In a room with no smart speaker, Alexa can’t hear you scream in 2021

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Alexa can’t hear you

https://equity.simplecast.com/episodes/in-a-room-with-no-smart-speaker-alexa-cant-hear-you-scream

Hello and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture capital-focused podcast where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines. Today’s theme of our podcast: Alexa can’t hear you scream.

For this week’s deep dive Natasha and Alex and Danny and Chris dove into the world of audio. Sure, you’ve heard of Clubhouse, but there’s lots more going on than just a single app’s cultural rise. So from the biggest companies to niche startups, we compiled all the recent audio news into a single show for all our delectation.

Here’s the rundown:

  • Facebook is building a number of audio products, including a Clubhouse clone and a short-form audio service that we think could be neat.
  • Reddit is also building a Clubhouse-like service, and Alex is excited about it.
  • It’s not just the established social networks that are trying out-live audio. Peanut, a social networking app for women, added live audio “Pods” to its platform. It kicked off a conversation on what it takes to win this market, and what’s a smart versus silly bet.

Social networking app for women, Peanut, adds live audio rooms

  • While a drop in downloads doesn’t necessarily mean a drop in active users, it’s worth pointing out that Clubhouse’s monthly downloads dropped 72% in March. Where is that gosh-darn Android app?
  • And Alex explained why the Clubhouse-NFL deal matters for the company, as it could molt into something more akin to a platform over time.
  • Danny explained how Apple and Spotify are building paid podcast services — more here, and here, respectively — and we have thoughts about which service is being more fair with the money. Natasha tied in how sentiment around the creator economy might be driving some of these individual-friendly business models.
  • Alex brought up TWiT’s new business model.

All told there’s quite a lot of excitement around the spoken word. Which is good, as Equity is a podcast? Right?

Equity drops every Monday at 7:00 a.m. PST, Wednesday, and Friday at 6:00 AM PST, so subscribe to us on Apple PodcastsOvercastSpotify and all the casts!

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