The renaissance of mobile room-based video chat applications has largely passed, with even Facebook deciding their clone didn't need to stick around. One of the original players, Houseparty, has managed to continue running. In fact, today the app was acquired by video game giant Epic Games.
"Houseparty is the synchronous social platform that lets you connect face-to-face with the people you care about most," the team wrote in a blog post. "By teaming up with Epic, creator of Fortnite and Unreal Engine, we’ll be able to help even more people connect with their friends, family, and peers." The post confirmed that there won't be any immediate changes to Houseparty, and accounts will not be merged with Epic Games accounts.
The announcement was light on details about why exactly Epic was interested in Houseparty. Epic's smash-hit game Fortnite has become a massive social space for a young audience, so perhaps the company is looking to improve that aspect of the game. Epic is also in the midst of building an ecosystem around the newly-released Epic Games Store, and some of its competitors (like Steam and Discord) already have integrated chatrooms.