Facebook launches the public test of a Clubhouse-like app called Hotline

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Facebook started testing out a new app called Hotline on April 8th. Facebook Hotline is a platform where creators can speak to their followers and answer their questions from a Q&A. Reportedly, Facebook is eyeing the famous Clubhouse as its main competitor and the Hotline is supposed to give Clubhouse a tough competition.

Clubhouse is fairly new but its immense success in a very short amount of time with almost 10 million weekly active users has solidified its position as one of the most successful and popular audio chat services. Twitter had also joined the bandwagon of opening a new audio chat feature with its new feature called Spaces. Facebook’s Hotline comes from a small group within Facebook, called the New Product Experimentation (NPE) Team.

An official Facebook spokesperson said that the target audience of Hotline is different from what Clubhouse or even Spaces exhibit. The new Facebook app is aimed mostly at knowledge experts from various areas who could share their knowledge and expertise with different users. The app does not have any audience size limits. Hosts of each session have the ability to remove questions from the queue.

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The events hosted through Hotline will be recorded automatically and the hosts will get a copy of the recordings. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently spoke about the importance of the creator economy, which is to say, it is not yet clear if Hotline can be monetized by the creators. Furthermore, Facebook is also trying to keep inappropriate comments out of Hotline.

On the other hand, the Facebook NPE team is also testing a video app called Super where users can meet their favorite influencers to ask them questions and take a virtual selfie with them.

The new app Hotline is not a standalone app, and the team at Facebook is working to make it accessible through Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. 

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