Thanks to smartphones and computers, keeping in touch with loved ones and colleagues has become even easier. All you need now is a smartphone, a mobile Internet connection, and in a couple of seconds the person we need is already on the screen. There are many messenger variants for text and video communication, and everyone can choose a format that is convenient for him or her.
Popular applications for communication
The following is a list of applications that are popular around the world, and you probably have heard of them (and even use them). Detailed information about the functionality of the applications will help you to decide and choose the most suitable among them.
One of the most popular messaging applications in the world. Not least because it is integrated with an active social network. The messenger is free and supported by almost all mobile platforms, including Android, iOS, Blackberry, Windows Phone as well as regular Windows.
The application includes all users who are registered on Facebook, and you can call any of them, if he is currently online. The functionality is clear and simple: you can write and call, add graphics, photos and videos, create personal and group audio and video chats, etc. A simple interface, handy feature set and concise design make the application very popular. But, with such a set of features and a huge number of downloads, many users complain that the application consumes a lot of battery power and collects personal information.
The only drawback is that the user you’re communicating with must be a Facebook member.
This messenger is one of the most popular in the world for text messaging (according to statistics – the application has over a billion active users). At first, the text format of data exchange was the main, but after the purchase of the application by the Facebook team, new features were added. Since then, developers have integrated voice calls, video calls, chats, conferences and many other features. WhatsApp allows you to send text messages, pictures, videos, audio, electronic documents and even software installations using Wi-Fi or mobile Internet.
The quality of video calls is at a good level, so it’s easy to use. Separately, the level of end-to-end data encryption is worth noting, but not all users trust it, because it is part of Facebook (it is known that the social network collects data about users to conduct their advertising activities).
Nevertheless, if you are just looking for a program for quality video communication – be sure to install WhatsApp and use it with pleasure.
Viber was originally supposed to be a competitor to Skype. The developers made it lightweight and easy to use on mobile platforms and it quickly became popular. In addition, just like Skype, it has the ability to make paid calls to regular phone numbers. At the initial stage Viber was designed specifically for voice communication, not for correspondence, that’s why a special technology was implemented, which allows even with a low speed internet connection to get a good quality connection. The application works together with the mobile number using a list of contacts from the phone book.
The application is actively developing and in the near future the developers plan to add to it several simple games. Viber is great for both personal and business use, and a huge bonus is not only its free and stable work with different signal levels, which gives the mobile Internet.
Of the disadvantages, you can note the overload of ads and secondary functions (groups, communities), which is very distracting for users.
This is not only one of the “youngest”, but also one of the simplest and most secure cross-platform messengers. And this is understandable, because the speed and usability of the application is at a high level. Telegram loads much faster than most messengers, and the interface is self-explanatory. There are two official versions of Telegram (for iOS and Android), but there are also about 10 additional versions, which allow the messenger to be used on PCs and tablets. There is a whole range of settings for the client: it is possible to set timers to delete correspondence and a password to open conversations.
Telegram offers a lot of options for communication, from a blogging platform and ending with supergroups of up to 5 thousand users, chatbots and even audio calls.
Of the disadvantages, users highlight the connection to the phone number (this is the only possible option for accessing the application). But, you will always be able to hide your number in your personal profile, and communication will only take place using your nickname.
Google Hangouts is a mobile application from Google especially for Android users, but you can also use it on iOS and Windows. The program works as a messenger, and can make video calls, and even arrange video conferences for a group of users. The list of contacts of the application is integrated with the phone book of the owner, and contacts from the address book of Google can also be used. Simple and clear interface, concise design and limited number of functions, so that nothing distracts from the main task: to give the opportunity to make voice and video calls, as well as to exchange data.
The application became convenient due to the perfectly developed system of synchronization: the user always continues correspondence from the place where he finished last time, and it doesn’t matter what device is used for this purpose – smartphone, tablet or desktop computer. If you need to call someone who is not online, the app will offer to call them directly on their cell phone (you only need to top up your balance).
Apple’s patented video chat app is still one of the most popular video chat apps on the market. Available only to iOS and MacOS users, the simple FaceTime interface lets you make quick video calls over Wi-Fi or mobile internet.
If you’re an iOS user, you can call FaceTime right from your phonebook. With the release of iOS 12, the company introduced a bunch of great new features, including FaceTime group calls and the ability to overlay Animoji and Memoji over your face during calls. Like all Apple products, the interface of the app is as simple and user-friendly as possible. The picture quality is at a high level, since this is the main function of the application. By the way, users say the app works well with unstable mobile internet signals.
The real advantage of FaceTime: It’s already integrated into iOS and doesn’t require any additional software or additional settings.
New additions to communications apps.
In addition to messengers, which everyone knows, there are apps that are not as popular, but do an excellent job of voice and video communication with friends, family, colleagues (if there is Wi-Fi or mobile Internet). They all have features – below is a small selection and information.
This application is available not only for users of popular modern mobile OS, but also supports work on old smartphones Nokia, there is its Java-version, well, and about the work on stationary devices not worth mentioning. In general, if your smartphone does not support any of those services that are listed above and below, it is worth to try Nimbuzz, and when downloading will prompt you which version you need, if you do not even know what platform your gadget works on.
The functionality of the application is wide, but still it can be called standard: you can call within the application, create chats, share photos, videos and music, and for a fee you can also call any landline or mobile number.
And in order to integrate as many contacts as possible into the application, you can use not only the phone book, but also a list of friends from Facebook and Google+. Convenient and simple application, with the task of “chatting with video” copes perfectly.
Discord is a unified cross-platform VoIP text and voice chat, free, secure and designed specifically for gaming communication. But, any user can install Discord, always be in touch and communicate with like-minded people on any topic. The application allows for two-factor authentication to protect the account, supports “Streamer Mode”, which hides information about the client, and the encrypted server hides the IP address (excludes the possibility of DDoS attacks).
Of course, the application is mainly focused on group chats, DM and voice chats for gamers. But, the functionality for messaging and video chats is there, so you can consider this app as one way to communicate. Of course, your contact must be registered in the application and use Discord, but in general the quality of the application and its functionality will pleasantly surprise.
Of the disadvantages: the application has a closed source code and there is no portable version of the program. And still, the application is oriented to gamers.
Google Duo is essentially Google’s answer to FaceTime. Users say it’s the easiest app to video chat with. You have to sign in, confirm the number, and access all the functionality. As soon as you turn on the app, it automatically turns on the front-facing camera. Google Duo is a cross-platform app that works on iOS and Android. The developers promise that a web version will be available soon. Shopping is in the app, but only for emoji and stickers.
Duo’s cool feature is Knock Knock. It turns on the caller’s camera before the call is answered so you can always see who is calling. If you are calling, it gives you the opportunity to prepare yourself before the caller picks up the phone. The feature only works with callers who are already in your contact list, and you can always turn it off in the settings.
If you can’t get through, Google Duo now also allows you to leave a video message. Duo also boasts the highest video quality of any video chat app.
JusTalk is another of the lesser known video chat apps. Nevertheless, it is very interesting and handy. Besides the main function to make video calls it has some cool features such as drawing while you chat (which adds a bit of fun to the process). You can communicate in groups: Group voice calls or group group video chats with up to 16 friends or colleagues. All contacts are added from the phonebook, or you can sign in with a Facebook account. You can also create themes for the app and make the interface of JusTalk convenient and stylish.
JusTalk is also high-quality encryption and cross-platform support. The development team is constantly working to improve the application. It is a worthy alternative to something like Google Duo, where video calling is also a core feature.
The app is free to download and use. In-app purchases provide theme changes and other personalization and do not affect functionality. The popularity of the app is growing day by day.
This is actually a text chat app with video chat features. The app contains single or group chats, support for most types of multimedia sharing (GIFs, videos, images, etc.), and some additional personalization elements such as stickers or filters to limit the range of people who can chat with you. You can create an open group chat up to 50 people just by adding a #hashtag, or a closed group. Kik – has become popular as a chat service for mobile gamers.More than 200 million people use the app to communicate with friends and family using the mobile internet.
Kik is not tied to your phone number, just create an account with your login (like Skype, unlike WhatsApp or Google Duo). The app is bright and colorful, so those who are looking for a chat for work moments should probably pay attention to other proposals. Otherwise, Kik is a great service for chatting and video calling with loved ones.
Signal Private Messenger
This is one of the most popular applications for private chatting. Signal Private Messenger provides end-to-end encryption for all messages, voice calls and video chats between two users. The service focuses on individual chats, so group communication is not a priority here. There is a feature, of course, but the communication is more private.
Signal is a completely independent non-commercial product. It has no ads and no activity tracking. The app works with phone number activation and phonebook integration. There is an interesting feature that allows you to put different sounds on calls or messages from different people. This way you can understand who is on the phone right now and decide on the necessary responses.
Video calls in the application work perfectly. Signal Private Messenger is completely free and open source. If you need a service solely for personal communication. If group chats are your priority, you should choose from the other ones.
Imagine you have a big group of friends and you decide to call them all. But someone couldn’t make it, someone is late, someone has a weak Internet connection and he is constantly out of dialog. Marco Polo solves the problem of waiting: instead of waiting for everyone, the app allows you to send video messages, which everyone can then watch at their leisure. If you can’t respond with a video message, you can type text responses or take quick pictures.
The app has thoughtful functionality for messaging and pictures, but video is still the priority in this app. The application works on all operating systems and on all platforms and synchronizes on gadgets. Marco Polo is designed to communicate with close friends and family, you need to know your phone number to communicate. The app is ad-free and the developers claim that it doesn’t collect user data.
It is highly recommended in many reviews, but there is a clear disadvantage – the cost. A subscription to Marco Polo costs $10 a month (or $30 a year), which is a significant threshold when there are so many free options around.
Your phone or tablet is the best device for video calling, but which app to choose? We hope our selection helps you make up your mind and familiarize yourself with unfamiliar options.
Now it is very important to stay in touch with loved ones and colleagues.
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