Perhaps one of the more unintended consequences of GameStop’s (GME) stock debacle that started earlier this year is that far more eyes, criticism, and scrutiny fell on the Robinhood investor trading app. That has, in turn, forced Robinhood to re-examine much of its platform in order to shed said scrutiny. Part of that came pretty recently when the app removed one of its more notable confetti graphic features from the app. Robinhood says its part of an agenda to answer to “gamification” and refocus itself on the mission of democratizing of investment.
Robinhood’s removal of the confetti feature occurred in an update across all versions of the app fairly recently, as reported by CNBC and further explained in a Robinhood blog post. Where at one time, the graphic was meant to be used to celebrate various milestones with customers, Robinhood’s staff now says it has become a distraction that has led to criticism from users over a perceived “gamification” of investing. As the company gears up for an alleged IPO in the near future, it is reportedly looking to change further features that distract from its overall purpose and legitimacy.
Your financial journey is something to celebrate. Starting this week, you’ll see new designs marking milestone moments, like making your first investment, depositing money in your app, or signing up for Robinhood Gold. https://t.co/WR649EJO6Y— Robinhood (@RobinhoodApp) March 31, 2021
Indeed, Robinhood has run into several bouts of trouble with users recently, one of the largest of which was artificially limiting trade on GameStop stock when said stock skyrocketed into volatility thanks to the concentrated efforts of groups like r/WallStreetBets. It was also facing a lawsuit from the family of a trader who lost $700k and took their own life and faced further scrutiny in a recent US Congressional hearing over its part in the GameStop stock debacle.
With so much attention now on Robinhood ahead of its supposed public offering, there’s little doubt that the company has a vested interest in shedding drama and moving towards a more stable image. With that in mind, the removal of some confetti from the app is likely just the start of a few changes coming to the overall app’s appearance and functionality in the near future.