Step Into The Future With Video Calling Apps

I remember watching science fiction shows as a kid and being captivated by their depictions of crazy, futuristic technology. Spaceships, robots, and video calling on handheld devices! Boy, it was exciting to think about all the cool stuff people were supposed to have in the distant 21st century.

Well, the future is here, and we actually get to use a lot of that “crazy” stuff. I don’t have a spaceship or a robot (yet), but I do use video calling apps all the time. Most work delightfully well—even for us simple earthlings. Here are three popular apps I rely on regularly. Each offers a simple interface for easy video calling using either Wi-Fi or your network connection. They also all work cross-platform, so you can call someone on your phone and they can answer using their tablet or PC (or vice-versa.)

FaceTime is Apple’s built-in video chat for iPhone. It’s already integrated within iOS and your Phone app, meaning there’s no additional software to download or advanced setup needed—you simply place a call, choose the “Facetime” icon (which looks like a video camera), and you’re off! Your front facing camera will be activated to show you, and if the person you’re calling also has an iPhone, you’ll be able to see them on your screen.

Google’s Hangouts can be used with any Android device, many of which come with the app pre-loaded, or an iPhone. If you don’t have it, you can download it for free. With Hangouts, you can make video calls linking up to ten participants. It’s an especially handy app to use with tablets, and lets you make video calls quickly with just a few taps on your screen.

Skype has been around for more than 10 years now, and is among the most popular video calling apps, with over 250 million users worldwide. Once you’ve downloaded it, Skype is extremely user-friendly; you simply select the phone number or user name of the person you want to call, and then tap a video camera icon to get started. Like Hangouts, Skype works on both Android devices and iPhones.

Video calling is an awesome way to get up close and personal with your friends and family members. The best part is that you no longer have to be Captain Kirk or Jane Jetson to do it! If you haven’t tried it but want to, you’ll be well served by any of the apps discussed here. Choose whichever one offers the interface and features you’re most comfortable with, and get connected face-to-face.

17 Thoughts on "Step Into The Future With Video Calling Apps"

  1. Charlie says

    Google has a new service called Duo. It works extremely well for video calls and is compatible with both Android and Apple phones. It is free.

    reply to Charlie

  2. Mike O'Brien says

    You forgot Facebook Messenger!

    reply to Mike

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for another great suggestion, Mike. The Messenger app is another popular choice. Isn’t it great that there are so many options available now?

      reply to Ashley

  3. ET says

    Confused. I got a notice that I now have unlimited calling fro $30 per month. I also got a notice that I was at 77% of my “limit” of 2,000 minutes. Which is it?

    reply to ET

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Great news, ET! Our new plans went into effect today, so you now have unlimited calling available on your current plan. We’re happy to answer any questions about your plan or invoice at 888-345-5509. Thank you for reaching out to us!

      reply to Ashley

  4. Joseph Concepcion says

    Been a member of AARP when can I receive my discount? Thanks!

    reply to Joseph

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      We’re happy to help you with that, Joseph! Just give us a call at 888-345-5509 when you have your AARP member number handy, and we’ll add that information to your account. That way, you’ll be sure to get your 5% monthly discount. Thank you for posting, and we look forward to speaking with you soon!

      reply to Ashley

  5. Michael L. says

    My AARP membership is up to date and ahead still for a couple of years. Kind of wondering about the notice.

    reply to Michael

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for reaching out to us, Michael. It looks like there may be a discrepancy here, so at your convenience, we recommend confirming your membership information with AARP or with us at 888-345-5509. That way we can ensure your account has the correct information. We appreciate you reaching out to us!

      reply to Ashley

  6. Carol McCollough says

    After my account was activated, I expected to get voice and text service. As of today I have NOTHING. It’s getting quite stressful Since I am using my current cell phone, I have no way to call you. What now?? How can I get my service turned on?? PLEASE HELP!

    reply to Carol

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for reaching out to us, Carol. When porting your number from another carrier, it can take 24-48 hours for the process to complete, though it often takes less time. Please try powering your phone off, then back on again. I reviewed your account, and everything looks to be in order. If the issue continues, we can assist you via email at Service@ConsumerCellular.com in addition to our phone support at 888-345-5509. We appreciate your patience, and we hope you have a great day!

      reply to Ashley

  7. Marcia McGraw says

    I can receive your text and phone calls but my phone says no Service and I can not call out. What is wrong….???

    reply to Marcia

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for reaching out to us, Marcia. Please try turning your phone off, then turning it back on outside or near a window. This will allow your phone to reconnect to the nearest cellular tower, and get a better signal. If that doesn’t resolve the issue, we’re happy to troubleshoot further at 888-345-5509. We appreciate you posting!

      reply to Ashley

  8. Brenda Ainley says

    The log-in on your home page “disappears” if I move my cursor from the log-in box to my password manager or on-screen keyboard, thereby aborting my ability to use either. Surely something can be done to improve the log-in process so I can use my on-screen keyboard or password manager.

    reply to Brenda

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      That is great feedback, Brenda! I’m happy to pass that on to our site development team. Thank you for the suggestion, and for taking the time to reach out to us today!

      reply to Ashley

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