ReelShort is a Streaming App That's a Solution Without a Problem
This is a single insight from This Week in Apps - Up and Up and Up. Check out the full article for more insights.
ReelShort is seeing a download surge right now and that's pushing it up the charts - #3 overall in the US App Store and #16 on Google Play.
Looking at its description, which mentions streaming bite-sized content, and its name, I immediately remembered I've seen an app like this before - Quibi.
Don't remember Quibi? I don't blame you...
Quibi was a new streaming app that launched right as lockdowns started in 2020 with a "novel" idea of short videos. The really well-produced kind though, not the TikTok kind. A lot of big names ran it and raised over a billion dollars for it.
It failed veeeeeery quickly. Is ReelShort a newer Quibi?
Quibi 2, I mean ReelShort, launched in August of 2022 and is, for all intents and purposes, a competitor to all other streamers. What it offers is very short episodes and a combination of premium and free (ad-supported) content.
ReelShort has managed to collect 11M downloads across the App Store and Google Play since launching, according to our App Intelligence.
The app has seen its highest spike in daily downloads over the last few weeks with Saturday being its biggest day of downloads. Our estimates show ReelShort made its way into 326K iPhones and Android devices on Saturday and 1.9M downloads since the beginning of November.
I did notice something important. When looking at the downloads by store, the App Store and Google Play had an almost even contribution to the total. This is normally a sign that the downloads are the result of increased demand but rather a paid ad campaign, and that's the case here.
Considering this is somewhat new and novel, it makes sense. The real question is - will it stick?
One way to answer this is to look at revenue.
ReelShort uses coins, its own in-app currency, to pay for premium content. This is pretty clever because once purchased, most users won't feel like they're really "paying" for content, making it easier to spend more money in the app.
That's not common for streaming apps.
Since its release, ReelShort brought in $22M of net revenue from the App Store and Google Play. Unlike downloads, most revenue is coming from the App Store. Like downloads, Saturday was also the highest day of revenue for ReelShort with $459K of net revenue from the App Store and Google Play, according to our estimates.
And this is all net which is what ReelShort gets to take home after Apple and Google's fees.
It seems that the ads are working and people are actually engaging with the app enough to want the premium content. Compared to Quibi's numbers, ReelShort is monetizing much better at $2/downloads vs Quibi's $0.73/download.
Revenue per download isn't a good measure for stickiness at all, but more revenue makes it easier to produce more content, which is what's necessary to succeed these days. Even larger streamers are struggling with that.
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All figures included in this report are estimated. Unless specified otherwise, estimated revenue is always net, meaning it's the amount the developer earned after Apple and Google took their fee.