The move is the latest by the mobile-focused service to adapt to the market conditions at launch, which are not what anyone expected. The company has offered a 90-day free trial and also has ramped up efforts to create a way for some users to stream programming via their connected TV for a more lean-back experience suited to the COVID-19 moment. Quibi had initially been purely focused on mobile, with its short-form episodes (aka “quick bites”) appealing to young, on-the-go viewers. During the pandemic shutdowns, few people have been “on the go” anywhere.
With Friday being the final day customers can sign up for the free 90-day trial, Quibi posted the episodes of Most Dangerous Game, The Stranger and Dummy as a way of enticing new users.
For anyone accessing the episodes via a connected-TV device, the company’s signature Turnstyle technology — which enables seamless viewing either vertically or horizontally — won’t come into play.
Quibi, which launched April 6, is one of several major new challengers to Netflix. Its service is $5 a month for an ad-supported version and $8 without ads. In the early going, Quibi’s app has been downloaded 2.6 million times. Katzenberg has stressed in interviews since the launch that the service should be judged as a long-term play and not on the number of initial downloads.
A Quibi rep did not immediately return a request for comment on the YouTube move.
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