Quibi Has Officially Shut Down
As announced earlier this fall, the Quibi app has become inoperable on Tuesday, December 1. This marks the official end of Jeffrey Katzenberg’s short-lived business endeavor. According to Variety, Quibi ended up costing around $1.75 billion.
So what happens now? Apparently the Quibi app will remain on users’ phones and devices until they decide to delete it. However, if a user tries to sign in, an error message will pop up. There is no way to access the content featured on the app.
Quibi launched on April 6, led by Katzenberg and CEO Meg Whitman. The streaming service contained a library of “quick bite” entertainment, served up in episodes of 10 minutes or less. Big name celebrities were attached to nearly every show, including Reese Witherspoon, Liam Hemsworth, Idris Elba, Will Arnett, Tyra Banks, and many, many more. Quibi was banking on these stars' draw to bring subscribers to the platform. It didn't work.
In October, less than 7 months after its debut, Quibi announced that the company would be shutting down. Although the company spent millions — up to $6 million per hour — on its content, they couldn't secure the number of users needed to keep the lights on. As it turns out, people aren't willing to shell out $4.99 a month ($7.99 without ads) to watch short-form entertainment when Netflix, HBO Max, Hulu, Disney+, and Amazon Prime are churning out high quality long-form entertainment on the regular.
While Katzenberg and Whitman believed that Quibi offered something unique in terms of “on-the-go” entertainment, they were still competing with Snapchat, Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok. Each one of these apps offers a wealth of short, entertaining clips ... for free. Quibi didn't stand a chance.
As Quibi winds down for good, the company will reportedly return $350 million to its investors as it tries to sell off its assets. Quibi’s Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook accounts have been wiped clean.
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