Spotify just purchased Locker Room — a rising Clubhouse competitor. Now that Spotify is entering the live audio game, here’s what to expect.
Spotify has announced that it’s purchased Betty Labs — the developers behind Locker Room — as the streaming company’s next big step in competing with Clubhouse. Clubhouse has become the go-to destination for live audio experiences, giving people a platform for hosting live conversations and allowing others to listen and join in to share their own perspectives. Since then, Clubhouse has faced stiff competition from Twitter, Wavve, and others trying to mimic its success.
It’s unlikely that all of these services will be able to catch on and draw the same audience that Clubhouse has, but that certainly hasn’t stopped them from trying. Especially as Clubhouse remains invite-only and still doesn’t have an Android app, now is the time for other companies to try stealing some of its spotlight.
In a somewhat surprising move, Spotify is now positioning itself as the next brand to do just that. Spotify announced in a press release that it’s officially acquired Betty Labs, which is the development team behind Locker Room. Locker Room is similar to Clubhouse in the sense that users can create live chat rooms, select certain people to talk to, and allow others to join as listeners. The main difference, however, is that Locker Room is designed to be a platform for users to discuss sports with fans, athletes, insiders, etc. As part of the Spotify deal, that’ll be changing. As noted by The Verge, Locker Room will eventually get a new name and expand to include conversations around music, culture, and more. An Android app is also in the works, though there’s no ETA as to when it’ll be available.
How Spotify’s Live Audio Feature Will Be Different (And Similar) To Clubhouse
At its core, Spotify’s vision for Locker Room sounds a lot like Clubhouse. While chat rooms with approved creators/influencers will be a big draw, anyone will have the ability to create and host their own room if they’d like. Not only is this how Clubhouse works, but it’s also the same setup for Twitter Spaces. Given that the main structure is identical, how is Spotify hoping to make its Clubhouse alternative stand out?
The main appeal with Spotify branching into the live audio space is how it’ll benefit creators that already exist on the streaming platform. As noted by Spotify R&D Officer, Gustav Söderström, Spotify may introduce new monetization features where certain chat rooms can only be accessed after paying a certain fee. Söderström also says that many people are currently uploading audio clips from Clubhouse and Twitter Spaces to Anchor (the Spotify-owned podcast hosting app), so there’s the possibility for deeper integration with Anchor and Locker Room that makes it easier for those conversations to be uploaded as a podcast.
There are still a lot of unknowns around Spotify’s future with Locker Room, but that’s not to say there isn’t a chance for it to be successful. Spotify is already the largest music streaming service on the planet, and that means the potential audience for its live conversations app could be enormous. Spotify has also made it clear that it’s staying in the podcast game for the long haul, and having a tool like Locker Room at its disposal should help to further that growth over the coming years. For Spotify users and creators alike, the next few months are going to be really interesting.
Next: Best Clubhouse Alternatives For Android (While It Remains Only On iOS)
Source: Spotify, The Verge
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