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Thursday, October 21, 2021

Spotify takes on Clubhouse with new live-audio chat app

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The application will focus on music, culture and sports conversations. 

In a move expected to dominate the entertainment industry, Spotify says it is set to launch a new live-audio chat app – similar to the recently popular Clubhouse – in the upcoming months. 

The music giant announced on Tuesday that it will be acquiring Betty Labs, the creators of the famous sports audio app, Locker Room to work on the new platform, which is expected to include a range of unique interactive audio features

Though it is expected that the application is quite costly,  Spotify fell short of disclosing how much it spent on the purchase. However, the Wall Street Journal reported that the deal values Betty Labs – which was founded in 2018 – at around $50 million. 

The company saw several dominant investors, such as Amazon’s Alexa Fund, Google Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners and Precursor Ventures, raising around $9.3 million, according to Crunchbase. 

“We are excited to join forces with Spotify and contribute to building the future of audio—we’ll invest more in our product, open the experience to Spotify’s audience, diversify our content offerings, and continue expanding the community we’ve built,” said Betty Labs Founder and CEO Howard Akumiah. 

“With Spotify, we’ll continue to offer the best home for sports fans and use the lessons we’ve learned along the way to create the ultimate destination for live conversation around music and culture.”

Launched in October 2020 for sports fans, Locker Room will rebrand with a broader focus on music, culture, and sports content. 

Read also: Apple rolls out update to fix major ‘hacking’ security flaw. 

The company says live audio is ideal for creators who want to connect with their audiences in real-time. 

“Creators and fans have been asking for live formats on Spotify, and we’re excited that soon, we’ll make them available to hundreds of millions of listeners and millions of creators on our platform,” said Gustav Söderström, Chief Research & Development Officer at Spotify. 

“The world already turns to us for music, podcasts, and other unique audio experiences, and this new live audio experience is a powerful complement that will enhance and extend the on-demand experience we provide today.” 

Read also: Procrastinating too much? Here are five apps to boost your productivity

Spotify also says that it will give professional athletes, writers, musicians, songwriters, podcasters, and other global voices opportunities to host real-time discussions, debates, ask me anything (AMA) sessions, and more, opening a new door for future creators.. 

Audio content has been on the rise recently.

Several live audio-platforms have gained enormous popularity because of their unique real-time interactive features , especially given that millions of people around the world are now working from home due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

It is still unclear whether Spotify’s new application will launch in the Middle East right away or will open in the United States first, but what we know is that it will be introduced to the region eventually. 


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