Friday, July 22, 2011

Best Free Video Calling Apps For Android

Android is currently the fastest growing mobile platform and the main reason for that is that it is Open Source, giving greater flexibility to application developers. While a lot of Android phones do have a secondary front camera meant to be used in video calling, it was never really put to use until recently. The reason was that the platform did not have native support for video calling until the introduction of Android 2.3 Gingerbread, even as Google is working on Android 2.3.4 to bring native support for the same to be used via Google Talk. Until then, here is our pick of apps that will facilitate video calling on your Android phone for free. Please bear in mind that video calling through each of these apps works over Wi-Fi as well as 3G, and data charges will be applicable according to the data plan you have opted for.
Yahoo! Messenger
Current Version: 1.4
Size: 2.4 MB
Requirements: Android 2.0.1 and above.One of the oldest IMs around, and with most people already having a Yahoo! id, Yahoo! Messenger is the ideal app to start off with. While it does support front facing camera, you may find that it does not allow you to do so on some devices. In such cases, you can easily use the rear camera to make a video call (even if it may mean that you will have to stand in front of a mirror to make a call). Since the app does not natively support video chat, you are required to install the video plug-in from the Android Market to make video calls.This app is still in beta, so we can expect better video calling support (without you having to install an additional plug-in), in future versions. In addition to making video calls, you can chat with your buddies on Yahoo!, Windows Live, and Facebook, share photos and videos, or even send free international SMS.
Qik Video Connect
Current Version: 0.08.43
Size: 4.5 MB
Requirements: Android 2.1 and above.Qik Video Connect is an awesome app for video calling because it was built from the ground up with that in mind. Just like with other IM services, you are required to sign up for free with Qik to use this app. This app sports a very clean interface with the video of the other party occupying almost the entire screen (with support for up to VGA resolution) and your video in the top left corner.One of the highlights of this service is the ability to make video calls to iDevice users. Yet another feature is Video Mail, where you can send or receive video messages if the other party is offline, though sending is no longer available for free, receiving remains free. Similarly, you can share live videos to Facebook, Twitter, and a few other social networks.
Fring Group Video Calls, Chat
Current Version:
Size: 5.5 MB
Requirements: Android 1.5 and above.This is the Android version of the already popular mobile IM app, and it supports video calling. Just like in the previous app, you need to sign up for free to be able to make free voice and video calls to your friends. Fring also supports calling to iDevice users.Using what it calls DVQ (Dynamic Video Quality) technology, it senses and adjusts video quality according to your internet connection, trying to ensure a smooth video calling experience. One of its unique features is group video call, using which you can simultaneously have up to 4 participants in a video conference. Fring can also be used to make calls to regular phones around the world at a small price when compared to regular call rates.
Tango Voice & Video Calls
Current Version: 1.6.10456
Size: 4.8 MB
Requirements: Android 2.1 and above.Tango is simple and easy-to-use app for making video calls through your Android phone. Once installed, it pulls contacts your phone's list and creates a list of contacts already using Tango, thus saving you the trouble of doing the same.This app requires no log in or password; it creates an account within seconds, just by associating it with your phone number. You can invite friends to use this app by SMS and email facility right through the app. Free calls can be made even to iOS devices, and a call started as a voice call can be switched to video call mode by simply touching the camera icon near the top right corner of the screen.
Current Version:
Size: 9.7 MB
Requirements: Android 2.1 and above.While Skype was there since long, it enabled video calling feature only recently. Nevertheless, this app has got the finesse you would expect of a mature professional app, and you get that for free. Skype allows you to make free Skype-to-Skype video calls, while calling to phones is available at rates considerably lower than standard telephone call ratesCurrently, two-way video calling is supported on the following handsets: Google Nexus S, HTC Desire S, Sony Ericsson Xperia Neo,and Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro. Samsung Galaxy S owners have to upgrade their handset to Android v2.2 to be able to run Skype. Future versions will extend support for more handsets.


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