Right after Facebook-owned WhatsApp released free voice calling for iPhones, Facebook adds free video calling service to its popular Messenger app. The new feature not only allows you to call for free over data connections but also have face-to-face conversations with your friends on Facebook.
You can quickly start a video call from any Facebook chat conversation with just one tap. A video icon in the top right corner of the screen lets you start a video call from within an existing Messenger conversation. Once in video call mode, the smartphone’s front camera will fire up, showing your face (or whatever it is you want to show) to the friend you are calling. To switch to the rear camera, simply hit the camera view mode icon on the top right of the screen. If you are familiar with Apple’s FaceTime, the video call basically works exactly the same way.
But unlike FaceTime, which only allows you to call fellow iPhone or iPad users, Facebook Messenger app works with both Android and iOS devices. So as long as you are on Facebook and have downloaded the app, you can video call each other. The only caveat is that both of you will need to be logged into Facebook for it to work.
Video calling in Messenger is currently available to most iOS and Android users in Europe and the US. Users in Asian countries like Singapore, Thailand and Philippines can now use the Facebook Messenger app for only free voice calls. Facebook said that they will be rolling out its video calling feature to the other regions over the next few months.