Instagram takes on Clubhouse with audio-only live streams

(IANS) In a bid to take on invite-only audio chat app Clubhouse, Facebook-owned photo-sharing platform Instagram has introduced a new feature in its Live that allows users to turn off their phone’s camera when broadcasting.

The company is also adding the option to mute audio during a session.

Instagram explained these new features will give hosts more flexibility during their live stream experiences, as they can decrease the pressure to look or sound a certain way while broadcasting live, TechCrunch reported.

The company notes it tested the new features publicly earlier this week during an Instagram Live between Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Head of Instagram Adam Mosseri.

Instagram Live’s new features are now rolling out on both iOS and Android.

Facebook has also recently launched an experiment called Hotline that is a mashup of Instagram Live and Clubhouse.

The feature under test allows creators to speak to an audience who can then ask questions through either text or audio.

However, unlike Clubhouse, creators can opt to turn their cameras on for the event, instead of being audio-only.

This week, Instagram said that it is working on a suite of new tools to help influencers make money off its platform, including creator shops, affiliate commerce and a “branded content marketplace”.

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