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Technology: Quibi keeps 8% of subscribers as free trials end, market researcher says

Quibi to support casting to TVs from iPhones this week; Android is next

  Quibi to support casting to TVs from iPhones this week; Android is next Quibi was a big bet on mobile-only streaming, but almost immediately after its April launch, users complained they couldn't watch on TVs.Launched in April as a big bet on mobile-only streaming, Quibi is also slowing down its release schedule of new programming, so it will have new big-budget shows to watch into next year. Previously, it said it had already shot enough material to keep releasing new series through late November.

Quibi, a star-studded mobile streaming service, has held onto about 8% of customers whose 90-day free trials ran out this week, mobile analytics firm Sensor Tower said Wednesday. Quibi launched April 6 with a 90-day free trial for anyone who preordered the service or signed up before May 1. The first wave of those free trials started to expire this week.

a woman standing in the snow: Survive, a drama starring Game of Thrones' Sophie Turner, was one of Quibi's short-form shows at launch. Quibi © Provided by CNET Survive, a drama starring Game of Thrones' Sophie Turner, was one of Quibi's short-form shows at launch. Quibi

Sensor Tower said a maximum of about 72,000 people who installed the app in its first three days have stayed on as paid subscribers now that their trial periods elapsed. That works out to about an 8% conversion to paid subscribers, according to Sensor Tower. The information was reported earlier by news site Protocol.

Quibi Cries Uncle, Lets You Stream Its Shows to Your TV

  Quibi Cries Uncle, Lets You Stream Its Shows to Your TV Since the beginning, Quibi has been adamant that its streaming video service is a mobile-first endeavor. However, after launching right as The Pandemic was gaining steam—which made the idea of watching short videos on a phone or tablet during your daily commute seem like quaint nostalgia from a before time—today Quibi has finally added the ability to watch its shows on a real TV. © Photo: Sam Rutherford (Gizmodo) In a tweet Tuesday evening, Quibi chief product officer Tom Conrad said the latest update to Quibi (version 1.3) now includes the ability to stream its shows to your TV using Apple AirPlay.

Some people who signed up for Quibi as late as May 1 still have time left on their 90-day trial periods. After May 1, Quibi began offering two-week free trials, which remain available to new members. After Quibi free trials end, the service costs $5 a month with advertising and $8 a month for an ad-free tier.

Quibi didn't immediately respond to a message seeking comment. A Quibi representative told Protocol that it disputed Sensor Tower's figures, saying the service has "excellent conversion to paid subscribers" and noting that its app has been downloaded more than 5.6 million times. (Sensor Tower's latest estimate is that Quibi's app has been installed about 4.5 million times since launch.)

Quibi launched in the US and Canada as a service designed for watching on the go, just as swaths of North America were locking down because of the coronavirus pandemic, one of several hurdles to the service reaching its growth goals. The company's mobile-only strategy underestimated the demand to watch its big-budget programming on TVs, especially as people were stuck at home. Quibi also made its programming harder to share on social networks, stunting virality and word of mouth.

3 Big Moves Quibi Should Consider to Revive Fledgling Streaming Service

  3 Big Moves Quibi Should Consider to Revive Fledgling Streaming Service Hesh Rabkin, Tony Soprano's sage advisor on "The Sopranos," once said "a hit is a hit. And this, my friend, is not a hit." Rabkin's advice may as well apply to Quibi, the new streaming service from Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman that has struggled with lukewarm downloads and little praise for its bite-sized shows, despite a laundry list of A-list stars enlisted to make content. Quibi has pulled in a little more than 4 million downloads since debuting in April, according to data provided by Sensor Tower. But how many of those early users, many of whom signed up using a free 90-day trial, will actually pay for the service remains to be seen.

a woman taking a selfie in the snow: Survive, a drama starring Game of Thrones' Sophie Turner, is one of Quibi's short-form shows planned to stream at launch.  © Quibi

Survive, a drama starring Game of Thrones' Sophie Turner, is one of Quibi's short-form shows planned to stream at launch.

The company aimed to have 7.4 million paying members by the end of it first year, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Quibi hoped its unconventional strategy -- very expensive, star-packed programming released in 10-minute-max episodes that you can watch only on phones or mobile devices -- would find a sweet spot in a streaming landscape crowded with the likes of Netflix, Disney Plus, Apple TV Plus, Peacock and HBO Max. And of course, Quibi faces a Goliath in YouTube, the short-video specialist with more than 2 billion viewers every month.

Covid-19 vaccine trials have been slow to recruit Black and Latino people -- and that could delay a vaccine .
The multi-billion-dollar effort to get a coronavirus vaccine on the market could see delays because researchers haven't recruited sufficient numbers of minorities to join the clinical trials. © CNN Of the 350,000 people who've registered online for a coronavirus clinical trial, 10% are Black or Latino, according to Dr. Jim Kublin, executive director of operations for the Covid-19 Prevention Network. That's not nearly enough, as study subjects in trials are supposed to reflect the population that's affected.

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