Quibi’s latest stab at cultural relevance is a screenshotting function meant to let fans meme-ify its content — which, given the paltry number of people actually watching its shows, will probably see mixed results.
The screenshot function was announced on Twitter this week by Tom Conrad, the company’s chief product officer. As with anything else about Quibi, the screenshotting process will not work as it does with other apps — you will not be able to take a screenshot as you normally would by simply pressing the buttons on the side of your iPhone, for example.
Rather, as a workaround to digital rights management terms it has with its content creators, Quibi has enabled a tool that allows users to press-and-hold on a video screen to populate a menu. From there, they can slide their finger to the right to grab a screenshot of whatever series they’re watching. Josh Constine shared a video demonstrating how this tool works within the app:
Quibi finally built a screenshotting workaround so it can spawn memes.
Do you think it’s too little too late, or one Game Of Thrones away from relevance? pic.twitter.com/CIYF9tCf1a
— Josh Constine -SignalFire (@JoshConstine) July 23, 2020
Conrad noted that Quibi is “still tweaking some details” — there are no captions on screenshots, for one — and that the tool is “a sort of public beta in our 1.7 release.”
Really what we’re seeing here is the late addition of another feature that probably should have been available at launch, particularly since Quibi’s entire thing was creating a gimmicky buzz-product seemingly catered to Gen Z-ers. Barring any ability to actually share the content available on its service while also limiting its shows to phones — a disaster the company has since partly remedied by introducing support for TV casting — was curious and, clearly, very dumb. And while this tool is not a 1:1 replacement for button-enabled screenshots and is also arriving exceptionally late, it’s at least something.
Whether anyone’s going to get the reference to now-enabled screenshots from a service it seems only a few people are actually paying for, however, is another issue entirely.