26 Feb Deep Dive Into New Social Media Platforms
There are always new up-and-coming social media platforms emerging. While existing platforms work to change and evolve, new platforms try to fill holes in the field. We’re diving into a few promising platforms and apps that are poised to make a huge splash in 2021.
Caffeine.tv is a live streaming platform, used primarily for gaming and entertainment. Similar to Twitch, it is dominated by serious video gamers. In the short time since it was launched in 2018, Caffeine has secured investments from major corporations and netted deals with major celebrities like Drake to help it compete with powerhouse Twitch in the live streaming arena. For instance, ahead of the Super Bowl in 2020, Caffeine partnered with a handful of celebrities to host a stream that brought in attention and new users.
Caffeine has not yet gained enough momentum to come anywhere close to overtaking its primary competitor Twitch just yet, but it has been on an upward trajectory. Look for its popularity to continue to grow in 2021, and keep an eye out for new features and capabilities, as it tries to set itself apart from Twitch and become a force to be reckoned with in the gaming community.
Telegram has actually been around since 2013, but has been getting more attention, both positive and negative, of late. It is primarily a communication app, used for messaging and video calling. It offers encryption and “secret chats” that give it an edge over some of its competitors, such as WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger.
Telegram’s growth has skyrocketed in the past year, with the latest reports showing about 500 million monthly active users. With this growth, however, has come some scandal. With Parler’s recent woes, Telegram is one of many apps that has emerged as an alternative “safe haven” for extremist groups, who do not trust mainstream social media. Telegram has been trying to crack down on this trend, and ban any inappropriate accounts. If they are successful in this, Telegram could continue its growth in 2021 and become a major player in the messaging and communications field.
One of the newest platforms on the market, Clubhouse just launched in April 2020, and so has only existed in a pandemic-gripped world so far. A good deal of Clubhouse’s popularity thus far has come from the exclusivity it plays off of: it is an invite-only audio chatting platform, at least for now. The creators do plan to open it up to the public, although the exact timeline for that to happen is not yet known.
So if someone does manage to secure an invite, what can they do in Clubhouse? This app, more than many others on the market, actually mimics real-life interactions relatively well. There are a wide variety of “clubs” or “rooms” members can join to discuss a range of topics, and they are free to bounce around from one to the other, just like they would in a clubhouse or cocktail party setting in real life.
For now, it is mostly celebrities and the social elite who have managed to secure invitations and are making use of the Clubhouse platform so far. However, there is already a lot of intrigue and excitement built up around it, so if and when it does become more accessible to the general public, expect quick growth for Clubhouse.
Houseparty is a “face to face” social app that facilitates video calls amongst friends. The interface lends itself mostly to helping users find new and creative ways to interact with those they already know, as opposed to offering opportunities to meet and interact with new friends, like many other social media platforms provide.
In the Houseparty app, up to 8 users can interact at one time in a video chat format. There are also games and activities in the app that users can play together, which is an extra experience not offered by competitors like FaceTime and Zoom. Throughout 2020, with the pandemic raging and many people turning to virtual happy hours and game nights to stay in touched with their family and friends, Houseparty experiences something of a boom. Look to the app to continue this growth in 2021 and solidify itself as a major player alongside Zoom in the communications game.
Keep an eye out for these 4 social media platforms to make their move and really establish themselves in the mainstream in 2021.