Roku has announced that it is rebranding its content that was acquired from Quibi as "Roku Originals." The switch was announced on Roku's official blog, with Roku's VP of Engagement Growth Marketing, Sweta Patel, stating: Back in January, we announced The Roku Channel would soon be home to Quibi’s library of entertainment. Today, we’re excited to share that the Quibi service we acquired earlier this year will be re-branded as “Roku Originals.” Roku Originals will also be the brand name for future original programming for The Roku Channel, the home of free, ad-supported entertainment on the Roku platform."
Patel added some additional details in her full statement:
We’ll have more details on the launch of Roku Originals in May so be sure to check the Roku blog for more details soon.
"Roku Originals will give you free access to bold, fresh entertainment from the biggest names in Hollywood, including [Anna Kendrick (Dummy), Chrissy Teigen (Chrissy’s Court), Lena Waithe (You Ain’t Got These), Idris Elba (Elba vs. Block), Kevin Hart (Die Hart), and Liam Hemsworth (Most Dangerous Game)]. Soon all of you viewers in the U.S., the U.K., and Canada will be able to watch award-winning scripted entertainment and engaging documentaries, as well as new breakout unscripted series, all under the Roku Originals brand. More importantly, you can enjoy relevant, fun, and thought-provoking TV that is accessible to everyone, everywhere The Roku Channel is available.
This year, you’ll get the chance to stream more than 75 Roku Originals on The Roku Channel, including a dozen unreleased series. Roku Originals will join The Roku Channel’s diverse lineup of more than 40,000 free movies and programs and 165+ free live linear television channels."
Quibi's library of shows actually managed to generate a fair amount of interest in the streaming service, as big creators and/or big stars had featured projects on the streaming service. Unfortunately, Quibi's "game-changing" format of releasing ten-minute episodes was fatally impractical when the service launched alongside the COVID-19 pandemic. Mass commuting came to a screeching halt, and viewers stuck at home during the COVID lockdowns were looking for all the long-form content they could get their eyes on - no one was looking for ten minutes of entertainment.
On Roku, the various shows that Quibi produced actually stand a much better chance of gaining breakthrough exposure. Roku's audience is massive and widespread, and these "Roku Originals" are in many ways the final piece the streaming provider needs to lockdown in order to make it a continued competitor with Amazon, which has hardware (Firestick) and original content (Prime Video) firmly in place.