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Facebook introduces new audio features to compete with Clubhouse

Facebook has introduced a new set of audio features to help it compete with Clubhouse. The features include audio-only “rooms” for live chats, as well as “soundbites,” for sharing short voice messages, and a new podcasting feature. These features have yet to launch, though audio rooms will be available by this summer, Facebook said.

Facebook refuses to fall behind the curve, and its upcoming updates demonstrate that. In a post on the About Facebook blog, Facebook announced several new audio-based ways to communicate on the platform.

Live Audio Rooms is but one audio-only feature that Facebook is exploring. So far, it’s shaping up to be a lot like Clubhouse, as it will let users take part in live audio chatrooms.

Facebook will begin testing Live Audio Rooms with Groups and public figures, giving users the chance to “share ideas with new audiences and create a forum for discussion, without the added pressure of being on camera.” It plans on officially launching the feature on Messenger this summer.

Facebook is also introducing Soundbites, which it describes as “short-form creative audio clips for capturing anecdotes, jokes, moments of inspiration, poems, and many other things we haven’t yet imagined.” The platform will begin testing the feature in the coming months, starting with a small group of content creators.

Soundbites will appear in your News Feed, and will be recorded with Facebook’s new built-in sound studio. Here, you can add background music, mix audio tracks, and even add voice effects, allowing you to make your Soundbite all the more engaging.

To attract creators to Live Audio Rooms and Soundbites, Facebook is offering some financial incentives. Creators will be able to monetize their Live Audio Rooms, giving them the chance to be compensated through Room access fees, subscriptions, and tips from fans. Facebook is also launching an Audio Creator Fund for those interested in creating quality Soundbites.

Facebook is even taking on podcasts. In the next few months, you’ll be able to listen to podcasts through Facebook, even if you have the app running in the background.

Facebook is far from the only platform experimenting with social audio. Twitter has been testing audio-only Spaces for months, and Reddit just previewed its own version of the feature called Reddit Talk.

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