With the COVID-19 pandemic still on the go, human interaction has been at a premium (if you followed the rules) for the past year or so. And while apps such as Zoom have soared to the top of the pile when it comes to networking and video-chat apps, an app called Clubhouse has gained in popularity among social media users, despite it being an invite-only app limited to iOS users. Thanks to some new investment, though, Android users could soon gain access to Clubhouse on the Android Play Store.
What is Clubhouse?
Well, it’s an audio-only social media app that has “rooms” of people having conversations that you can flit in and out of. You’ll enter the room as an audience member and if you want to actively contribute to the conversation you can raise a hand, whereby the speakers can choose to invite you to join in. The other option is to create your own room to chat with members who pop by. There are no cameras or texting, you engage in conversation using your very own voice which allows for inflection and tone to be heard and responded to.
Clubhouse adheres to the following principles:
- Be yourself. The authenticity of Clubhouse begins with the people.
- Be respectful. This applies to every person, at all times.
- Be inclusive. Tolerate, welcome, and consider diverse people and perspectives.
- Build empathy and understanding. Engage in debates that are in good faith.
- Foster meaningful and genuine connections. This is what Clubhouse is all about.
The creators of Clubhouse say that they expect to start work on the Android app “soon”, and that they’ve already begun developing new accessibility and localization features. The new investment will allow Clubhouse to:
- Develop an Android app to expand its user base
- Scale up its server and infrastructure to cope with the influx of users
- Scale up the Trust & Safety and Support teams to increase the ability to detect and prevent abuse and also achieve same-day approval for clubs
- Improve ranking and discovery to help tailor search results to your interests
- Invest in creators by recognizing their contributions and running tests to allow creators to be paid directly via tips, tickets, or subscriptions.
It’s an interesting concept, and certainly for the times that we live in, one that could help us maintain that ‘human touch’ that is missing when working from home or self-isolating.