Clubhouse is a social audio app for iOS and Android where users can communicate in audio chat rooms that accommodate groups of thousands of people.

Clubhouse led to the emergence of a new social media segment known as social audio or drop-in audio. Soon realizing the potential of this segment, a handful of companies came out with their social audio solutions as standalone products or as an expansion to their current products. Clubhouse being the pioneer in this segment, all competitors eventually adapted its features to their products.


Clubhouse began as a social media startup by founders Paul Davison and Rohan Seth in Fall 2019. Originally designed for podcasts under the name Talkshow, the app was rebranded as "Clubhouse" and officially released for the iOS operating system in March 2020. Clubhouse was valued at $100 million after receiving funding from notable angel investors, including Ryan Hoover (Product Hunt), Balaji Srinivasan (Coinbase), James Beshara (, and several venture capitalists, including a $12 million Series A investment from the venture capital firm, Andreessen Horowitz, in May 2020.

The app gained popularity in the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic and had 600,000 registered users by December 2020. In January 2021, CEO Paul Davison announced that the app's active weekly user base consisted of approximately 2 million individuals. The company announced that it would begin working on an Android version of the app. In that month, the app became widely used in Germany when German podcast hosts Philipp Klöckner and Philipp Gloeckler started an invite-chain over a Telegram group, bringing German influencers, journalists, and politicians to the platform. Clubhouse also raised their Series B at a $1 billion valuation.

On February 1, 2021, Clubhouse had an estimated 3.5 million downloads globally and grew rapidly to 8.1 million downloads by February 15. This significant growth in popularity occurred after celebrities such as Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg made appearances on the app. In that month, Clubhouse hired an Android Software Developer. A year after the app's release, the number of weekly active users was greater than 10 million, but the user base declined 21% during three weeks from late February to early March. The decline is reportedly caused by a decrease in the number of Clubhouse users after its initial release. During its initial rollout, the app was accessible only by invitation, and invitation codes on eBay were selling at up to $400.

On April 5, 2021, Clubhouse partnered with Stripe to launch its first monetizing feature called Clubhouse Payments. Although testing began with only 1,000 users, after a week, the company rolled out the functionality to another 60,000 or more users in the US. In the same month, Twitter had entered discussions to purchase Clubhouse for $4 billion. The talks ended with no acquisition. Later, the company raised their Series C round of funding at a $4 billion valuation. The app also received interest in a partnership, with the National Football League announcing a content deal that month. On May 9, 2021, Clubhouse launched a beta version of the Android app for users in the US, and on May 21, 2021, Clubhouse became available worldwide for Android users.

In July 2021, Clubhouse announced its partnership with TED to offer exclusive talks. and on July 21, 2021, the company discarded its invitation system and made the application available to all, though a waitlist for registration is still applied as user accounts will be created over time to manage new traffic. As of the time of the announcement, the company stated it had 10 million users on the waitlist. On September 23, 2021, the company announced a new feature called "Wave." In October 2021, Clubhouse rolled out new features called "Replays and Clips". In April 2022, the company rolled out a new dark mode on its iOS and Android apps.


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Alena Potapova

Development Director
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