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(Pocket-lint) - One of the latest must-have social networking apps is called Clubhouse. It launched as an invite and iPhone-only app and this gave it an air of exclusivity. Now it's open to everyone, the app allows you to host and join audio conversations with other users. 

What is Clubhouse?

Clubhouse launched in April 2020 as an iOS app. It is described as a "new type of network based on voice". It exploded in popularity after Tesla CEO Elon Musk appeared on the app, by joining the Good Time show, to talk about Mars, memes, and becoming a multiplanet species.

Since it's voice-only and doesn't use your camera, Clubhouse hopes you won’t worry about "eye contact, what you’re wearing, or where you are". You can use the app while doing whatever - whether you’re folding laundry or commuting - and because there's no typing and hitting send, all your intonation, inflection, and emotion should be accurately conveyed through voice.

It's the original medium, reborn, if you will.

According to The New York Times, as of December 2020, Clubhouse had 600,000 users. Since it was invite-only, you couldn't simply download the app from Apple's App Store and sign up. While you could install and open it, the app only allowed you to register interest and reserve a handle. From that point, it sent all interested users to a blog post detailing why they have to wait for an invite.

In May 2021, Clubhouse added an Android app and in July of 2021 opened its doors to the general public, no longer requiring an invite.

How does Clubhouse work?

Since Clubhouse is known for being a place to meet, talk, and share ideas, the app is pretty basic. It lets you create and join "rooms" - where you can chat with others in a conference call. You can't share pictures, videos, or even text. All you can do is talk. Users can join and leave the call at any time, too. When you open the app, you will see a list of “rooms” as well as a list of whose in each room.

You can join the room by tapping on it - they're all open for you to hop in or out. Clubhouse wants users to explore different conversations. You enter each room as an audience member. If you want to talk, you "raise your hand", and then the speakers can choose to invite you up. Clubhouse rooms are often hosted by experts, celebrities, venture capitalists, journalists, and so on. You can also create a room of your own.

Clubhouse says it hired moderators, too, to ensure that the platform is a place for free speech but also healthy dialogues.

How to join Clubhouse

It's easier than ever to get involved with Clubhouse. Simply download the app from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store and sign up.

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Writing by Maggie Tillman. Editing by Luke Baker.