Apps, Mobile & SMS

Spotify set to launch Clubhouse competitor

In an effort to maintain its dominance over the audio space, Spotify is apparently acquiring the company behind the rapidly growing Locker Room app, an audio based social network in competition with Clubhouse.

Guest post by James Shotwell of Haulix

Spotify continues its quest to dominate the audio space by acquiring the company behind the fast-rising Locker Room app.

The day we predicted less than a week ago has already come to pass. The Verge reports that Spotify is acquiring Betty Labs, the company behind the live sports audio app Locker Room. Details of the purchase are not available at this time.

As a result of the acquisition, Locker Room will stay live in the App Store but will be rebranded with a different name in the future on iOS and, eventually, Android with a broader focus on music, culture, and sports content. It’s clear that Spotify sees real-time audio interactions as the future of conversation online. A tool like Locker Room is perfect for hosting album premieres, conversations with fans, and breaking entertainment news.

Gustav Söderström, chief R&D officer at Spotify, tells The Verge that Spotify will let anyone host conversations — not just approved creators — meaning its app will directly compete with all of the various live audio apps currently on the market, including Twitter Spaces, Clubhouse, and Discord. Although he says Spotify-employed creators won’t be required to go live only on Spotify’s app, he thinks it’ll be a “great compliment” to their existing Spotify audiences. Still, the two apps will remain separate.

“But who knows,” adds Söderström. “Maybe we’ll integrate some of these features or all of these features in the future.”

Our YouTube channel, Music Biz, recently covered how a Clubhouse-like feature could benefit Spotify’s long-term goals of total audio dominance. Check it out:

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James Shotwell is the Director of Customer Engagement at Haulix and host of the company’s podcast, Inside Music. He is also a public speaker known for promoting careers in the entertainment industry, as well as an entertainment journalist with over a decade of experience. His bylines include Rolling Stone, Alternative Press, Substream Magazine, Nu Sound, and Under The Gun Review, among other popular outlets.

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