“It’s good for social audio to get more people involved in social audio,” Maya Watson, Clubhouse’s head of global marketing, said in an interview. “We’re not bothered by that, and, if anything, it reassures us where we’re headed.”
At the beginning of the year, the clubhouse was booming. In February, the app was downloaded 9.6 million times, Sensor Tower said. A Clubhouse spokesperson disputed the accuracy of Sensor Tower’s metrics, which gauge user behavior, but said the company would not provide internal statistics.
The app caught the attention of audio creators like Brian McCullough, who hosts a podcast for news aggregator Techmem called “Techmem Ride Home.” “I remember having the best social media conversation in 10 years,” McCullough said of his early days at the clubhouse.
Through the app, he is joined by Chris Messina, who leads West Coast business development for Republic, a platform that allows companies to raise capital and unaccredited investors to invest in start-ups. Mr. Messina made it a habit to record snippets of Mr. McCullough’s shows and play them in the clubhouse so he could answer them, and the pair decided to start creating a podcast together.
But in March, Clubhouse experienced a slowdown as downloads dropped to 2.7 million, and in April the app was downloaded just 917,000 times, Sensor Tower said.
At the same time, Twitter was aggressively expanding the space. It began testing the feature in October 2020 and rolled out access to a wider swath of users in the spring. At the time, the development of the space was a top consumer product priority at the company, said a person familiar with the company’s plans, who was not allowed to speak publicly about them.
That work began to pay off. As of May, Spaces had more than a million users, the person said. The Washington Post previously reported this figure.