Best Video Chat Apps
In the wake of Coronavirus, social distancing has taken people worldwide by surprise. Making new ways of socializing a necessity. Are you stuck at home due to Coronavirus? Use these best video chat apps to keep in touch with family, friends and your workplace.
Skype supports (iOS, Android, Mac, Windows, Linux and Web)
Pros: Many Simultaneous callers
It’s great for big groups
Cons: Tries too hard to do other things
Skype has been around for a long time, it has been one of the best video chat app for a while. Its desktop app is pretty weak, the mobile version is solid and it supports big groups with no real time limit (four hours per call, 100 hours per month), for free. As long as you focus on just the video calls, it’s great, Zoom.
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Supports iOS, Android, Windows and Mac
Zoom is one of the most popular business video conference apps out there due to its reliability, solid web integration and other features. Originally it was listed here as a good general-purpose option due to those pluses, but reports have multiplied that the software uses poor security standards and other shady practices.
FB messenger supports iOS, Android, windows and Mac OS.
Pros: Easy to use, many friends already on it, some handy group features.
Messenger is a popular app for good reason — it works well for pretty much every kind of digital communication you might want to do with your friends. It supports up to eight people in free video calls with no duration limit, and when you are doing a two-person call it switches to a peer-to-peer structure, skipping servers and potentially avoiding congestion. Of course, it’s also a Facebook product, meaning you’ll need an account there — not something everyone is into. But Messenger use is considerably better protected from Facebook snooping than posts and images on the main site.
Whatsapp messenger supports iOS, Android, Mac OS, Windows and Web
Pros: Secure and Popular,
Uses Personal phone contacts hence easy to connect
Cons: Only four people per video call
Think of Whatsapp as FB Messenger’s, less-good-looking sibling. With a focus on privacy, Whatsapp is popular around the world despite being super ugly, and while video calls aren’t its main feature, they are possible if you don’t mind a four-person limit. To activate it, start a group chat and then hit the call button at the top right and select the participants, then hit the camera.
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Google Duo or Hangouts
Google Duo Supports iOS, android and Web
Pros: Simple interface uses existing Google account
Cons: Confusing platform issues, Duo may not be long for this world
Duo is one of Google’s later messaging products, started as a complement to Allo and meant to be sort of the consumer version of Hangouts, which is being split into Chat and Meet, but still exists on its own. Confused? So is Google. But the apps work pretty well for now, plugging into your existing Google contacts and accounts and letting you do straightforward, unlimited video calls. If your friends don’t want to sign up for a new account anywhere, this is a good option — just don’t get attached, as unpopular Google products don’t tend to live for long.
Marco Polo App Supports Android and iOS platforms.
Pros: Video messaging is a fun alternative to live chats
Cons: No live Chat option
This isn’t a video chat app per se, but the fact is not everyone really wants to do a full-on live face-to-face video all the time. Marco Polo is like a streamlined Snap chat, sending short videos to friends or groups with the option to add doodles, filters and so on. If you and your friends are finding it hard to set aside half an hour to talk live, this can be a good alternative.
Houseparty Supports iOS, Android and the web
Pros: Simple drop-in, drop-out group chat, built-in games
Cons: Basically a Trojan horse for Heads Up, sudden popularity has affected video quality
Houseparty established its brand as the app teens were using to chat with groups of friends without leaving the house. Pundits disapproved, but as usual, the kids get the last laugh. Houseparty is nice for a group of close friends, alerting you when someone’s available and letting people easily join in the chat with minimal fuss. The built in games are also fun, but you’ll have to pony up for Heads Up decks. The Pictionary clone is fun, but desperately needs better words.
Discord Supports iOS, Android, Mac, Windows, Linux and Web.
Pros: Great for voice chat while gaming or simple occasional video chat
Cons: Occasionally confusing interface, not video-focused
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Discord is one of the best video chat app. It is the de facto champion for gaming-related communications, taking the place of many in-game chat interfaces and even schooling industry heavyweights like Steam. While it’s mainly focused on audio and does that well, video is an option too. Less savvy users may also find its interface confusing, with multiple tabs, groups and channels.
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