Thought we wouldn’t be writing any more posts here about Quibi until they enabled a promised cast to TV option. To my knowledge, they still haven’t done that, but here we return again to the black sheep of the streaming family.
Their new plans, if true, might be more egregious than launching without a necessary basic streaming function.
Quibi launched April 6 as COVID-19 was sweeping across the U.S. and much of the world. It was aiming to bring high-end, Netflix-like programming to mobile phones as people were stuck in shelter at home mode. The Journal said Quibi is also considering raising additional cash or merging with a special purpose acquisition company, or SPAC, a popular financial vehicle of late.Quibi Exploring Options, Including Potential Sale – Report – Deadline
The tech bubble burst on company after company essentially using this same playbook. Launching onto the scene with some minor “new” feature/service/site in tech, only to gain a lot of attention, then selling on that attention, finding the startup owner(s) moving onto other startups to commit the same offense again. The new owners of the purchased site/service would often later either bury the tech or resell it at a loss — sometimes a large one — years later.
The goal, therefore, from the original owners didn’t appear to be running a successful business (a lot of times the original service was “FREE” with zero idea of how it would actually make any money), it was to raise enough buzz and attention to sell to the highest bidder.
Is this all Quibi was about for Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman? A binge and purge tech exit plan in the streaming space? Or are they legitimately licking wounds of a specialty mobile streaming service few wanted to subscribe to (see: Less than 10% of Quibi FREE 90 day trials converted to paid subscribers)?
(We’ve suggested here in the past that AppleTV+ could be a viable suitor for buying Quibi to strip the creative content for its relatively empty cupboards service and dump the unnecessary tech)
What do you think is going on here? Do you even care? Is this the streaming space equivalent of slowing down to see an accident scene?