Just a little more than 6 months after it launched with a raft of short shows starring A-list talent, Quibi is shutting down.
Just hours after reports broke that the troubled streaming service had hired a restructuring firm, the Wall Street Journal reported the service would go dark. The news reportedly comes from investors who were on a call with founder Jeffrey Katzenberg about the future of the streamer
Quibi had problems from the outset, once it moved beyond the first step of raising a ton of money in venture capital. The doomed app pulled in $1.75 billion in investments pre-launch. That was enough to pique the interests of advertisers, who threw in over $150 million in ad buys. But the average viewer doesn't read the trades and Quibi's 10-minute television concept never caught on. The strangeness of the "quick bites" model also clashed with the COVID-19 crisis. There didn't seem to be much place for short shows meant to be watched on the go when everyone was stuck inside binging television as cities shut down.
While the company should be lauded for its efforts to increase representation on screen, the concept was perhaps too ill-conceived to survive. Twitter users (and Quibi's own talent) rushed to get off their final Quibi jokes in the wake of the news.