Clubhouse Update: Meta Pulls the Plug on Audio

Meta has officially pulled the plug on its Clubhouse competitor. So, we wanted to see if the once-trendy drop-in audio app still had an audience.

Clubhouse had a moment back in 2020, when the invitation-only drop-in audio app garnered vocal support from a cadre of Silicon Valley insiders. With the imprimatur of folks like Elon Musk and Marc Andreessen, the app quickly ascended global charts. It reached the top spot, or darn near close, in dozens of countries around the world. It also generated hundreds of thousands of downloads per day, with a plurality coming from India, Iran, and other MENA countries.

Clubhouse was so successful in fact, that tech stalwarts like Meta and Twitter began playing around with similar features. For example, Twitter launched Spaces in November of 2020, while Discord and Telegram jumped into the fray with Stage Channels and Voice Chats 2.0. For their part, the company formerly known as Facebook announced a significant investment into audio in April 2021, which included not only a Clubhouse clone, but both short-form and long-form audio experiences as well.

Unfortunately, Meta’s audio gambit didn’t quite pan out. A few days ago, roughly one year after their initial announcement, the company pulled the plug on the project, raising questions about the long-term future of drop-in audio.

With this in mind, we wanted to check in on Clubhouse. We used our App Watchlist platform to analyze their download trends and top chart rankings to see whether the once-trendy app still had an audience.

Here’s what we found (click the links below to jump to the relevant sections):

Analysis of Clubhouse’s Performance

First, here’s a brief snapshot of how the Android and iOS versions of Clubhouse have performed over the last 30 days (April 4th, 2022 - May 3rd, 2022):

As you can see, the Android version has been downloaded approximately 283,000 times globally, whereas the iOS version has been downloaded roughly 682,900 times. Those are solid 30-day numbers, but certainly down a bit from their 2020 - 2021 peak.

Now let’s expand the scope a bit…

Downloads (January 1st, 2022 - May 1st, 2022)

Above you’ll find daily downloads for the iOS (in purple) and Android (in red) versions of Clubhouse. More specifically, this chart depicts global downloads between January 1st and May 3rd, 2022.

Overall Clubhouse’s numbers have been solid. They’ve combined for 4,259,828 downloads thus far in 2022. That’s just over 32,000 downloads per day since January 1st. The best single day for the Android version fell on January 28th, when it registered 39,499 downloads. For the iOS version, the best single day was February 12th, when it hit 31,994.

Top Chart Rankings (January 1st, 2022 - May 1st, 2022)

Next, let’s look at the top charts. In the graph above, you’ll find Clubhouse’s daily, category-specific rankings in the United States. In this case, the iOS version falls into the ‘News’ genre, while the Android version is categorized as a ‘Social’ app.

The iOS app has performed notably better. While it did not chart until mid-February, it settled quite comfortably in the top ten shortly thereafter. It typically floats between sixth and 11th and is currently, as of May 3rd, ranked ninth.

The Android app has struggled a little more. While it has been ranked in the top charts all year, it has been steadily losing ground since its mid-January peak at number 17. Currently, it’s ranked 48th among all ‘Social’ apps.

Final Thoughts

While Clubhouse has come down quite a bit from its lofty 2020 - 2021 heights (which you can read about here and here), the app is nevertheless chugging along quite nicely. It’s generating tens of thousands of downloads per day and still boasts solid usage numbers. Indeed, according to our data, the Android version alone has some 1.4 million monthly active users. Of course, that doesn’t put them in the same stratosphere as TikTok and Instagram, but it’s nothing to scoff at either.

In one sense, Clubhouse has become a victim of its own success. People think that, because they’re no longer the toast of Silicon Valley, they’re somehow fading into oblivion. So far, no such thing seems to be happening. Instead, they appear to be finding their level.

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