Since the lockdown began, video calls have been one of the great social trends, to the point that in many cases, instead of calling by phone or using voice calls from WhatsApp or Telegram, we now video call.
WhatsApp is a key player there, as one of the largest instant messaging applications in the world, and until now it allowed group video calls of up to 4 people, a limit that was fine at the time, but has become very old-fashioned as far as current needs are concerned.
For weeks, WhatsApp increased the limit on betas to 8 people, a very celebrated news for what the stable versions meant for the near future. Yesterday, the possibility of video calling up to 8 people reached the stable version of iOS (although not all users), and today, finally, it is reaching Android thanks to an update of the app in the Google Play Store. If it hasn’t reached you, you can install the APK file of the latest version by downloading it from its official website. To clarify, the version we need is 2.20.141 in the case of Android and 2.20.50 in iOS.
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How to easily start a group video call, on iOS and Android
The easiest way to make group video calls on WhatsApp is by taking advantage of calls to contacts of ready-made groups. Once we enter these groups, we will see a telephone symbol in the upper right, as shown in the screenshot. When pressed, a list of contacts from that group will open, which we can dial to start the video call or group voice call.
At that moment, We can select up to 7 people, since the eighth participant will be us, who initiated the call. In addition to this method, there is one that can be more direct, and the correct one if we want to talk to people who do not necessarily share a group. We will have to go to the ‘Calls’ section, where we will also find a telephone number in the upper right. By pressing it, we can choose the option of ‘New group call’, in the menu that opens from ‘New call’. When entering a new group call, WhatsApp will allow us to call 7 people by voice or video.
As we see, although applications like Jitsi Meet or Zoom make it very easy to call many contacts, nothing equals WhatsApp in this sense, whether we want to call groups or people who may not have any relationship with each other. Ideally, in the future these calls can be made from WhatsApp Web.