Quibi founder Jeffrey Katzenberg, in confirming Quibi's demise after less than seven months, said "the world has changed dramatically since Quibi launched and our standalone business model is no longer viable." So was the unusual circumstances of 2020, specifically the coronavirus pandemic, to blame for Quibi's demise? "As with any simplistic set-up that boils the complexity of the world down to two simple options, the answer here is probably 'why not both?'" says Kathryn VanArendonk. "I think it’s likely that 2020 killed Quibi much faster than it otherwise would’ve died. Founder Jeffrey Katzenberg infamously blamed the pandemic for Quibi’s failure to launch, and CEO Meg Whitman cited the company’s decision to halt its marketing efforts during this summer’s Black Lives Matter protests as a factor in its slow growth. They’re both not wrong that this year made for some exceptionally difficult circumstances. It is hard to imagine what a big midsummer Quibi ad campaign would’ve looked like, but Whitman is probably correct that there was no way to do it in the middle of a global outcry over systemic racism in a way that would’ve seemed … uh … graceful. Likewise, a mobile video platform was always going to be a tough sell at precisely the time when many people suddenly found themselves with no opportunity to be mobile. In the end, though, I’m extremely doubtful that a 2020 without unprecedented Black Lives Matter protests and without a pandemic would’ve been enough to save Quibi. It would’ve helped greatly if any of the shows had been significantly more appealing or popular. It also would’ve helped if the vaunted “turnstile” technology — an in-app feature that would automatically adjust the video frame depending on whether you held the phone vertically or horizontally — did something other than make all the horizontal frames feel sparse and all the vertical frames weirdly cropped. It probably would’ve helped if its name sounded less silly, and if Katzenberg and Whitman got along, and if anyone at the company had a vision for what the content should look like rather than just how big the money could be. The thing I think truly killed Quibi, though, is that what was intended as a mobile-only video platform remembered the video part but forgot that it needed to exist on a phone...Quibi was a video outlet for your phone that forgot what a phone is for: communicating with other people. Until very recently, long after the initial launch glow had faded, there was no way to screenshot Quibi shows. You couldn’t take clips and send them to your friends, you couldn’t add your own comment, there were no immersive camera features, and it was almost impossible to even send a link of your favorite episode to someone else."