Apple announces FaceTime updates2021-06-07 18:28 by Daniela
Tags: Apple, FaceTime, iOS
As part of an iOS 15 presentation at its Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) today, Apple said iOS users will be able to create links to FaceTime chats that they can share with Android and Windows users. People on those platforms can jump on the call from the browser; no FaceTime app for Android or Windows just yet.
Apple is turning FaceTime into a bit more of a Zoom-like video calling service with this update. FaceTime is also going to allow you to grab a link to a scheduled call so that you can share it with people in advance and join in at the right time.
Apple is also adding updates that make the experience of video chatting on FaceTime more closely resemble real life conversations.
"When talking in person, our brains process hundreds of social, auditory and visual cues. When talking on a video call, many of those signals can get lost, leaving us feeling drained. So this year, we've set out to make FaceTime calls feel more natural, comfortable, and lifelike," said Craig Federighi, Apple's senior vice president of Software Engineering.
Through a spatial audio feature, FaceTime calls will sound like you're sitting in the same room with your friends - that means if someone is on the left side of your screen, their audio will come through the left side of your speaker. This functionality might not translate well to smaller devices like an iPhone, but could be interesting on devices like an iMac. The person speaking will have a white ring appear around their video while they're talking, and users will be able to select a grid view to see the other people on the call, which seems quite similar to Zoom.
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