Instagram tries to take on Clubhouse with audio-only livestreams

You can now disable video during an Instagram Live session.


Facebook has introduced a new feature inside of Instagram Live that allows you to turn off your phone’s camera when broadcasting. It’s also adding the option to mute your audio during a session. The former is a small but meaningful addition that sees Facebook replicating functionality from Clubhouse in yet another one of its apps. The two platforms aren’t interchangeable with one another, at least not yet. You can’t join a conversation and start talking on Instagram Live in the same way you can on Clubhouse, but that may not be important to people looking to share audio-only broadcasts.

Facebook has a long history of copying features from competing apps, with several of the most notable examples living inside of Instagram. Stories, for instance, saw the company replicate most of what made Snapchat unique after Snap rejected its $3 billion buyout bid. You also don’t have to look far to find where Facebook got the idea for Instagram Reels. Of course, the company is far from the only platform to take a page from Clubhouse. We’ve seen companies like Twitter, Reddit and even Discord do the same.