on this short attention span that younger generations have an affliction for. There is a market for this but they don’t have that one special show that compels everyone to subscribe to the service and 10 minutes isn’t long enough to take service seriously to pay for.

Will you check out Quibi? Leave a comment saying so.

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Daniel Heredia
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