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Facebook starts rolling out Live Audio Rooms, Podcasts but there is a catch

After series of speculations, Facebook is finally rolling out Live Audio Rooms and Podcast.

Story highlights
  • Facebook has finally rolled out live audio rooms, podcasts.
  • The feature is being rolled out in the United States as of now.
  • For starters, Facebook is only giving the power to create Live Audio Rooms to Public Figures and select Facebook Groups.

After series of speculations, Facebook is finally rolling out Live Audio Rooms and Podcast. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg was rumoured to be working on the feature ever since he was found on the Clubhouse. So there have been many too many live audio apps already including Clubhouse, Spaces from Twitter and Greenroom by Spotify and more. Facebook's addition to the list would be a great tool for its users to host live talk sessions or music sessions with their friends. Along with the Live Audio Rooms, Facebook has also announced that it would roll out Podcasts.

Facebook has announced that it is rolling out Live Audio Rooms, but there is catch. The feature is being rolled out in the United States as of now. It is only limited to iOS users. For starters, Facebook is only giving the power to create Live Audio Rooms to Public Figures and select Facebook Groups.

" Today we're rolling out Live Audio Rooms and podcasts, as part of our plans to bring social audio experiences to Facebook. Public figures and select Facebook Groups in the US can create Live Audio Rooms on iOS, and select podcasts will be available to listeners in the US. In the coming weeks, we'll expand the ability for more public figures and Groups to host a Live Audio Room and introduce new features for both experiences in the coming months," Facebook said in a blog post.

Unlike other live audio apps like Clubhouse and Twitter Spaces where everyone can host live audio sessions, Facebook is only letting the public figures do so. However, users discover, listen in on and join live conversations with public figures, experts and others about topics they are interested in. The power to invite people to join in as a speaker lies with the host, but anybody can listen to the conversation, you would not require a link. Facebook's Live Audio Rooms will allow up to 50 speakers, but there is no limit to the number of listeners.

Specific Facebook Groups can also host live audio rooms but only the admins can control whether moderators, group members or other admins can create a Live Audio Room. In groups that are public, even visitors can listen to the Live Audio Room, but in private Groups, only members can listen.

Coming to Podcasts, Facebook has only added a handful of podcasts currently which will include Joe Budden of The Joe Budden Podcast; "Jess Hilarious" of Carefully Reckless from The Black Effect Podcast Network and iHeartRadio; Keltie Knight, Mecca Tobin, and Jac Vanek of the LadyGang; and Nicaila Matthews Okome of Side Hustle Pro. It plans to add more to the list soon.

Facebook in its blog has said that people can listen to podcasts while browsing Facebook, via a miniplayer or full-screen player experience with playback options, including with their phone display turned off.