Twitter is already building up a competitor for the popular social audio app Clubhouse, but apparently it’s also being talked about outright about the company’s acquisition. Bloomberg reports today that Twitter held talks with Clubhouse about purchasing the app for approximately $ 4 billion.
These talks have reportedly stalled and it is unclear why. It’s also unclear whether Twitter or Clubhouse approached the other first, which could say how both platforms feel about the competition in the social audio space. Bloomberg also reported that Clubhouse yesterday is now watching to raise money worth $ 4 billion; it’s possible that number came from these Twitter discussions, or that Clubhouse is shopping that figure.
Clubhouse launched last year and popularized the idea of hosting live audio calls. Celebrities, tech CEOs, and everyday people have tuned and hosted rooms ever since. More than 10 million people have reportedly downloaded the app, which is currently invitation-only and on iOS.
The app also faces many competitors, including Facebook, Twitter, Discord, LinkedIn and Slack among others. These other platforms already come with built-in user files from millions of people, as well as fully-built web, iOS and Android apps. Yet Clubhouse tries to innovate at a rapid pace. It has been staffed for the past few months and has hired an engineer to build its Android app. It also launched tipping in the app this week as a way for creators to make money. (It says it won’t get a discount on that earnings.)
Twitter Spaces, for its part, has already launched on both iOS and Android. The company also plans to launch a web version this month and open hosting options to all users. Why Twitter would want to buy Clubhouse doesn’t quite make sense unless it just wanted to wipe out the competition and win over its dedicated user base and buzzing name. Regardless, Clubhouse and Twitter will now both continue to face each other in the journey to dominate social audio.