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Quibi joins the streaming wars as its the latest player

Courtesy of Quibi

The streaming platform competition gained a new player with the arrive of Quibi an American short-from video platform. The anticipated app that is designated for mobile entertainment has finally arrived. The main objective of Quibi is to deliver both scripted and unscripted content that is no longer than 10 minutes.

Since being advertised, many speculated what “Quibi’s purpose” might be. Quibi is a streaming-based platform designed to create short-form content for viewers to enjoy on their mobile devices.

Being that the platform is designated as “entertainment on the go,” the name for the application is appropriate. Quibi derives its name from the mash up of words “quick” and “bites.”

Quibi was developed by Jeffrey Katzenberg, one the masterminds behind DreamWorks Animation, serving as its co-founder and chief executive officer from 2004 to 2017. Meg Whitman, with past experience as the CEO of Ebay from 1998 to 2008 and the CEO of Hewlett-Packard from 2011 to 2015, is Quibi’s current CEO.

With only two weeks into Quibi’s debut, some of its shows have received notable buzz. Shows like I Promise give viewers a glimpse into the highs and lows of basketball legend LeBron James’ I PROMISE School, which he created to gear today’s youth towards better opportunities by providing them a better-quality education. Another show given a thumbs up would include the action-thriller Most Dangerous Game, a reboot of the 1924 short story about the top 1% of people hunting their own kind for sport. Liam Hemsworth stars in this Quibi thriller alongside Christoph Waltz.

Quibi’s format may be reminiscent to the viewing style on YouTube or Snapchat, but in an interview with Vulture, Katzenberg cites that the “ability to watch content that is as beautiful whether you’re watching it in landscape or in portrait [modes]” is a special and unique feature.

The app’s founder also stated that, “Nobody’s been able to do that yet, and this group of engineers and designers has actually done this in a pretty seamless way.”

While the short-form platform is drawing A-list celebrity power form the likes of Teigen and her new court show Chrissy’s Court or X-Men actress Sophie Turner with her aerial thriller Survive, there is opposition on the horizon. Benjamin Lee, a writer for The Guardian, states that the timing for the app is not such a great idea given the current COVID-19 pandemic is preventing most people from being on-the-go and having only small chunks of time to enjoy any media.

“The problem with Quibi faces is that, for most of us, those gaps have been erased by the pandemic and instead we desire longer-form content to dominate the many, many hours we’re spending at home,” wrote Lee.

Other publications joining the “Quibi is a bad idea” club is The Atlantic, with Spencer Kornhaber citing that the  “short-form entertainment app slices and dices the traditional mediocrity that the internet has allowed viewers to escape from.” Kornhaber states that a side “hazard” from watching Quibi content is the constant need to check one’s phone.

With nearly $2 billion invested in Quibi during its first year, it seems that the streaming platform may be lasting for more than just 10 minutes in terms of popularity, but not without criticism.

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Jahlil Rush, Production Assistant
Jahlil Rush is a Production Assistant to The Ticker.

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