Quibi, the yet-to-be launched, short-form video platform, pretty much fits this profile. The younger-skewing app wants to offer bite-size TV and premium video content, which will largely -- if not entirely -- be seen on mobile devices.
Quibi believes that entertainment content in six- ,10-, or perhaps 12- minute pieces — will work for the modern consumer who is standing in line at a bank, retail store or doctor’s office, or in a parked car.
Is this possible? Sure. Some would say you can do that now with video content.
The premise, according to Jeffrey Katzenberg, founder-chairman of Quibi, is that we already view a lot of content in small bites. TV shows are segmented in six- to 10-minute blocks to account for TV commercials. Why not just offer entire episodes of TV shows lasting that long?
The biggest selling point is this: Mobile content and usage continues to soar, and Quibi can encourage producers to buy in. Former Katzenberg Dreamworks partner, and famed film director Steven Spielberg, has recently been signed for a horror-theme late-night series on Quibi.
Quibi has some time to figure this out.
It will launch on April 6, 2020 with two tiers. One will be limited ad support, costing $4.99 per month, and include one pre-roll ad before each video segment -- 10 seconds in duration if the video is less than five minutes, and 15 seconds long if the video runs five to 10 minutes. The service will also offer an ad-free option at $7.99 per month.
More short-form video? This isn’t exactly new. Hundreds (thousands?) of original digital media series currently do the same -- running six- to-10-minute episodes on YouTube. But many of those series are not based purely (or mostly) on the mobile platform.
Can Quibi gain enough of this niche to command market share and scale? Like Netflix, it will need many different kinds of content to tease video consumers.
Harder still, what will the marketing message be? “Your average TV show wastes your time.” “What if you could see an episode like ‘This is Us’ in six minutes, beginning to end? You’d thank us.’”