How to Use WhatsApp Video Calling

Make a WhatsApp call from any mobile device

WhatsApp is perhaps best known as a text-messaging app, but it can also be used to make video calls over the internet (also known as VoIP calls). This guide explains how to make both personal and group calls, and covers all available operating systems.

WhatsApp recently dropped support for devices running older operating systems. It now only supports iPhones running iOS 9 or later and Android smartphones running version 4.0.3 or later.

How to Make a WhatsApp Video Call

Making a video call is easy. All you need to do is open a chat with the person you want to contact and tap the Voice Call icon (the one that looks like a phone). Alternatively, you can tap on the Calls tab and press the green button to start a call with a contact.

These methods work on both iOS and Android.

Video call on WhatsApp

You can switch mid-call from a video to a voice conversation, and vice versa, by selecting the Camera icon while you're on a call. WhatsApp then sends a request to the person you're talking to asking them to switch from video to voice.

WhatsApp video calls are free. Since the app requires an internet connection, though, it consumes your phone's mobile data if you're connected through a 4G or 3G carrier network. To avoid eating through your data allowance, try connecting to a WiFi network before placing a call.

How to Receive a WhatsApp Video Call

Receiving calls on WhatsApp is easier than placing them. Here's how to do it:

  • On an iOS device, simply tap the green Accept icon to open the call, or the red Decline icon to refuse it.
  • On an Android device, swipe up to accept and swipe down to decline. You can also swipe up to Reply to decline the call with a quick message.
Accept button in WhatsApp

How to Make a WhatsApp Group Call

In addition to one-on-one video chats, WhatsApp lets you host group video chats. These work just like normal video calls, except you can add more contacts to the list of participants.

WhatsApp supports up to four participants in a group video call.

  1. Start a call with a contact using the instructions above.

  2. Once they accept the call, select Add Participant.

  3. Search for or select another contact you want to add to the call.

  4. Select Add.

    Adding a participant to a WhatsApp call

There are a few things to keep in mind when using the WhatsApps group calling feature.

  • Make sure everyone has a strong internet connection. The quality of the call depends on the contact with the weakest connection.
  • You can't switch to a group video call during a group voice call.
  • You can't remove a contact during a group voice call. The contact needs to hang up to disconnect from the call.
  • You can't add a blocked contact to the call, but it's possible to be in a group voice call with someone you've blocked if they were invited by someone else.

How to Make WhatsApp Video Calls on Desktops and Laptops

A screenshot of the WhatsApp Mac app.

Currently, you cannot use the WhatsApp desktop app to place video calls. You can only use the desktop app to send and receive text messages.

However, Windows users can work around this limitation by downloading Android emulators such as AndY, Nox, and BlueStacks. (These can also be downloaded on Mac computers.) Android emulators allow you to download the mobile version of WhatsApp onto your computer, which you can then use to place video calls as if you were doing so from an Android device.