WhatsApp for Android beta has been updated with group audio and video calling features. Though WhatsApp itself has not officially confirmed the rollout, the features are available for beta testers. Last month, Facebook confirmed group video calling for WhatsApp at its annual F8 conference. The social media giant announced it could roll out the feature by the end of this year. Now, it looks like a stable release for the public could happen soon.
The beta version of group video calling was also spotted on WhatsApp iOS build 2.18.52, though it is limited to a select few users. In May, the audio call feature started rolling out WhatsApp for iOS version 2.18.60, again for a limited set of users. It is unclear when group audio and video calling will be available for the public, but here’s how you can get the features right now:
WhatsApp group audio, video calling: How to get
WhatsApp group audio and video calling features are currently available for Android beta testers. The group video and voice calling can be enabled by updating the app to beta version 2.18.189 and v2.18.192 respectively. WhatsApp beta testers get early access latest features being tested by the company, even those that might not it to final release.
WhatsApp group audio, video calling: How to become a beta tester for Android
WhatsApp Android users can head to Google Play Store to become a beta tester. Open WhatsApp app and scroll down, past suggestions for a similar app. One should find the “Become a beta tester” tab. Click on ‘Yes, I’m in” and confirm by clicking on “Join”. It should take a few hours before WhatsApp enrolls the user in its beta programme. WhatsApp beta for Android programme can be left at any time. Open WhatsApp beta test page on Play Store, and click on “Leave the testing program” option.
WhatsApp group audio, video calling: How many participants can be added
WhatsApp allows for adding up to three participants in group calls. This makes a total of four participants including the person who started video or audio call. Once three friends are added to the group call, the ‘Add participant’ icon gets disabled. We will have to wait for an official release to find out if WhatsApp decides to make any changes in the final version.
WhatsApp group audio, video calling: How to start group video call
To start video group calls, simply video call a friend. Once call gets connected, one should notice an ‘Add participant’ icon on top right of the screen. Clicking the icon will take users directly to the contact list. Here, users can select another friend to add to group video call. A third participant can be added in a similar manner.
WhatsApp group audio, video calling: How to start group audio call
WhatsApp group audio call can be started in a way similar to group video call. Tap on a contact and start a voice call. Click on ‘Add participant’ icon on the call screen to add participants. Do note that only three participants can be added.
WhatsApp group audio, video calling: What is the difference
Of course, WhatsApp video call screen will have a video feed from participants, including the person who started the call. The group audio call screen has profile pictures of all participants except for the person who started the call. The audio call screen will also have names of all participants separated by a comma.