WTF is Quibi?

And how many streaming services is too many?

It might sound like something a hungry vegan would order in their favourite plant-based cafe, but Quibi is actually the latest video streaming service hoping to hijack some of your telly time.

It’s got some big-name backers and a few nifty ideas about how to get people watching more videos on their phones – but will it have any impact on Netflix’s mounting pile of cash?

So if I can’t have smashed Quibi on toast, what can I have?

You can have avocado like everybody else. And while you munch, Quibi will serve up some quick bites for your eyes. Its videos will be between four and 10 minutes long, so you can easily fit one in while you eat your breakfast, when you’re waiting to see the dentist, or while you’re squeezed into a train carriage on your way home from work.

Ah, so that’s where the name comes from

Yep, this is a long way from the 60-minute epics you have to arrange your life around. That’s not to say it’ll be full of throwaway stuff you won’t get hooked on though. There’ll be three hours of new stuff each day and episodes of Quibi’s most high-budget shows will cost the same to make as an hour of Game of Thrones, plus they’ve got people like Stephen Spielberg, Guillermo del Toro, and Training Day director Antoine Fuqua onboard. There will also be specially made news bulletins and even full movies chopped up into smaller chunks, or, as people usually call them, TV shows.

I’m already paying for Netflix, Amazon, Now TV and Disney+ – why should I shell out even more for another one?

Quibi hasn’t revealed its app yet but it has shown off the nifty Turnstile feature, which allows you to watch stuff in either portrait or landscape – turn your phone around and the orientation will change so that the screen is always filled. Every show on Quibi is filmed in both formats, so each one has two ways to watch. While not as interactive as something like the Bandersnatch episode of Charlie Brooker’s Black Mirror, you will sometimes have to switch between the two while watching to get the whole picture. That means it’s unlikely to ever be available on tellies, unless you’ve got a Samsung Sero.

How much will it cost and when will it be available?

Quibi will launch in the US on 6 April but there’s no news of a UK release date yet. It’ll cost US$4.99 a month for the ad-supported version, or US$7.99 to watch without interruptions.