With the isolation by the coronavirus, group calls have become one of the best ways to alleviate loneliness. And the star application in this area is WhatsApp, a software that (almost) everyone has and that is very easy to use. Although, do you know how to get the most out of your group video calls? With our WhatsApp tricks it will not have any secrets for you.
Although the most common is to access written conversations, or send a voice note at most, WhatsApp is much more comprehensive when it comes to communicating. And group video calls are a clear example: with them you can see and listen in real time to several of your contacts. Simply put yourself in a conversation, and press the top icon of the video, so that the camera and microphone are automatically connected; transmitting to the other person what comes out of your phone while the same thing happens, and in the opposite direction, from the interlocutor. Not only that, you can also invite multiple people to set up a group video call.
WHATSAPP Tips and tricks to HIDE YOURSELF TO THE MAXIMUM and keep your PRIVACY
Video calls of up to four people
There are many instant messaging applications that have a call function and also a video call, as with WhatsApp: just open any conversation to discover the relevant icon at the top of the screen. Of course, each of the functions has its own shortcut: the call corresponds to a telephone; while the video call icon is a video camera. Clicking on the respective icons starts one or another function with the chat contact, always in individual conversations.
What do you want to start a group video call? You just have to do the following:
- Go to the WhatsApp group where the contacts you want to talk to in video and voice are located.
- Click on the call icon, at the top right.
- Choose the people in the group with whom you want to establish communication: you will see that you can establish a call or a video call, depending on the icon.
- Once the contacts have been chosen, click on the camera icon and the group video call will be established.
- You can choose anyone in the group, but only if you have them in your contact list: WhatsApp does not allow group video calls (nor voice calls) with unknown numbers.
With the above, you have everything you need to make group video calls with up to a maximum of four people, this is the limit imposed by WhatsApp. In case you need more you can always use other video calling applications; Although you can also delve into WhatsApp group video calls with some tips and tricks. We have summarized them below.
Add a new member to the group video call
You can establish a video call from a private or group chat, we have already explained how. Now: what if you need join a contact when the video call is in progress? No problem, just follow these simple steps:
- Open an individual video call with any contact.
- Press on the screen and you will see an icon with the figure of a person and a ‘+’ appear, at the top right. Click there.
- Choose a participant and confirm: they will be added to the group video call when they accept.
You can perform this action twice until you get one group video call of four. Afterwards, anyone can disconnect from the conversation: just hang up the video call. In addition, contacts can add another participant up to the quota of four; and we will not be able to disconnect anyone, even if we have started the video call: we can only hang up our communication.
Switch to another app without cutting off the video call
The fact that there is a group video call in progress does not mean that you have the impediment of not using another application since the mobile allows you to activate multitasking without losing audio or video. For it:
- When you press on the phone screen during a video call you will see a small arrow icon in the upper left. Click there.
- The video window will be made smaller to overlap the rest of the applications: you can use any app while the communication is going on.
- Switch to Twitter, Facebook, go back to WhatsApp or start Netflix: the video call will continue in picture-in-picture (PIP) mode.
- To return to full screen, you just have to click on the image of the video call and then on the square icon.
Reduce the cost of mobile data
Calls (and video calls) accumulate a large MB expense. It is best to use them only when we are connected to the WiFi network, but it is not always possible. And there is a small adjustment that facilitates a lower consumption of data in voice communications, it is the following:
- Go to WhatsApp settings (three dots from the top right).
- Go to ‘Data and storage’.
- Go to ‘Call settings’ and activate the ‘Decrease data usage’.
It is not a huge savings and is designed more for calls than for video calls, but it all ends up contributing. The best thing is that, if you don’t have too much data, restrict video calls to times when strictly necessary.
Switch to the rear camera
This is not in itself a trick as it is part of the usual functions of video calls, but you may not know it. Because how do you switch between the front camera (to focus on you) and the rear camera (to focus on what’s around you)? Easy:
- Press on the screen when you are in the video call.
- You will see icons appear at the bottom: click on the camera with the circular arrows. So you can swap the cameras to focus what you need.
Mute the video call or picture
During the video call, perhaps at some point you do not want to be seen or heard (also both, all without cutting off the communication). And you can do it very easily: just press on the screen and press on the camera icon to pause the video or on the microphone to mute the audio. Anytime you can recover either one by just pressing again.
See your image bigger
During a video call, the image of the caller will be played in large and yours in the small box. Now, it is easy to change the small box so that your video occupies the full screen. And it’s as easy as clicking on the small image: press once and the video will be exchanged between one size and another, so as many times as you want.
WhatsApp video calls on split screen
With the PIP or picture in picture it is possible to video call another person while using another application, but you may need to split the screen in order to make a group video call on one side and use another app on the other. You can do it like this:
- Open the WhatsApp application and click on the last open applications button on your mobile.
- It depends on your mobile, a general icon will appear to activate the ‘Split screen’ or perhaps the icon will appear on any of the open apps 8son two parallel rectangles). Just press the button and drag WhatsApp to the top of the screen and the second application to the bottom.
- Once you have the split screen, open the group video call on WhatsApp and use the other application as you wish.
Video calls are universal since they are suitable for any Android that can run WhatsApp (it must have a front camera, something that even the cheapest smartphones implement). They can be done with WiFi or mobile networks, they are suitable for up to four participants and average data usage is about 7MB per minute. The quality and the consumption depend on the stability of the network, also of the devices.