Since the launch of the Clubhouse on Android last month, there has been a real buzz around the new voice-based, invite-only social media app in India. Touted as the next big thing, the app has seen 5 million plus downloads already. But is Clubhouse worth all the hype? Or is it like tons of apps that become popular for a while and fade away from the public memory? Here is our take on the app.
The first thing that strikes one about the Clubhouse features is that it is voice-based. There are no videos, text messages or images which people are so fond of today. It makes the app distinct for some while loses the appeal for others.
The second thing is the invite-only exclusivity model. Although the Android version is available worldwide, you can only access the app once any existing user sends you an invite. Again, it affects the user in two-fold ways. The waiting levels up the excitement for a few, while others might choose to opt-out from using the app. Besides these features, here are some more that can be categorized as things we like and dislike.
Things We Like
Initially, when you get an invite and enter the Clubhouse's audio world, it captures your attention instantly. There are tons of exciting rooms ranging from films, music, politics, COVID-19, mental health and every topic under the sun. The curiosity regarding how it works, the rooms, the people and the app features keeps you going. As you continue exploring, you keep hopping from one discussion to another impulsively. You can either just listen to or become a part of it as and when you like it. There are no restrictions or notifications for open rooms.
2) People friendly
In open rooms, no matter if you are a friend or not, you are welcomed and given a chance to talk or do your thing. For instance, if you enter a room full of singers you can show your talent for singing. All you need to do is to tap a button and raise your hand. The moderator of the room will set the stage for you to perform.
If you are someone who loves listening or finds yourself more confident speaking without showing yourself, the Clubhouse app is a wonderful place to be with exciting rooms and discussions happening every day.
3) Games and Roasts
One of the regular features of the Clubhouse is various games played like shoot your shot( anyone can approach anyone by saying a pick-up line or by just complementing). The roast game is intense, and at the same time fun. People first take the consent of the person they want to roast, ask their limitations and go ahead roasting them in and out.
All these games can lighten up your mood and allow you to just relax and giggle for a while just by listening.
Besides just fun and games, the Clubhouse app also provides you with rooms that talk about various informative topics like how to start a business, what content creators can do to gain followers, how can aspiring actors give auditions, and much more interesting stuff. One to one chat with experts and professionals, conferences, talk-shows are also conducted.
5) Voice-based Platform
Voice-based podcasts and live panel discussions are quite popular today. Therefore Clubhouse app have the potential to trump them all and become the first choice for many. Many celebrities and industry leaders have shown their support to the app as well which have increased its popularity.
Things We Dislike
1) Invasion of Privacy & Abuse
Clubhouse app does not have a voice-recording option. Moreover, the audio recording of a session is recorded for a short period of time in case any complaints are received. However, there have been serious cases of harassment, invasion of privacy, abuse and other such concerns.
As mentioned before, the app is initially addictive, but after a certain point, there is a good possibility of rooms and events becoming mundane. The whole selection of rooms can be overwhelming for some as well. In such cases, users become selective and only attend a room in which they are extremely interested.
3) Lack of Visuals & Videos
Many believe that the Clubhouse app will not sustain as compared to other applications like Instagram or YouTube. The reason being that humans find visuals and videos more appealing and interesting. Since Clubhouse is all about voice, it can turn away many users from using it continuously.
So, is Clubhouse good, and does it stand the chance among its competitors and existing social media apps? It is too early to answer the question. India is one of the biggest markets for the latest social media app. The diverse population in the country, in the coming days, will certainly give a clear picture of the future of the Clubhouse app.
Written by Mayank Vora, Nirav Gosalia and Harish Patel -Director's at LogicLoop