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General News: WhatsApp starts rolling out voice and video group calling feature - Printable Version

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WhatsApp starts rolling out voice and video group calling feature - nairrk - 06-20-2018

Facebook announced group calling features for WhatsApp at its F8 conference last month. While the feature was only limited for a very few users, the company is now rolling group calling support to a wider audience on both iOS and Android smartphones. On Android, the feature is only available for WhatsApp Beta users, while iOS users can get access to it through the latest update. Unfortunately, non-beta users on Android will have to wait for a final release, which might not be that far.

For now, users can use the group calling feature to talk to about 4 people at the same time. The feature looks simple and easy to use. To have a group call, you first need to start a video with one participant. The video call interface now carries an Add participant button at the right top corner, which you can click on to look into your contact list and add another participant.

The person on the other side will be notified of the call and the two participants who are already a part of it. WhatsApp only lets you add one person at a time, so you can only add the fourth person once the third participant accepts the call. Once all the participants are added to the video call, the display splits into four blocks for each member. Interestingly, non-beta version users can also be a part of the four-way group call. However, they will not have the option to add participants and can only join when invited by others.

Hopefully all users wouldn’t have to wait for a long time to try out group calling on WhatsApp. We anyway use the app for most of our communication. Having group calling would only complete that list. While it’s not as much as the 32 people you can call on FaceTime, it’s a great start. Besides that, there are plenty of other features Facebook announced at its F8 conference, related to stickers and new admin controls. You can expect all the features to come out soon with video calling.


RE: WhatsApp starts rolling out voice and video group calling feature - nairrk - 06-21-2018

WhatsApp Group Video, Voice Calling Out on Android Beta, Reported to Be Out on Windows Phone

[Image: whatsapp_group_voice_call_new_main_15295...ormat=webp]

WhatsApp is rolling out group video and voice calls on WhatsApp for Android beta and the feature is accessible in the latest updates - namely, v2.18.189 or v2.18.192. This development comes about a month after select Android beta and iOS users reportedly received the group calling functionality back in May in version 2.18.52 for iOS and version 2.18.145 for Android beta. Additionally, it is being reported that even Windows Phone has received group voice and video calling features. However, as before, the feature has not yet been officially rolled out but we could expect some updates from the Facebook-owned messaging app in the weeks to come.

As we mentioned, the group calling functionality is now accessible on the above-mentioned two versions of the WhatsApp for Android beta. It appears to be available to all users with access to these versions. To access, you will have to make a video or voice call. Once the call gets connected, an Add Person icon is shown on the top right, above the names of the recipient. Next, if the third user accepts the call, both the names will be shown with a comma separating them. To use the feature ahead of stable rollout, you can either register for the Google Play WhatsApp beta programme, or download the above-mentioned beta versions from APK Mirror.

While iPhone users can receive and be added to the group call, the ability to add other people is unavailable in our testing on the platform, though a report last month mentioned the slow rollout of this feature via a server-side update.

A tweet, with a bundled screenshot, from the WhatsApp beta tracker WABetaInfo suggests that group voice and video calls are also being enabled for Windows Phone. The feature has said to have started rolling out already, with most users expected to get it within the next few days. With this, WhatsApp becomes one of the rare few messaging platforms that are still continuing major features upgrades for Microsoft's yesteryear mobile platform.

First discovered back in October last year, group calling on WhatsApp was announced officially by parent company Facebook at its annual F8 developer conference in May this year.