In an increasingly crowded streaming market, one more player is looking to throw its hat into the ring: new platform Quibi.
But what is Quibi, how can you get it and what does it have to offer? Here’s all the essential info.
What is Quibi?
Quibi was founded in 2018 by ex-Walt Disney Studios chairman Jeffrey Katzenberg, who produced some of Disney’s biggest animated hits including Beauty and the Beast (1991), Aladdin (1992), and The Lion King (1994) before overseeing franchises including Shrek and How to Train Your Dragon as co-founder and CEO of DreamWorks Animation.
The service is looking to differentiate itself from the likes of Netflix and Amazon Prime Video by producing content made to be streamed exclusively on mobile devices.
Individual episode chapters – known as “quick bites” – will last just 10 minutes or less, with the user able to view in either horizontal or vertical modes (with the ability to shift from one to the other during playback).
Quibi’s slogan is “Quick Bites, Big Stories”.
One show. One screen. Two perspectives.
Hold the phone horizontally = Cinematic perspective.
Hold the phone vertically = The character’s phone takes over your phone. #QuibiCES pic.twitter.com/mANwJJKsGU
— Quibi (@Quibi) January 8, 2020
How can I watch Quibi?
To watch Quibi programming, you’ll need to download the Quibi app, which again will only be available on mobile devices.
How much does Quibi cost?
In the US, there will be two different payment plans for Quibi – a $4.99 a month tier with ads or an ad-free service for $7.99 a month.
Quibi is also offering a 90-day free trial on its website if you sign up before 6th April.
When does Quibi launch?
Quibi will launch in the US on 6th April, 2020. A UK launch date is yet to be announced – see below for more details.
Quibi shows: What can I watch at launch?
50 original shows will be streaming on Quibi at launch, including scripted shows, reality series and documentaries and news and lifestyle pieces (or what the service calls “daily essentials”).
Though seasons of scripted shows will not drop in full, Quibi will drop new episodes daily – seasons will be divided into 12-14 episodes, with episodes of around 10 minutes each leading to a total runtime of between 120 to 150 minutes.
In its five year, Quibi plans to debut 175 new shows according to the New York Times, with 35 of these being scripted.
The four scripted shows premiering on 6th April will be:
In her first series role since Game of Thrones, Sophie Turner will lead this thriller based on the novel by Alex Morel which follows her character Jane and Paul (Corey Hawkins) as they fight to survive in the wilderness following a devastating plane crash.
Most Dangerous Game
Liam Hemsworth plays the terminally ill Dodge Maynard, who accepts an offer to participate in a deadly game in order to provide for his pregnant life… only to discover that he’s not the hunter, he’s the prey. Christoph Waltz also stars in this action thriller.
When the Streetlights Go On
Set in the 1990s and following the aftermath of a young girl’s murder in a suburban community, this crime thriller / coming-of-age drama will star Queen Latifah, Chosen Jacobs, Sophie Thatcher and Tony Hale.
In this comedy series, Will Forte and Kaitlin Olson play two home renovation “experts” hungry for TV stardom who are kidnapped by a drug cartel (one of whom is played by Eva Longoria) and forced to renovate their homes.
Unscripted shows available at launch will include NightGowns with Sasha Velour (featuring the Ru Paul’s Drag Race winner), comedic court show Chrissy’s Court (think Judge Judy but with TV personality and model Chrissy Teigen) and revivals of prank show Punk’d (with Chance the Rapper as host) and dating series Singled Out.
Scripted series coming to Quibi at a later date include a new version of The Fugitive (starring Kiefer Sutherland as a detective and Boyd Holbrook as the man he’s pursuing), sci-fi drama Code 8 starring Stephen Amell and Robbie Amell, After Dark (a horror series written and created by Steven Spielberg), shows based on the movies Varsity Blues and How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days and a revival of the cult cop comedy Reno 911!.
There’s also a large slate of docu-series in the works, including a project produced by Justin Timberlake and the intriguingly-titled Killing Zac Efron, which will see the Hollywood star head “deep into the jungles of a remote, dangerous island to carve his own name in expedition history.”
Is Quibi available in the UK?
Though its US launch is imminent, Quibi is yet to announce a launch date for the UK and Europe – or any costings.
The platform does have investment from the UK, though, including from BBC Studios and ITV, and has green-lit shows out of the UK including the unscripted reality show Elba vs Block featuring Idris Elba and professional rally driver Ken Block.
Fingers crossed that more news is forthcoming on when UK residents can expect to start streaming Quibi.