Including a new Clubhouse competitor.
Facebook today has just announced that it has started rolling out a suite of new audio-based experiences for users. Highlighting the fact that audio is an integral part of communication, Facebook said that speech, sound, and language are the main reasons for people to connect with each other.
In line with this, the social media platform is introducing new way on how audio can be enjoyed by users and use it as a form of communication, even showcasing the voice messages and voice calling function already present on WhatsApp and Messager. They also highlighted the lack of ‘awesome’ audio content and that most of the time, the tools needed to create it are usually reserved for the professionals.
Facebook is introducing a new set of audio creation tools that utilize the power of AI that can be accessed through the main app. The features include speech-to-text and voice morphing complemented by a suite of various audio tracks, effects and filters that you can use on your story.
Along with that, the new tools will let you create Soundbites, which are short-form audio clips that let you record anything from jokes to anecdotes that can be shared on Facebook. Soundbites are currently being rolled out to a small number of creators before it rolls out to everyone.
Podcasts are also arriving to Facebook, where it is utilizing 170 million people that are already connected to podcast pages as well as 35 million people who are members of fan groups around podcasts. Listening to a podcast means you need to open another app that supports it, but you can soon enjoy the podcasts right from the Facebook app.
Live Audio Rooms is also coming to Facebook this summer. Competing directly with Clubhouse, Live Audio Rooms will let users engage around topics in a bid to bring meaningful conversations for everyone. Facebook is testing Live Audio Rooms in Groups first, which will make it available to more than 1.8 billion people who are using it every month. Along with that, Facebook is also looking to release Live Audio Rooms through Messenger in the summer.
Facebook will also let you turn live audio conversations into a podcast so others can also hear it later. Along with that, you can also take excerpts and use them as Soundbites that should help engage users for more discussions. To make it more accessible, captions will also be provided for all these audio-based features.
Lastly, Facebook is also enabling creators to monetize audio content to make money out of their efforts. Facebook will allow users to donate through causes during Live Audio Rooms and a new Audio Creator Fund will be introduced to kickstart Soundbites to support emerging audio creators.
“We’ve seen time and again just how much creative energy is liberated when you build powerful creation and editing tools, make them free and easy to use, and — with appropriate safety and privacy safeguards — put them out into the world. By bringing the magic to new audio formats, we’re giving people a new way to say more of what they’ve always wanted to say, this whole time,” Facebook explains in a blog post.
Expect these new audio features to roll out in the next couple of months.