Roku to stream shows from shuttered Quibi service
San Francisco (AFP) –
Online television pioneer Roku on Friday said it is expanding its library with shows from Quibi, which made a failed debut last year with a streaming platform tailored for smartphones.
The Roku channel will soon feature exclusive Quibi shows starring celebrities such as Idris Elba, Kevin Hart, Liam Hemsworth, Anna Kendrick, Nicole Richie, Chrissy Teigen, and Lena Waithe, according to vice president of programming Rob Holmes.
"The quick bites and big stories made famous on Quibi will be available to stream on The Roku Channel, giving you access to hundreds of hours of new content," Holmes said in a blog post.
Short-form streaming service Quibi late last year pulled the plug on the platform aimed at smartphone users hungry for entertainment on the go.
The brainchild of Hollywood powerhouse Jeffrey Katzenberg, Quibi launched in April of 2020 with content tailored for busy people just as the pandemic compelled them to slow down and stay in.
The streaming service boasted more than 100 original series spanning a range of genres with episodes specifically designed for viewing on smartphones and lasting no more than 10 minutes each.
The fledgling platform scored 10 Emmy nominations including for cop spoof revival "Reno 911!" and dystopian thriller "Most Dangerous Game" including two Emmy wins for actors in "#FreeRayshawn."
The multibillion-dollar streaming platform had bet it could transform entertainment with short, Hollywood-quality clips.
While Quibi specialized in short-form shows to watch during spare minutes of the day, say waiting for transit or taking a break at work, people who hunkered down at home due to the coronavirus pandemic found time for big-screen options in an increasingly competitive streaming television market.
The Roku Channel is available in Britain, Canada, and the US for free on Roku streaming devices, the Web and on mobile devices, according to the company's website.
Roku has been overshadowed by Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime and other rivals in an increasingly competitive streaming television service market.
© 2021 AFP