92% of the people who signed up for free trials of Quibi in April decided not to become paying subscribers, new report claims
- Analytics firm Sensor Tower issue a report documenting Quibi’s difficult launch
- Just 8% of the people who downloaded the mobile streaming app at launch became paying subscribers according to Sensor Tower
- Quibi disputes Sensor Tower’s numbers but hasn’t released subscriber numbers
The overwhelming majority of people who signed up for the mobile video streaming service Quibi quit after their free trial period was over according to a new analytics firm report.
92% of the 910,000 users who initially signed up for Quibi when it launched in April chose to not convert to paying subscribers after completing a free three-month trial.
Just 72,000 users, or 8% of the total, chose to convert their accounts to either a $4.99 monthly subscription with ads, or a $7.99 monthly subscription with no ads.
Quibi has disputed Sensor Tower’s findings, saying its figures are ‘an order of magnitude lower’ than the real number, but the company has not said what its actual subscriber numbers are.
For comparison, Disney Plus converted 11% of the 9.5 million users who signed up for free trials during the first three days of its November 2019 launch, according to a report in The Verge.
Sensor Tower’s report also claims that Quibi has been downloaded by 4.5 million users total since launching, but a company spokesperson said the figure is actually 5.6 million.
Quibi did not disclose how many active subscribers were among those 5.6 million, but said the conversion rate has so far exceeded internal benchmarks.
‘Our conversion from download to trial is above mobile app benchmarks, and we are seeing excellent conversion to paid subscribers,’ Quibi’s spokesperson told The Verge, ‘both among our 90-day free trial sign-ups from April, as well as our 14-day free trial sign-ups from May and June.’
The company had initially hoped to attract 7.4 million paying subscribers in its first year, but a Wall Street Journal report in June claimed the company’s internal projections for the year had been adjusted downward to just two million.
The $1.75billion company co-founded by Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman, intends to become a mobile equivalent of Netflix, offering a range of original series conceived specifically to be viewed on smartphones and tablets.
The company has funded 46 original series with targeted runtimes of between seven and 10 minutes or less for each episode.
The company made a number of high-profile production deals with stars like Chrissy Teigen, Reese Witherspoon, Kevin Hart, Steven Spielberg, Guillermo del Toro, and others.
After its high-profile launch, signs of stress quickly emerged, with the app falling out of the Top 50 most downloaded listings on Apple’s App Store less than two weeks later.
In June, rumors circulated about some Quibi employees being unhappy about lavish fees paid to stars like Witherspoon, who reportedly earned $6million to narrate the nature series Fierce Animals.
According to the Wall Street Journal, there had also been growing tension between Whitman and Katzenberg, who was described by unnamed sources as ‘dictatorial’ and a micro-manager.
In an interview with the New York Times, Katzenberg assigned blame for the company’s struggles on the COVID-19 pandemic.
‘I attribute everything that has gone wrong to coronavirus,’ Katzenberg said. ‘Everything.’
PROGRAMMING HIGHLIGHTS FROM QUIBI’S DISAPPOINTING LAUNCH
‘Survive’ – starring Sophie Turner of HBO’s ‘Game of Thrones’ and Corey Hawkins (Straight Outta Compton)
The story of two survivors of a plane crash on a mountain who must work together as they battle the elements and personal demons to make it back home. The program is based on the Alex Morel novel and was given a ‘watch it’ rating by Hollywood Reporter television critic Daniel Feinberg
‘Flipped’ – a comedy starring Will Forte and Kaitlin Olson
A chronically underemployed couple wants to become the next great home renovation show duo on television until they run are kidnapped by a drug cartel and find themselves having to work on the homes of cartel members (Andy Garcia, Eva Longoria, and Broad City’s Arturo Castro)
Agua Donkeys – produced by the comedy video website Funny or Die
The series follows two pool-cleaning company workers as they seek out ‘the perfect tan, the perfect vibe, and the perfect mix of bromine and chlorine’ for pool cleaning. Based on a short film, the show has been called a ‘Californian Napoleon Dynamite’.
The Stranger – written and directed by Veena Sud (The Killing)
A mysterious Hollywood Hills rideshare passenger (Dane DeHaan) joins a young driver (Maika Monroe) on a 12-hour trip into the seedy underbelly of Los Angeles in a spine-chilling game of predator and prey.
#FreeRayshawn – from executive producer Antoine Fuqua
A drama Katzenberg pitched as a modern twist on the ‘1970s classic film ‘Dog Day Afternoon’. Stephan James (Homecoming) stars as Rayshawn, a veteran who has returned from the Iraq war and takes shelter in his apartment building after a botched drug deal. Laurence Fishburne (The Matrix) plays a sympathetic cop during the eventual police standoff.
50 States of Fright – anthology series from Evil Dead and original Spiderman director Sam Raimi
This horror series produced by Raimi draws inspiration from the folklore of the U.S. states. Rachel Brosnahan, Christina Ricci, Ming-Na Wen and others star.
Dummy – starring Anna Kendrick and Donal Logue (of the late Gotham)
This comedy follows an aspiring writer and her boyfriend’s sex doll. The show, originally written as a television pilot, has been developed into a film script, which is being segmented into episodes for Quibi.
Source: Entertainment Weekly