A novel app called Clubhouse has taken ardent social media users by storm. Developed by a powerful duo- Paul Davison, a Silicon Valley entrepreneur, and Rohan Seth, an ex-Google employee, the social media app is based on audio-chat. In other words, the Clubhouse app is an amalgamation of talkback radio, conference call, and Houseparty app that has built its reputation, in part, on exclusivity.
In this post, we will talk in detail about this innovative app and help you develop your very own audio social media app like Clubhouse.
Clubhouse App Overview
By now, many of you must have heard celebrities and influencers talk about the conversations they are having on the Clubhouse app. And the curious ones must have tried to download the app, only to be dismayed to find out they have been put on a waitlist. Although it may seem that the Clubhouse app owners don’t want the regular folks to know what is going down on the app, we are here to spill the beans.
Launched in 2020, Clubhouse is currently only available for iPhone users. It is a place where people can come together to host, listen to, or join conversations within the app’s community. When a user opens the app, he can come across a list of rooms along with a list showing who is in each room. The users can use the app to participate in the different conversations on varying topics, sometimes even with celebrities like Kevin Hart and Oprah Winfrey. Alternatively, they can create a new one and invite new people to start fresh conversations.
Furthermore, the app is invitation-only. This means that anyone who wishes to join the app has to be brought in by someone who already has a Clubhouse account. Nevertheless, one can download the app and put their name on the waiting list. However, there is no guarantee that their account will ever be accepted.
Clubhouse Is Now Available On Android As Well
Good news for Android users! Clubhouse, a social-audio app has been launched on Android also, by the San Francisco-based company. After being an iOS-only, invitation-only app for more than a year, on Sunday May 2021, Clubhouse has debuted its Android app. Well, the testing on this Android app was started last year only.
By getting launched on the most popular mobile OS, Android, no one can stop Clubhouse to get well-recognized all over the world soon. In a blog post, the company said, “Our plan over the next few weeks is to collect feedback from the community, fix any issues we see, and work to add a few final features like payments and club creation before rolling it out more broadly,”.
For the first time, this successful move of the company will ease Android users to experience world’s-best audio-based social networks. Currently, in the US, the beta app is live, but according to the company, the Android app will soon be available to other English-speaking markets, and then next to the rest of the world.
To use this, invite-only voice-based social media app, the non-US users need to pre-register their interest in the Clubhouse app via its page on the Play Store, and ahead, they will be notified once the app is available in their country also.
Clubhouse Stats Showing Its Popularity
The new audio-based social media app is currently invite-only. Therefore, not much is known about this exclusive app. Here, are some significant Clubhouse statistics that will help you understand the app better.
- As of April 2021, Clubhouse has 18 million downloads globally. The grew quickly in a very brief period as the platform was adopted by several high-profile individuals, including Elon Musk, Mark Zuckerberg, and Kayne West.
- Currently, the app has 10 million weekly active users, up from 2 million in January 2021. In May 2020, this number was limited to a mere 1,500.
- Clubhouse app is presently valued at $4 billion. This valuation was $100 million in May 2020. Over 180 businesses and venture capitalists have invested in Clubhouse, helping it join the ranks of Airbnb and Uber.
As of now, Clubhouse is ranked #16 in the App Store under the social networking category.
Why Is Clubhouse So Popular?
Going by the statistics, Clubhouse has witnessed a great surge in the number of users in the last three months. According to an AppFigure report, US makes up the majority of Clubhouse downloads, while Germany, Japan, and UK quickly follow the lead. But why is the Clubhouse app so popular? Well, let’s find out.
1. Simple to use
One of the best things about this app is that it is super easy to use. It features a simple design together with handy buttons and an intuitive UX to make the application very appealing. Besides, there is a camera which has simplified things for many people. It doesn’t matter if you are dressed in your pajamas and don’t have your hair tied properly. You can indulge in conversations while going about your household chores or pedaling on your stationary bike.
2. The audio-based apps market is yet untapped
The owners of the Clubhouse app have caught the right moment to launch an audio-based social networking app. This is one of the greatest reasons for Clubhouse’s unprecedented popularity. Currently, there are not many apps that deliver an exceptional audio-based experience. Besides, the reputation of Clubhouse banks on its exclusivity.
3. Easy to share knowledge
In the midst of a global pandemic, people all over the world are confined to their homes. In such trying times, the Clubhouse app is offering a unique opportunity to the users to improve their abilities, master new things, and expand their horizons. With the app, it is very easy to join training rooms offering various lectures and helpful tips. From learning how to become a designer to building a thriving startup, there are so many interesting topics that users can tune in to.
4. Right marketing strategy employed with initial users being celebrities and tech innovators
Clubhouse had a kickass start thanks to famous celebrities and tech innovators who were the first to get an invite. In fact, the meteoric rise in the number of Clubhouse users can be attributed to the recent conversation between Tesla’s CEO Elon Musk and chief of Robinhood Markets Vladimir Tenev on the platform. So bringing celebrities on board was an exceptional move that has largely contributed to Clubhouse’s success. For most users, the chance to stay in one room (even virtually) with a famous person is very inspiring.
Recently Facebook Also Introduced Live Audio rooms for Groups and Messenger
Facebook will soon allow users to create live audio chat rooms on Facebook Groups and Messenger, which is the concept behind Clubhouse. The company said that around 1.8 billion people use Groups every month and they are planning to test audio rooms with these Groups initially. The audio room feature will also be available for popular public figures, who can host audio conversations with others on Facebook. This feature is expected to be launched in June – July 2021.
Spotify Also Launched Greenroom On IoS & Android To Compete With Clubhouse
Being available on both Android and iOS and running across 135 countries, the Greenroom app is launched by Spotify. The Swedish online music streaming app Greenhouse permits users to join the live discussions or host theirs.
This app is based on the current Locker Room code, which is an audio app targeting sports. As per Spotify, Locker Room users will now receive an update to rebuild the app and offer it the Greenhouse design and experience.
How Does An Audio Social Media App Like Clubhouse Work?
Clubhouse app offers a space where the users can meet and host or listen to discussions on varied topics. A map of the room, as well as a list showing who all are there in each room, is displayed when a user opens the app.
Now let’s look at the functioning of the Clubhouse app in detail.
1. Find An Audio Room Or Create Any Specific Type Of Audio Room
Users can easily view an existing room and join it to participate in the conversation. Alternatively, they can create and modify their own rooms. When entering a room, the user is on mute by default. He/she can raise hands to request participation in a discussion. The room’s assigned moderator and speakers decide who can speak next.
There is also a “Leave Quietly” feature that enables the users to leave any room without interrupting the ongoing discussion.
Furthermore, there are four types of rooms in Clubhouse:
- Open: As the name suggests, these are open public rooms that anyone can join or view.
- Social: Only the followers of a person can view and join Social rooms.
- Closed: These are private rooms. Joining them is possible by invite-only.
- Club: These are rooms held by a club that isn’t on the events calendar.
In every Clubhouse Club, there are 4 types of memberships.
- Founder: The club’s founder is the head of the virtual cloud that has the authority to invite members and adjust the rules.
- Admin: This is a role assigned by the club’s founder. An admin can confirm and remove any member from the club or set their privacy as either public or private.
- Members: Members of the club can create their own private rooms or join conversations taking place in both public and private rooms.
- Followers: A follower can only participate in public club activities. He has no authority to create a separate room.
2. Make Friends
The Clubhouse app supports the ability to create a list of friends who use the app. You can contact them directly outside of any servers. The best and most straightforward way to do that is by locating their names in servers you have already joined.
3. Connect Accounts and Build A Profile
Clubhouse enables the users to easily connect their social media accounts to the app and track down people they know and amplify their user profile. Connecting accounts is easy and works just like it does with other social media apps- mostly by enabling the users to enter their password for other accounts and connect immediately.
4. Listen & Be Heard
Once the users have set up their profile, they can move on to the main functions of the Clubhouse app- hosting chat rooms, meeting new people, joining conversations with absolute strangers, or simply listening to the steady stream of content. Much like Houseparty, users can mute or unmute themselves. They can join audio chat rooms that automatically disappear once the conversation has concluded.
Also Read: How To Develop An Audiobook App Like Audible
How Does Clubhouse Make Money?
- App subscription
- In-app advertisement: Clubhouse app also makes money by advertising different products and other services to the customers.
- Premium pricing for authority speakers
- Premium tickets for live audio talks or streams: The Clubhouse app organizes special sessions with high-profile speakers who talk on varied topics to educate the listeners. These sessions can be very fruitful for the mental and vocational development of an individual. Listeners can purchase the tickets to these live audio sessions on the portal itself. This is an effective and interesting way of making money from the listeners.
- Premium membership for Brands and Companies
Other Popular Audio Based Social Media Apps
Audlist is a popular audio-focused social networking app that is available on both Android and iOS. The incredible app enables users to interact with different content creators through audio messages on their posts. The users cannot write anything to interact except a suitable short title for their audio post. One of Audlist’s upcoming features is the ability to post audio stories that will stay on the feed for 24 hours only. Lastly, the app is free to use.
HearMeOut is another audio-based app available for free on Android and iOS. The app is focused on audios of up to 42 seconds. It also enables the users to add one photograph as the cover image of the post. With this app, you can easily share content on popular social media platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. You can also add sound effects to your posts, including morning bass, 70’s radio, and more. This app is also free to use.
Available on Android and iOS, Listen follows a slightly distinctive approach to audio content. The app lets you record your voice and then send it to different people. After you have sent a voice note, you can start a one-to-one conversation with someone. The app is free to download but offers in-app purchases.
Riffr is a free app that focuses on audios of varying lengths, from 5 seconds to up to 3 minutes. It is available on both Android and iOS and enables you to add one photograph as a cover image to your sound along with interesting voice modifiers. With Riffr, you can share all your posts on all other social media platforms.
Steps To Make An App Like Clubhouse
1. Research & Idea Validation
Before investing fortunes of money, you need to validate your app idea to make sure it will survive on the market. If you are working with an app development company, the professionals on their team will help you evaluate the strong and weak points of your app idea and find a unique solution to address the needs of your target audience.
This stage should also include researching your competitors as well as their app solutions. When it comes to Clubhouse, there are no direct competitors at the moment. Recently, Twitter has launched audio tweets for its iOS app users. However, it is not the same as Clubhouse. Having few or no competitors means it is the perfect time to build an app like Clubhouse and capitalize on the growing trend of audio-based apps.
MVP stands for Minimum Viable Product. It is a version of your app that comprises core features and is launched with certain kinds of restrictions, for instance, for a limited user base or in a specific geographic area. Most app development companies will persuade you to opt for an MVP to check the user’s response to your app.
Talking about Clubhouse, the app itself is primarily an MVP. This is evident as the app does not even have so much as a website. Also, the lack of some popular features, such as video support, text messaging, and intuitive design, is further indications of the same.
MLP, on the other hand, stands for Minimum Lovable Product. In simple words, an MLP is a version of your app that comprises only core functionalities but is built with the intention to seize the user’s emotional response.
In a market that is so saturated with social media apps, it is important to be remembered and not just get noticed. While MVP only focuses on basic functionality, and MLP combines core features and a unique design. So, it is advisable to go for an MLP that is made to be eye-catching, intuitive, and makes the users come back for more.
3. Design & Development
This is the longest phase that takes the maximum amount of time. Typically, the app design is created in three stages:
- Low-fidelity prototype: These prototypes are hand-drawn on a piece of paper or compiled as digital sketches. The main purpose of preparing this is to lay a foundation for user experience design. It helps to understand the placement of different buttons and the relation between screens.
- Medium-fidelity prototype: Although mostly black and white, medium-fidelity prototypes offer a basic understanding of the user interface. Their purpose is to ensure the app owner and the development team are on the same page.
- High-fidelity prototype: These prototypes offer a strong representation of the finished design. Most companies prefer to make high-fidelity prototypes in the form of app mockups. This is a great idea to provide these prototypes to a group of beta users for approval.
At this stage, it is also important to determine the platform for which the app will be developed. If you have a good budget, it is advisable to prepare the app for both iOS and Android. However, if you struggle with a restricted budget, you can choose the platform that is most used by your target audience and then expand later on.
This is what the Clubhouse app did. Right now, it is only available on the iOS platform but the Android version is said to be in its developmental stage. And this is after receiving $100 million funding from a venture capital firm.
4. Feedback and Iteration
During the initial stages of development, you can sit with your app development team and decide on the metrics to follow for assessing the performance of your app. For a social media app like Clubhouse, the metrics to assess are as follows:
- Number of active monthly users
- Number of downloads
- Session length and intervals
- Sticking rate (how regularly the users open the app)
- Bounce rate
- Daily sessions
- Screen flow for evaluating the user experience
Once the app is launched, the next and most important step is to monitor its performance and collect valuable user feedback. This feedback helps to evaluate user experience and point out any drawbacks in the app. If you have any marketing campaign in place, the results from that will also help you assess the overall feedback.
After collecting all the feedback, you can go back to the previous step and make changes in the app and launch the next iteration.
Features For A Voice-Based Social Media Network App
- Onboarding: With a voice-based app, it is important to provide an onboarding feature to help users quickly get acquainted with the app’s features and functionalities.
- Sign-up/log-in: Having a simple and straightforward sign-up page is a huge plus. You can also integrate your social media networks or email services to make the sign-up process easy for the users.
- Interests: This feature allows the users to select any particular topic they are most interested in.
- Profile: Having a profile is one of the prime features of every app. Clubhouse does not offer a lot in this respect. The app’s profile only requires a name, an icon picture, and optional links to Instagram and Twitter. However, it may be a good idea to add some more.
- Rooms: A room is where all the communication and interaction takes place. These rooms may be open to the public or private. Also, any user can create a separate room to start a fresh conversation with new people.
- Active Feed: In the Clubhouse app, the audio feed is where the users come across the active rooms and conversation topics that they have subscribed to.
- Audio Streaming and Calls: This is the most important app feature where the users can tune in to high-quality audio streaming and listen to thoughts on their chosen topics.
- Audio rooms based on Topics: The Clubhouse app offers a long list of topics for the users to choose from. Speakers allot topics at the time of creating rooms and the listeners can easily search for different rooms using these topics.
- Moderation to detect and prevent spamming: This is a vital feature that helps to identify and prevent spamming. Every room owner must be given some moderation rights so he can monitor user reports and ban rooms that engage in bullying or odium speech.
- Reminders/notifications: If you wish to build an app like Clubhouse where there are only live conversations that aren’t stored or recorded anywhere, you need a strong notification structure in place. These notifications will remind the users when a specific room is about to be opened for discussion.
- Settings: A settings panel helps to make the app customizable. Here, the users can choose any theme, set any preferred language of interaction, block users, set reminders, modify their followed topics, etc.
- Following speakers/topics: This is a valuable feature that enables the users to choose the topics that interest them the most. By following certain topics or speakers, they can learn about the latest upcoming discussions and participate in them.
- Audio-to-text transcription: This is an innovative feature that can take your audio-based app to another level and proffer exceptional user experience. The possibility to transcript the speaker’s voice into text can help users gain more from the discussion.
- Integration with smart speakers & devices like Alexa: An audio-based app must offer an option to connect with smart speakers or Alexa for an improved experience.
Cost To Make An Audio Social Media App Like Clubhouse
To develop an app like Clubhouse, you need to pay heed to several factors that affect the overall app development cost. Some of the common factors are:
- Backend infrastructure
- Complexity and app features
- Inclusion of visual element
- Technology stack
- Target audience
- Location of the app development company
For a social media app like Clubhouse, we recommend creating and launching a beta version of the app before the debut of a fully featured product. This makes it easy to measure the user’s feedback and adjust any features before the final product comes out.
It is advisable to sit with your app development team and create a list of features that you want for the initial version of your app. Based on that, it becomes easy to estimate the overall cost of app development.
For an MVP with core features, the developers in the USA and Europe charge around $150 per hour. Thus, the total cost to develop an app like Clubhouse will be approximately $200,000. This cost, however, may go up, if you choose to integrate high-end functionalities.
Hiring an offshore development company in India can be a suitable bet for both, Android and iOS platforms. This is because, in India, the cost of labor is approximately $50 to $80 per hour. So, an app with good features and functionalities will cost you around $80,000 in India.
To wrap things up, Clubhouse is a good app that has introduced a new segment of voice-based social network apps. The rising popularity of the Clubhouse app demonstrates how the right timing, correct investments, and vast tech community can turn a simple idea into a viral product.
This is an excellent time for future startup founders to invest in a similar app idea and launch their own product. Soon, Twitter, Facebook, and maybe a few more tech giants may join the bandwagon. So, it is best to start now and create your own audio-based app while the market is not saturated with dominating players.