What you need to know
- WhatsApp can now make voice and video calls through its desktop app.
- Previously, the desktop client only supported sending messages.
- The desktop client still doesn't support group calls.
After what seems like an eternity of waiting, WhatsApp is rolling out support for voice and video calls through its desktop app. The makers of WhatsApp beta tested voice and video calling for some time, but it is now rolling out to desktops, including Windows 10 PCs (via TechCrunch).
The WhatsApp desktop app now supports both voice and video calls, but only for one-on-one communication. At this time, you can't use the desktop app for group calls. In the future, WhatsApp will update the desktop app to support group calls.
You can use video calls in either portrait or landscape mode. When you're on a call on your PC, the call is "set to be always on top so you never lose your video chats in a browser tab or stack of open windows," according to WhatsApp.
Notably, voice and video calls are not coming to WhatsApp Web at this time. That means you have to download the WhatsApp Desktop app, not just pin the WhatsApp web interface. Luckily, the app is free and easy to use.
Over 2 billion people use WhatsApp (via TechCrunch). During the current global pandemic, many people have had to mix and match services to communicate through all of their devices. With support for voice and video calls on desktops, quite a few people shouldn't have to jump around between apps as much to stay in touch.
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Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at email@example.com.