How could Jeffrey Katzenberg — the man who pioneered “What if Martin Scorsese was a fish?” cinematic technology — have gone so wrong? How could Meg Whitman — a billionaire who advised on both of Mitt Romney’s presidential campaigns — have missed the mark in a streaming app aimed at capturing those sweet millennial eyeballs? We now have the answer to “Is Anyone Watching Quibi?” and it’s “No, lol.” On Wednesday, three months out from the streamer’s much-hyped launch and 90-day trial period, the mobile analytics firm Sensor Tower estimated that only about 72,000 of Quibi’s initial users stuck around and turned into paying subscribers. That’s a conversion rate of 8 percent.
The Sensor Tower report tracked Quibi users who initially signed up “from the first few days” when the three-month trial was on offer, which amounted to 910,000 users total, but didn’t account for users who signed up in May or June. A Quibi spokesperson told the Verge that “over 5.6 million people have downloaded the Quibi app” and challenged the Sensor Tower report, saying, “The number of paid subscribers is incorrect by an order of magnitude.” Still, the streamer has not publicly reported its total number of paid subscribers. Quibi’s $1.75 billion gamble is seeming more and more like “Sammy Paradise” every day.