WhatsApp now allows you to make video calls with your contacts. Here’s the definitive guide to video calling and how to reduce data usage.
After instant messages and voice calls, WhatsApp rolled out a new feature: the video call. As you may have noticed, there is a new video-calling button just beside the phone icon within chat screens. Once you click on it, a video call will start.
Just as it already happens on FaceTime and Skype, video calling someone even on the other side of the world is as easy as shooting fish in a barrel. All you need to watch out for is data usage, as WhatsApp video calls employ an Internet connection.
Here are some tips to better use the new feature of the most popular messaging services in the world.
How to make WhatsApp video calls
- On iPhone. In the upper right corner of chat screens, there are two stylized icons: a camera and a phone. Click on the first left icon to start a video call with your contact (and the second if you want to make a simple free call).
- On Android. Click on the phone icon in the upper right corner of any chat screen. Then, a pop-up will ask you if you want to make a voice call or a video call.
N.B. To use the video call function, you must have the latest WhatsApp update installed.
The main features of WhatsApp video call
- Do you want to show what’s around you to your contact? You don’t need to rotate your smartphone: just click on the camera icon that appears on the screen to activate the back camera.
- Video call yes, but silent? Easy: click the microphone icon which appears on the screen to mute it. It will be like going back to the time of silent movies.
Do video calls cost money?
Video calls are free as they use Internet data. However, you should keep an eye on your data plan to avoid any unpleasant surprises. If there are no Wi-Fi networks available, and you don’t want a video call to drain your Internet data, you can activate “low data usage” mode. To do so, open WhatsApp and go to Settings > Data and Storage Usage and toggle on Low Data Usage.
N.B. By activating the Low Data Usage mode, the video call quality may be affected.