Can You Get FaceTime for Windows and PCs?

How to video chat with friends and family on your Windows PC

FaceTime is a video chat application for devices made by Apple. For Windows users, there is no way to use FaceTime on Windows PCs. However, there are many suitable alternatives to FaceTime for Windows that make it possible to video chat with friends and family from your computer, phone, or tablet.

Information in this article applies to all PCs and mobile devices running the Windows operating system.

Why Can't You Get FaceTime for Windows?

When introducing FaceTime at the company's Worldwide Developers Conference in 2010, Apple CEO Steve Jobs told attendees, "We're going to make FaceTime an open industry standard," which would mean that anyone could create software that was compatible with FaceTime. This would have opened the doors for third-party developers to create FaceTime apps for Windows and Android.

Illustration of one person unhappy with not using FaceTime on Windows, a second person delighted with Skype, WhatsApp and WeChat
 Lifewire / Derek Abella

Not long after it debuted on the iPhone, Apple added FaceTime support for the Mac so that users can make video calls between iOS devices and Macs. Since then, there's been little discussion about making FaceTime an open standard which means that there's no way for someone using Windows to make a FaceTime call to someone using an iOS device or a Mac.

Alternatives to FaceTime for Windows and PCs

Even though Apple FaceTime doesn't work on Windows, there are programs that offer similar video chat features, and these programs work across many operating systems. As long as you and the person you want to call both have these programs, you can make video calls to each other no matter what kind of device you use.

There are also many video chat app alternatives to FaceTime for Android.

  • Skype: One of the most widely used video chat apps, Skype works on macOS, iOS, Windows, Android, Linux, and other platforms. The software is free to use, and you can record Skype calls at no extra cost. It's also possible to call long-distance phone numbers directly for additional fees.
  • WeChat: With over a billion users, WeChat is a video chat app with international appeal. Although it's not as well known in the U.S., WeChat is popular in China, so you may need this app to communicate with people there.
  • Google Hangouts: Google Hangouts is a chat platform that offers text and video chat support for Android, Chome OS, iOS, macOS, and Windows. Since it integrates with the Google ecosystem, you can make video calls from the Gmail interface.
  • Glide: In addition to video calling and text messaging, you can use Glide to record short video clips and send them to friends to watch later. It also supports group chats with up to 50 people. Glide works on most Android, iOS, and Windows devices.
  • imo: This popular texting and video calling app runs on Android, iOS, and Windows. Use imo when you want to encrypt communications for greater security.
  • iMovicha: Like FaceTime, iMovicha works over 3G and 4G LTE cellular data networks, not just Wi-Fi. It's available for iOS, Windows Phone, Android, macOS, and Windows.
  • Viber: Viber claims to have over 500 million users worldwide. This app is an ideal way to connect with people internationally. It doesn't have ads and supports dozens of languages.