Not all networking and entertainment can be taken care of using Gmail and Facebook. Especially when it comes to internet calling; both Google Hangouts and Facebook video calling are terrible. They are slow, often buggy and in general, painful. But it doesn’t have to be this way.
Fortunately, there are quite a few options we have to free video call our family, friends and business clients, using nothing more than the smartphones we carry. But the variety and the amount of marketing in the app market can make things hard to figure out. So we decided to rank some of our favorite, most frequently used apps in order of how emphatically we can recommend them. Read the list and our reasons below.
Google Duo just completed a year on the market, and the reception it has received in these past 12 months testifies to how amazing this app is.
The first feature that grabs your attention is the call preview also called the Knock Knock because it lets you know who is calling and what for before you attend the call. Things like switching off the video feed or muting audio are available in a slightly different format than usual, but it actually makes things easier. That’s why we rank it at the very first position in our list.
The reason we love Whatsapp is simple; everyone has it! The app is free to use and was purchased by Facebook for $19 billion! The classic green icon is well recognized, and after the end-to-end encryption that was recently added to the chats, the app is more secure than ever.
Chat with people over text, and using just a single button, you can video or voice call them over the internet. Call quality has also come a long way since the initial days on Whatsapp video calling, and that improvement makes it worthy of the second position.
Apple’s Facetime has been a constant in the world of video calling. Introduced as long ago as 2010, the app has glided to the ranks of a phenomenon that have defined the post-internet generations. The video calling and voice calling have an interesting quirk in the latest iPhones. You need only tap a button on your voice call to convert it into a Facetime session.
There is zero lag and minimal interruption or pixelation, which is an astounding feat to achieve, especially in the global calling sphere. Things have been largely static with the app lately, though, and the removal of the audio jack from the latest devices does pose its own problems. But it can be sideloaded to a PC (In fact, here’s a brief method to get Facetime for PC). That’s why, it must place on position number three on our list.
Everyone was skyping when the world still ran on Windows PCs and Macs. Then iPhones came and people ditched the app to facetime. Android routed much of the remaining traffic, and the program lost the glory it once had. Skype’s arrival as an app didn’t get a lot of attention, but it is inching closer to its previous coveted stature in the industry.
Skype’s texting feature needs some improvement and the app in general needs some glamming up, but it’s not something that should make us put it anywhere under fourth.
I have been using Viber for about 2 years now. What attracted me was the risks the developers took in their design. And the doodle pad. Viber’s voice and video calls are pretty cool. Voice calling especially gives sharp and clear results.
The app also has some really fun elements in the texting feature. The only complaint is that the risks might be one too many for a lot of people. So even though we enjoy using the app, we’re going to place it at number 5.
Tango is somewhat less known, at least as compared to the other apps on the list. But don’t think for a minute that it doesn’t have plenty of users. In fact, these people form the major focus group of the social media app Fiesta that the makers of Tango launched not long back.
The 200 million users enjoy video calling, voice calling, texting and even fun interactive games on the app. It has support for Gfycat. It even lets you edit photos using Aviary’s many features. It is simple, efficient and neat. Definitely, deserves to be on our list.
We often hear about Telegram being touted as the perfect alternative to Whatsapp. It is certainly nice, and yes, it is free. But it isn’t Whatsapp. Not after Whatsapp introduced E2E encryption too. But there are definitely advantages to Telegram other apps are yet to come up with.
The hidden chats are definitely one. As are timed chats and self-destructing media that ensure sensitive stuff you share with someone cannot be replicated or passed along to someone else. Telegram has some really cool video and voice calling features as well. You should definitely try this app out as well.
Saurabh Mukhekar is a Tech Blogger from Pune, India. He is also thinker, maker, life long learner, hybrid developer, edupreneur, mover & shaker. He’s captain planet of BlogSaays and seemingly best described in rhyme.
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