WhatsApp video calling support is rolling out to a billion+ users in the ‘coming days’
While Google has basically separated its Hangouts communication features into two new apps recently, keeping Allo focused on text and Duo on video chat, Facebook wants both its own-brand Messenger service and 2014-acquired WhatsApp IM client to do it all.
The latter debuted back in 2010 with only fundamental text messaging support in tow, gradually growing to integrate Group Chat and voice calling functionality into its still very basic, very simple cross-platform UI.
After over a year of speculation and closed beta tests, WhatsApp Video Calling is now also rolling out to its “more than one billion users” across Android, iPhone, and Windows Phone devices. That’s pretty much all you need to know, as Facebook isn’t looking to clutter the encrypted instant messaging app with any other fancy new bells and whistles.
The video call initiation and termination buttons are easy to locate, and overall, there’s nothing to confuse even the most inexperienced smartphone user. WhatsApp wants to “make these features available to everyone, not just those who can afford the most expensive new phones or live in countries with the best cellular networks” so you can watch “your grandchild take her first steps, or see your daughter’s face while she’s studying abroad.”
Pretty noble goal, but you’ll still probably need a reliable network and decent phone to enjoy a smooth, crisp video chat.