File picture: Reuters/Dado Ruvic
File picture: Reuters/Dado Ruvic

Facebook working on Clubhouse-like audio chat app - report

By IANS Time of article published Feb 11, 2021

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San Francisco - Known to clone or lift ideas from its competitors to stay ahead in the game, Facebook is now reportedly working on to build its own social audio app like Clubhouse.

According to a report in The New York Times, the social network has asked employees to create a similar product like Clubhouse.

The product is "in its earliest stages of development" and the "project's code name could change".

"We've been connecting people through audio and video technologies for many years and are always exploring new ways to improve that experience for people," A Facebook spokesperson was quoted as saying in the report on Wednesday.

The news comes after Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg joined Clubhouse last week and participated in chat about the future of augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR).

Facebook has a history of cloning its competitors. Instagram in 2016 copied a Snapchat feature Stories that allows users to share ephemeral videos and photos.

Last year, Instagram debuted Reels, a TikTok-like video product.

When the video chat platform Zoom became popular last year, Facebook quickly created Rooms, a group video chat service.

"And this year, Facebook has been working on a competing product to Substack, the popular newsletter service," the report mentioned.

Twitter is also working on a Clubhouse competitor called Spaces, which is in beta development.

Launched less than a year ago by two Stanford University alumni, Rohan Seth and Paul Davison, voice-based app Clubhouse is already a craze among social media users worldwide.

It is currently available only to iPhone users and it is still in the invite-only mode.

Globally, around two million members are using Clubhouse, while in India, the app has seen over 12,000 downloads.

--IANS

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