Clubhouse is the latest app hype. The app is what is known as proximity chat where you can talk with all kind of people. Getting in is not that easy, because you can only join by invitation and only if you have an iPhone, no Android users can become members so far. Anyone who has made it in can then get two contacts, but only if they allow the app to access the phone book. Artificial scarcity is the name of this approach, which is popular with advertisers. You also vouch for the invitees.

So what can you do in the app? It’s simple: you can listen to live podcasts or start them yourself. Of course you can follow your contacts and be informed as soon as they speak somewhere. Either you join such a podcast or you use the suggestions that Clubhouse makes on the basis of your interests. If you want to talk, you can raise your hand.

Privacy? Well, not really

All conversations are recorded, of course for security reasons. Clubhouse also justifies this with the fact that they are podcasts. On top of that the Clubhouse app asks for all kind of permissions collects everything that is possible: location, device, etc. Their privacy policy states: “We collect content, communication and other information that you give us, including when you registered and when you created content and shared as well as with whom and what you communicated.”

Investors like Clubhouse

Venture capitalist Andreessen Horowitz invested twelve million US dollars in Clubhouse last May. This gave the company valuation of 100 million US dollars – with a userbase of just 1,500 users. However, the data that has already been collected alone should be worth the money.

Will Clubhouse become the next big thing? It’s difficult to tell, because you find exciting conversations or interesting people to follow on other platforms. In the USA the hype has flattened a little, while in Europe it just has started.

Air Pod Max Ear Computer

It could be still an interesting hint of things to come. Apple has basically built a computer that you can put on your ears with their new Air Pod Max. For the time being there are no specialized apps available. But remember: it took a while for Apple watch standalone Apps that don’t require an iPhone companion app.

I wouldn’t be surprised if we see at this years’s WWDC tools for developers to build just this kind of apps for your ears. Then, an app like clubhouse can be quite interesting, with their focus on voice conversations.

Photo by Jacob Bentzinger on Unsplash

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