WhatsApp Launches One-to-One Video & Voice Calls on Desktop App

WhatsApp is starting only with one-to-one calls for now and will include group voice and video calls in the future.

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Tech and Auto
2 min read
WhatsApp is starting only with one-to-one calls for now and will include group voice and video calls in the future.
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WhatsApp announced on Thursday, 4 March, that users will now be able to make one-to-one voice and video calls on the messaging platform’s desktop app. Till now, the feature was only available on smartphones.

Emphasising that all calls, whether on smartphones or desktops, are end-to-end encrypted, WhatsApp said it is starting only with one-to-one calls for now and will expand this feature to include group voice and video calls in the future.

The Facebook-owned messaging app said it broke the record “for the most calls ever made in a single day” on New Year’s eve 2020 with 1.4 billion video and voice calls.

“Throughout the last year we've seen significant increases in people calling one another on WhatsApp, often for long conversations. Last New Year’s Eve, we broke the record for the most calls ever made in a single day with 1.4 billion voice and video calls,” the company said in a statement.

Explaining its reason for expanding its calling feature to desktops, the platform said “answering on a bigger screen makes it easier to work with colleagues, see your family more clearly on a bigger canvas, or free up your hands to move around a room while talking.”

Desktp calls will be avilable in both, portrait and landscape orientation, and will appear in a resizable standalone window on computer screens. The feature “is set to be always on top so you never lose your video chats in a browser tab or stack of open windows,” WhatsaApp added.

Voice and video calls on WhatsApp are end-to-end encrypted, so WhatsApp can’t hear or see them, whether you call from your phone or your computer.
WhatsApp statement

Recently, WhatsApp also announced the roll-out of a new security feature for WhatsApp Web and Desktop – face and fingerprint unlock when linking devices. “This adds an additional layer of protection when you want to link your WhatsApp account to your computer,” the company stated in its blog.

How to Make Dekstop Calls

Desktop calling is supported on:

  • Windows 10 64-bit version 1903 and newer
  • macOS 10.13 and newer

To make or receive calls on WhatsApp Desktop, you’ll need:

  • An audio output device and microphone for voice and video calls.
  • A camera for video calls.
  • An active internet connection on your computer and phone. The call won’t go through your phone, but it needs to be online to establish the call.
  • WhatsApp will need access to your computer's microphone for calls and camera for video calls.

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