Quibi may be no more, but their impressive slate of original programming could soon find a new home at Roku.
Update (1/4/21): According to Variety, Quibi and Roku may be nearing the deal which could find Roku acquiring the streaming rights to the short-lived mobile streaming platforms’ original series.
Though Quibi never quite took off the way CEOs Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman envisioned, one aspect of the mobile streaming platform that certainly piqued the interest of many was Quibi’s pricey lineup of original content.
The bite-sized content housed on the streamer wasn’t lacking in star-power either. In fact, for a while, it seemed as though every Hollywood A-lister was striking a deal for a Quibi show.
With that in mind, it’s no surprise that another outlet might be interested in picking up the rights to some of that content.
Neither Quibi nor Roku have officially commented on the deal in question, but we’ll certainly be keeping an eye out for news on the matter.
Original Story (10/21/2020):
Quibi is gearing up to pull the plug on itself.
According to The Verge, the newly minted streaming service— whose gimmick was short form content made to be streamed on mobile devices— is officially gearing up to shut down.
News of Quibi’s demise comes as a bit of a shock, firstly because it’s only been about six months since the streaming service launched. Co-founded by Disney Animations/Dreamworks Animations vet Jeffrey Katzenberg, and former eBay CEO Meg Whitman, famously tased nearly $2 billion in seed money before officially launching on April 6, 2020.
In addition to hoping that their short form mobile content might set them apart from the pack, Quibi also pumped tons of money into original programming which featured some major star power from Hollywood heavy hitters. Celebs with series deals via the streamer included the likes of Chance the Rapper, Andy Cohen, James Corden, Will Smith, Joe Jonas, Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson, Anna Kendrick, Kendall and Kylie Jenner, Tyra Banks, Tom Cruise, Guillermo del Toro, and Zac Efron.
But despite the impressive haul of celebrities they tapped to spearhead original programming, Quibi was never quite able to find its footing.
Per The Wall Street Journal, who was the first to report the news, Quibi has had issues from the start. Both viewership and app download numbers were lower than projected to start with. Additionally, despite investing in original content featuring notable names, the streamer was never able to secure a breakout hit.
Though Quibi’s short form, mobile friendly content set them apart from traditional streamers like Hulu and Netflix, it wasn’t enough to set the streamer apart from platforms such as TikTok and YouTube— both of which offer similar advantages, and have the added advantage of being free. A subscription for Quibi set those who signed up back $4.99 a month or $7.99, depending on whether one was opting for an ad-free or ad-supported subscription.
Interestingly, news of Quibi shutting down comes just 24 hours after the streamer launched apps for Apple TV, Android TV, and Fire TV.