Quibi had 1.7 million downloads in its first week, doing slightly better than expected

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Quibi, the app that’s punting itself as “the next big thing” was expected to pull in around 1.5 million downloads. Clearly there’s more of a market for movies being cut up into 10-minute chunks than all those industry experts thought.

Last week we reported on the announcement and release a Quibi, an “exciting” new entertainment app that’s producing original movies series or re-imagining of classics that can be viewed in ten-minute chunks.

In an attempt to compete with the likes of TikTok and YouTube, two platforms that thrive off entertainment that distills itself into bite-sized chunks, Quibi wants to bring high production values and compelling stories into the same realm. Which is…a really stupid idea, if you ask us. Who’s actually going to pay $8 a month (almost R150) just to watch a movie that’s been edited into 10-minute slices without ads? Beyond that, who wants to do that exclusively on a phone because Quibi isn’t able to broadcast to a television?

As it turns out, 1.7 million people want that experience. Or at least, they were intrigued enough to download the app. Coming in just above expectations, Quibi was downloaded by just under 2 million people in a week but I doubt it’s jumping for joy just yet. See, Quibi offers all users a 90 day trial period so no-one’s actually paid for the app yet. It’s stuck in this weird limbo where people have downloaded it but it hasn’t actually generated any revenue yet.

So while 1.7 million downloads sounds impressive, the company isn’t really reaping the rewards from that figure just yet. Beyond that number, it’s worth noting that the competing streaming service Disney+ received 10 million downloads on its’ first day. At least Quibi was paying attention when everyone responded to the lack of TV viewing with a “Seriously?” as CEO Meg Whitman confirmed that a large screen experience is currently in development.

“We had always planned to be able to cast to your TV, so we’re going to see if we can accelerate that in the engineering roadmap,” Whitman said on CNBC, which was reported by The Verge. “We’ll eventually get there, but it was never a part of the launch. If we had known about COVID, maybe it would have been,” which seems like a strange excuse but play on, I guess.

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I completed a Masters Degree just so someone might take my opinions seriously one day. Also writes about video games over at Critical Hit.

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