Clubhouse recently rose to fame after Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Tesla's Elon Musk appeared on the social audio platform, with around 4.7 million downloads as of this time based on Apptopia's count (via Axios). Now, Facebook is setting its sights on cloning the startup service.
The social media giant is reportedly in the early phase of developing a rival to Clubhouse with the goal of replicating its core features, The New York Times reported. Clubhouse is essentially an audio-based chat service on iOS where people can create or join group voice chat rooms. These audio group chats can accommodate up to thousands of people who can either participate or listen to discussions about various topics. Clubhouse is invite-only at present since it's still in beta, making it less accessible to everyone for now.
It's not clear for now what Facebook's version of the service will be called or whether it could take the form of a standalone app instead of a new feature that will be baked into its core or subsidiary apps. But Facebook isn't the only social media titan keen on copying Clubhouse's appeal. Twitter began testing its own audio chat platform called Spaces late last year on iOS, although it recently announced that an Android version is being developed as well.
Facebook has never been shy at cloning services that gain traction among users even at an early stage. One such glaring move was when its very own Instagram cloned Snapchat's Stories feature and, most recently, TikTok when it launched Reels. The tech giants' increasing interest in this type of social interaction marks the growing importance of social audio. But whether this trend will be sustained in the long term remains to be seen.
Source: The New York Times