Facebook Takes on Clubhouse with New Audio Features

BY Mahit Huilgol

Published 19 Apr 2021

Clubhouse is an audio-based social media app that rose to popularity early this year. Since then, social media platforms including Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are building features rivaling Clubhouse. Today Facebook has announced a bunch of new audio features that compete with Clubhouse.

Facebook has introduced audio-only rooms meant for live chats. In this room, everyone can speak, tell stories, and spark interesting conversations. The company has also launched “soundbites” that lets you share short voice messages. Also on offer is a new podcast recording feature. Facebook is yet to launch all the features. That said, the audio rooms feature is expected to debut by this summer.

The Rooms feature seems to be heavily inspired by Clubhouse. Facebook says the new feature will allow fans to support creators and “donate to causes they care about.” Furthermore, Facebook will launch new monetization models that allow creators to charge for access to a single session of Live Audio Room or charge via a subscription model. The most significant difference is that users don’t have to worry about being on camera and instead focus on the conversation.

Facebook’s “soundbites” feature seems like an audio version of Twitter. It allows users to post short audio clips in News Feed. The best part is that Facebook offers a slew of creator-centric features like special effects, transcriptions, and more. Facebook is also working on a podcasting feature. It lets you browse, listen and download podcasts on the Facebook app.

Our Take

Unlike Clubhouse, Facebook’s new features focus on creating new streams of revenue for influencers. We need to realize that Clubhouse rose to popularity after people used the platform to voice their dissent against suppressive regimes. We hope Facebook’s new feature is not only about influencers but also about building communities and making new meaningful connections.

[via FB]