News & Events, Tech

After raging success, Houseparty is shutting down

Moving on to bigger things.

words by: Sahar Khraibani
Oct 8, 2021

Epic Games has officially announced that the group video chat app, Houseparty, will be shut down. The app, which gained so much popularity during the early days of lockdown in 2020, was one of the first social media platforms that hopped onto video chat features. According to Epic Games, the Houseparty app will be pulled from app stores “immediately,” however users who currently have it will be able to use it until the service is completely shut down in October.

 

Goodbye Houseparty

Houseparty was purchased by Epic Games in 2019 after being released by the creators of the popular Meerkat live streaming app in 2016. Epic Games claims that “tens of millions of people” have used the app. “The team behind Houseparty is focused on inventing new methods to conduct meaningful and realistic social interactions at metaverse scale across the Epic Games family,” Epic Games said in a statement.

 

This seems to imply that they are working on more social elements for games like Fortnite and Rocket League, which the Houseparty crew will be contributing to, and which might be crucial tools to keep players playing the constantly updating games. However, people who used Houseparty to talk with friends and family would have to relocate their conversations to another messaging app due to the approaching shutdown.

 

Official statement

In a statement on their blog, the app shared:

“Tens of millions of people around the world have used Houseparty to connect with their friends and family since the app launched in 2016. Today, we’re sharing that we’ve made the decision to discontinue Houseparty in October.

We do not take the decision to discontinue the app lightly. We created Houseparty to let people feel like they’re together even when physically apart, and we can’t thank you enough for turning to Houseparty for the important moments in your life. From birthday parties to proposals, marriages, family game nights and more, you did it all on Houseparty. And, in a year when we couldn’t be physically together, we’re even more honored that you turned to Houseparty to laugh, play games, and create memories while apart.

So what’s next? The team behind Houseparty is working on creating new ways to have meaningful and authentic social interactions at metaverse scale across the Epic Games family. Since joining Epic, the Houseparty team’s social vision and core technology have already contributed to new features used by hundreds of millions of people in Fortnite and by developers around the world. As a result, we can’t give the app or our community the attention that it deserves. While Houseparty may be going away, we hope that the memories you’ve made will last a lifetime.”

 

It is unclear as to why Epic Games decided to take this decision, but it seems that what’s to come will be just as timely and beneficial.

 

In related tech news, TikTok breaks down how their algorithm works and new inclusive emojis are on the way.

 

Photo via TechCrunch