Akash Pillai, a Pune-based software engineer recently joined the audio-only platform Clubhouse. "I work more than 11 hours everyday, it is physically and mentally draining. On the recommendation of a friend, I have joined Clubhouse app where I meditate along with 20k others."
Pillai says it doesn't matter whether the others are actually meditating. "The point is that we are together, and I don't feel alone," he adds.
Clubhouse is an invite-only social networking platform that allows users to exchange audio clips instead of images, videos or messages. The application has been developed by Rohan Seth and Paul Davison.
The app was launched on the Google Play Store in India less than a week ago on 21 May and has managed to cross more than one million downloads after making its long awaited debut.
Talk of The Town
Nelson Mark, 24, a musician and singer said that Clubhouse is useful for artists because it gives a combination of industry networking, live podcasts, that can help drive your music goals forward. "Its unique method of delivery using audio allows you to interact with fans, fellow musicians, or anyone else who wants to join the conversation."
He told The Quint that he has also started giving out free lessons on singing. "You can also use the platform to stream a live concert or play your latest idea for listeners. The app functions well for those wanting to avoid the visual aspect of live streaming that comes with other platforms. The only problem is that content is not recorded or saved."
While other social media platforms allow the user to interact via exchanging texts, photos and videos, Clubhouse focuses on interactions through ‘audio mode’ only.
Every room is supervised by a moderator so the content is filtered, unlike any other media platform. Besides, all the conversations are end-to-end encrypted and cannot be recorded, making the app secure for its users amid rising concerns of privacy.
'Learning & Business Made Easy'
Namdev Patil, a resident of Bhor, a village in Maharashtra said that he downloaded the app to learn English.
"I searched 'learn to speak English' and I found so many clubs. Since last two days at 7 pm everyday, we all get together and learn English together. The group compromises of 20 members for now. It's great to be able to speak and express myself, and the best part is that nobody judges," says Namdev.
Indian entrepreneurs have also flocked to the app with Indian founders such as Unacademy’s Gaurav Munjal, Flock’s Bhavin Turakhia, CRED’s Kunal Shah and leading venture capital investors building a base on the platform.
Namrata Yadav, owner of an online fashion store said that her sales increased after she connected with similar people on the app. "After listening to e-commerce experts, and connecting with similar-minded people about promotion, and influencer marketing my business has witnessed better sales."
Others, however, find the political discussions on the app subtle and civil. Harshada Jambhale, a student said that the discussions on politics are very civil, whether it's about farmers' protest or the new IT rules.
"Nobody rants or calls each other a 'bhakt 'or 'anti-national', we put forward our opinion and discuss, and if someone has to say something they raise their hands and then a moderator allows them to speak."
The company has said it plans to introduce a new payments feature on its Android app soon. On App store, Clubhouse has already crossed 10 million downloads since its launch in March 2020.