The newest video streaming service, Quibi, has already clocked 1.7 million downloads in the first week since launch. This mobile-only streaming app is available for Android phones as well as the Apple iPhone, and currently offers users a 90-day free trial. After the free trial is over, the subscription costs Rs 650 per month for the Ad-Free tier. In India, there is only one subscription tier available, whereas in other countries, Quibi charges $4.99 per month for an ad-supported subscription plan or $7.99 for ad-free viewing. But ever since Quibi launched a mobile-only streaming platform in the middle of the lockdown because of COVID pandemic, one limitation has consistently come to the fore—there is no way to play the Quibi content on a larger screen, that is the TV in your home. That could be changing soon too.
Quibi CEO Meg Whitman has confirmed that the ability to stream the content to TVs is coming soon, and that the company always had this in plan. She told the CNBC that the company is fact-tracking plans to add the option of casting the content to TVs. Quibi, which is inspired by quick-bites, focuses on short format videos that the company says would perfectly fit the in-between time that users may have—such as between meetings or while having coffee. However, it is not clear if it will just be the casting support for TVs, or Quibi intends to also launch separate apps for platforms such as Google's Android TV, Apple TV and Amazon's Fire TV Stick platform.
At present, some of the popular shows on Quibi include Elba vs Block which sees actor Idris Elba and professional rally driver Ken Block go behind the wheel to see who is the better driver, The Stranger which is about a rideshare potentially evolving into stalking and the Most Dangerous Game which sees a man (played by Liam Hemsworth) in a dystopian thriller playing a game to pay off his debt. Most episodes are in the range of 6 minutes to 9 minutes.
Quibi jumped into the video streaming space that now includes Disney+ (Disney+ Hotstar in India), Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Apple TV+, to name a few. Disney+ clocked 10 million downloads in the first week, and that’s a tough act to follow. The Quibi CEO Whitman has confirmed that the platform has sold the advertising slate for the first year, which alleviates any anxiety about the financial side of things as the world tries to recover from the Coronavirus pandemic and the lockdown.