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Clubhouse launches its DM feature Backchannel

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Never leave the app

Backchannel, Clubhouse’s messaging feature
Image: Clubhouse

Now, you can slide into people’s Clubhouse DMs. The social audio company is launching its direct messaging feature, Backchannel, today for all users on both iOS and Android. For now, users can chat one-on-one, in groups, and send links. They cannot yet send images or videos, but a spokesperson says that functionality is coming, along with a “few other features.” There will also be an optional secondary inbox where message requests will live.

The functionality is designed to help moderators chat among themselves during an active room; let people connect after an event; and broadly, foster text conversations that otherwise would have to take place in a separate app. We can’t say this development is much of a surprise, though: Clubhouse accidentally leaked the feature in June.

Still, this is a critical development for the app, which the company now says has been downloaded over 8 million times on Android devices with more than 500,000 rooms created daily. Its competitors, notably Twitter Spaces and Facebook Live Audio Rooms, both allow people to text chat while also running or participating in an audio conversation, so Backchannel brings Clubhouse more up to par and ensures users keep their conversations, and more of their social life, on the app.