Amazon has announced the closure of its live radio app Amp, which was introduced in March 2022 as a competitor to Clubhouse. The app allowed users to play DJ and provide commentary alongside playing tracks. However, after nearly 18 months since its launch, Amp failed to gain significant traction and only had around 700,000 monthly active users in July, according to sources.
The decision to shut down the app was made after careful consideration of the company’s future investments, as stated in an internal memo by Amazon’s lead for digital music, Steve Boom. Amazon denied the accuracy of the user metrics, claiming that they were inaccurate, but analytics company data.ai reported that Amp had 1.3 million lifetime downloads.
Last year, Amazon laid off nearly half of Amp’s staff during mass layoffs at the company. The app also struggled to attract users to sign up for Amazon, with the number in just single-digit thousands, according to documents seen by TechCrunch. Despite launching with shows from big-name artists and well-known personalities, Amp failed to maintain user interest post-pandemic.
The closure of Amp follows similar moves by other live audio platforms. Meta and Spotify both discontinued their real-time audio efforts last year, and Reddit shut down its live audio product Reddit Talk in March. Even Clubhouse, the company that popularized real-time conversations, is trying to revive user engagement by introducing chatrooms with asynchronous voice messages.
However, there may still be hope for some of Amp’s features to live on in Amazon Music. Bloomberg reported that Amazon plans to take learnings from the live-music community interaction on Amp to build fan experiences in its music platform.
Overall, the closure of Amp highlights the challenges faced by live audio apps in maintaining user interest and engagement. While the initial hype around real-time audio was fueled by the pandemic, it seems that the novelty has worn off, and companies are shifting their resources elsewhere.