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Clubhouse may be expanding beyond audio-only communication

The voice-based social media platform, which is already valued in the billions, has been under pressure to build its services quickly for some months now. (AP)Premium
The voice-based social media platform, which is already valued in the billions, has been under pressure to build its services quickly for some months now. (AP)

  • An update received by some users seems to have introduced a new feature called “backchanne”, which essentially adds a chat platform within the app.
  • The addition to Clubhouse’s interface appears momentarily and has since disappeared from the app.

After making a name for itself for being an ‘audio-only’ platform, Clubhouse seems to be adding more communication methods. An update received by some users seems to have introduced a new feature called “backchanne", which essentially adds a chat platform within the app. The addition to Clubhouse’s interface appears momentarily and has since disappeared from the app, prompting speculation that the feature may have come live as a result of the mistake.

It’s worth noting though the Backchannel feature didn’t actually show texting tools, so it’s more of an assumption that the feature is meant for texting. However, it has previously been discussed by the platform’s chief executive, Paul Davison, during a town hall. He had recognized that “DM (direct message) backchannels" is something that people do want. Many Clubhouse users too have been looking for more ways to communicate one on one with users.

A Clubhouse spokesperson told TechCrunch that the feature that some users saw was part of “potential features" that the company “explores". However, they didn’t confirm whether backchannel would actually become a feature in Clubhouse in the future.

The voice-based social media platform, which is already valued in the billions, has been under pressure to build its services quickly for some months now. Rival Twitter has been adding features to its Spaces platform, while the world’s largest social network, Facebook, introduced its own version of Clubhouse less than a week ago. Facebook has also added a full suite of audio-based development tools for creators, which gives it a distinct advantage over itcompetitors.

Clubhouse had also extended its Creator First program to India last week, offering creators funding, production support and more, to build content for the platform.

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