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Quibi launches as a short-form alternative to Netflix and the other streaming giants

Quibi, a new short-form streaming platform, has launched today on iPhone and Android. It offers shows from a wide variety of genres, with a maximum duration of about 10 minutes.

The platform’s creator, Jeffrey Katzenberg, is hoping to disrupt the streaming landscape, taking market share from the likes of Netflix and YouTube.

The platform’s unusual name is shorthand for ‘Quick Bites’ and refers to the compact run-times of the shows on offer. There are already some big names coming to the platform too, in a bid to lure viewers. The likes of Jennifer Lopez, Chrissy Teigen, Lena Waithe and Game of Thrones‘ Sophie Turner all feature.

Related: Disney Plus vs Netflix

Katzenberg told Vanity Fair last year that Quibi’s target audience includes 25-to-35-year-olds who spend their free time consuming content from Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat and TikTok.

Accordingly, Quibi makes the promise on its website: “No matter how you hold your phone, everything is framed to fit your screen”.

Take a look at Quibi’s content library and you’ll see – in line with this target market – a conspicuous effort to remain on-trend wherever possible. There’s a Daily Chill show, which on launch day consists of a five-minute walk along Malibu beach, with a voiceover telling you how the sand feels between your toes and how to breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. It’s dripping in mindfulness.

Elsewhere, there’s content about “sneaker culture”, drag performances, true crime and puppies. Katzenberg has clearly done his market research.

One of the leading titles at launch is Survive. Starring Sophie Turner and Corey Hawkins, it’s a challenging story about a girl’s struggle with her mental health and suicidal feelings.

Here at Trusted Reviews, we’re curious to see how well Quibi slots into the existing range of streaming services. It’s true that there isn’t anything quite like Quibi already out there, however, it’s also true that – if Quibi content catches on – it would be quite straightforward for competitors like Netflix to start offering short-form content.

Equally, another key competitor is YouTube. The free service (with paid options) is already basically king in the short-form video space. It’s going to be interesting to see how Quibi expects to compete with the video streaming behemoth following today’s launch.

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If you’re eager to try Quibi for yourself, the platform is offering a 90-day free trial for a limited time. Simply open up the App Store, or Google Play Store, on your phone of choice and hit download.

Annoyingly, you will need to input card details to access the free trial, but it should be fairly straightforward to cancel the subscription before getting billed at the end of your 90-day free stint.

The standard subscription cost, after the free trial, is £7.99 per month. However, Quibi is reportedly going to release a slightly cheaper, ad-supported version as another option for customers.

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