Social media giant, Twitter Inc., is taking a first step towards monetizing its new Spaces feature, by letting hosts of audio shows on its network charge listeners a fee to tune in. The company also announced on Monday that Spaces is now being expanded to the Twitter app on Android devices as well, representing a vast expansion of the potential audience for the service.
Twitter Spaces, also known as audio rooms, is a feature that allows the user to host an audio conversation with other users on the social network. Even Clubhouse, the startup that inspired Twitter Spaces, has yet to widely release an Android app.
Jack Dorsey, Twitter Chief Executive Officer, has made live audio chat rooms a key product focus in recent months. Dorsey believes that Twitter’s future holds an important part for audio communication. The company tried unsuccessfully to buy Clubhouse for about $4 billion, Bloomberg News reported a month ago.
Spaces was a rapid response to that unsuccessful acquisition attempt. It was in beta testing for months. Now, through the iPhone or Android app, any Twitter user can listen to an audio discussion on Spaces, and users with more than 600 followers can host.
Twitter has informed that the ability to charge for tickets to a Spaces event will soon be available to some users and hosts can set the price and the number of tickets to be sold. Twitter will take a cut of these transactions, but we have not been informed of the percentage of the cut.
A security researcher, Jane Manchun Wong, discovered the company is also exploring letting Spaces hosts accept tips from listeners.
Clubhouse, which compared to Twitter, employs a tiny amount, is racing to keep its lead. The company delivered its own payments feature last month and announced on Sunday that it’s beta testing a long-awaited Android app.