Los Angeles-based Ficto launches its Quibi competitor — with Niantic as a content partner

Consumers now have their first chance to sample the wares of a short-form streaming service — and it’s not Quibi.

Ficto, a streaming service (without a paywall) offering interactive dramas, film adaptations, comedies, documentaries, talk shows, game shows and news, is now live on iOS and Android.

The company’s entertainment is designed to be interactive with live streaming, geo-location, live chat, polling, choice-based narratives, 360 viewing, augmented reality and click through e-commerce, the company said.

Their slate of 30 shows at launch is far more sparse than Quibi’s robust and star-studded lineup, and the average viewing times of five minutes per episode is a bit shorter than Quibi’s, too. Series run anywhere from three to 10 episodes, and there are an additional 20 shows currently in production.

Shows on the platform at launch include a gameplay-focused series built around the augmented reality game, Ingress, developed by Niantic, the game studio behind the massive AR hit Pokémon GO.

“Storytelling is incredibly important at Niantic and we are always looking for interesting ways to expand on the narrative of our real-world mobile games,” said “Ingress: The Series” director Spencer McCall.

Other shows on the platform include the documentary series “Represent,” which follows women surfers looking to take the sport to the Olympic games (now scheduled for 2021); “East of La Brea,” a show from executive producer Paul Feig, which follows two Muslim women in Los Angeles; the dating show “Date & Switch,” which lets an audience decide who contestants should date; “Brothers from the Suburbs,” a comedy about three African American teens growing up in an affluent, white suburban community; and “Nothingman,” about a resident of Los Angeles’ Skid Row.

Key to Ficto’s pitch to content creators is the company’s smart contract system that automatically pays royalties to the show’s producers and talent based on how often their content is viewed. The pre-determined contracts and revenue shares are intended to draw in new talent with a more equitable — and longer term — revenue stream than the upfront payments that are a part of most streaming contract, according to Ficto co-founder and chief executive, Mike Esola.

The company also has a brand studio, Ficto Studio, that works with marketers and agencies to help them design promotions based on Ficto’s interactive capabilities. These promotions range from sponsorship opportunities to augmented reality, geo-location, click-to-purchase, product integration, launch events, creator collaborations and other promotions.