How do you video call on an android?

Sly

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I had used video calling long before i used android. I was playing around with my Galaxy nexus when i noticed i couldn't find the video call option on it.

46558098.jpg


That's my old Nokia 5800. I used to to video call with my family (I don't know what model they were using back then). You type in their phone number and you have the option of either doing a voice or video call. No emails or logging in required. For some reason, i can't seem to find the option on my Nexus, or i'm just not setting it up properly.

How do i get my android to do video calls with other 3G phones?
 

Skripka

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Any of: Google Talk, Skype, and I think G+ Messenger have video chat ability.
 

Sly

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Any of: Google Talk, Skype, and I think G+ Messenger have video chat ability.

Sure, but they need internet connection. The video chats i used uses phone numbers and the guy on the other end doesn't need his phone to be online.
 

Sly

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Someone gave me this link a moment ago.

http://whirlpool.net.au/wiki/android_video_calling

It has never been available in the United States and probably never will be.

/facepalm

So you guys NEVER had video calling? No wonder you Oooh-aaahed over face time!!!

Video calling was how we got introduced to 3G, long before wireless internet became popular. So i guess since android was developed in the US, i can't expect it to be built into android phones.
 

T4rd

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Someone gave me this link a moment ago.

http://whirlpool.net.au/wiki/android_video_calling



/facepalm

So you guys NEVER had video calling? No wonder you Oooh-aaahed over face time!!!

Video calling was how we got introduced to 3G, long before wireless internet became popular. So i guess since android was developed in the US, i can't expect it to be built into android phones.

Yeah, I don't think any of our US carriers support video calling without a data/internet connection. I've used it like twice since I've got my Gnex (at launch) and it was really just for the novelty of it to see how well it worked and it worked pretty well in Gtalk and Skype. I talked to my wife on her Rezound in Gtalk and my mom on her iPad without an issue.
 

Loki008

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Someone gave me this link a moment ago.

http://whirlpool.net.au/wiki/android_video_calling



/facepalm

So you guys NEVER had video calling? No wonder you Oooh-aaahed over face time!!!

Video calling was how we got introduced to 3G, long before wireless internet became popular. So i guess since android was developed in the US, i can't expect it to be built into android phones.

Pretty much this. It's sad. I've been using Nokia phones purchased unlocked for years and have been awaiting this feature. I got excited a few years ago when at&t rolled out their video phone service to find out it was a propriety internet calling protocol which only wired on a select number of phones with the app installed and a billing code on the account.
 

Impulse

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Someone gave me this link a moment ago.

http://whirlpool.net.au/wiki/android_video_calling



/facepalm

So you guys NEVER had video calling? No wonder you Oooh-aaahed over face time!!!

Video calling was how we got introduced to 3G, long before wireless internet became popular. So i guess since android was developed in the US, i can't expect it to be built into android phones.

You were still using a data connection for video calling you know... Just because they didn't call it such or didn't advertise internet access doesn't mean you weren't doing essentially the same thing.

Once VOIP apps like Skype and common apps like GTalk become more widespread I'd be surprised if they don't deprecate whatever systems they used for video calling with phone #'s as identifiers (in Europe). Facetime's essentially the same thing in that it uses the phone # as an identifier, 'course it only works w/iOS.

Was it even a standarized system beyond Nokias/your own network? I'm rather clueless about it, but yea, it was never something that US carriers implemented.

Skype and other apps of it's ilk will integrate into your dialer tho, it's really no big deal beyond the pain of not being able to voice call people still using older phones & the older system I imagine. Symbian's dead anyway so it's not like they have a choice but to move to iOS / Android / WP eventually!

It's kind of funny the US carriers/markets have even found ways to screw foreign markets/networks... We apologize! :eek:
 

Sly

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You were still using a data connection for video calling you know... Just because they didn't call it such or didn't advertise internet access doesn't mean you weren't doing essentially the same thing.

The thing is, it's integrated into the 3G itself. So it uses a 3G data connection, but worked even without going to the internet. No additional charges beyond standard carrier fees.

It's not a matter of symbian vs android, it's a 3G protocol so it works independent of the phones OS. And facetime doesn't quite work the same way, the fact that it needs to go online to work means it logs on to apple and the phone is actually identified by its IP, the number is just a user name or device id.

From what i understand, the connection is comparable to two dial-up modems. When two PC's are connected via modem, they are communicating directly without involving TCP/IP or any packet based protocols. That's completely incompatible with how the internet works. There's no question about popularity or such being a hindrance to implementation since it's already a part of 3G. It's already there and will work with other phones.



PS: Did a bit of searching and found that the older Galaxy S still supported it. You can see the green phone icon along the top bar.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0i5q-UMfug8

What it looks like on the other end

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2lbpCJE1lcY
 
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silent-circuit

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Yeah, US carries would /never/ let you use 3G data without charging you for 3G data, so you can give up on that pipe dream.
 

Impulse

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If it's really some sort of switched protocol piggybacked off a 3G connection (still doesn't make any sense to me) then there's even more incentive for the carriers to deprecate it since it'd be far less efficient than any standard VOIP. If it was originally supported on Android then there's your answer, the carriers clearly wanted to move away from it or they would've pushed for continued support at the OS or manufacturer level.

I really don't think it was much more than natively implemented VOIP tho, just because the carriers charged differently for it doesn't mean the data wasn't traveling over the web. Text messages are essentially data transfers like any other too, carriers just choose to charge differently for it.
 

Sly

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Advantage of it was that it just worked. You didn't have to hope the other guy has a particular program installed. Such as, wanting to video chat using skype, the other guy will have to have skype installed. Even if he does have it, you'll have to hope he's online so you can connect to his phone. And since we try to stay off the net (we don't have unlimited data), the odds of being online outside the house is even less likely.

If you were to send an message to someone, does SMS or Yahoo Messenger have a greater chance of being received? When making a voice call, would Dial or Skype be more successful? Bearing in mind that the guy on the other end is a regular joe.

For App based video calling to work
#1 Has to have a phone that supports it
#2 Has to be online
#3 Has to have the app and logged in

For 3G based video calling to work
#1 Has to have a phone that supports it.

Even if they do add data charges, the odds of a success connection makes it advantageous over App based.

Of course, it's not like i use this all the time (Been a while since i used it, hence why i didn't notice it was missing until recently). But it was nice to have.
 

Impulse

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Take it up w/the carriers man, if the previous system wasn't billed as data use then it's obviously just a money grab... Your phone is always online to an extent, even if you manually turn off mobile data it's still got a data connection open on the EDGE or 1x ports (how do you think you receive text message notifications, or even voice mail notifications?).

The old system probably piggybacked off that and yeah I imagine it was more convenient if it was standardized in Europe, but they're clearly eschewing it if newer phones don't support it and there ain't nothing you can do about it. It not only allows them to charge you for data used while video calling but it offloads the entire support infrastructure off the carrier's shoulders,

If you rarely use it I don't see what's so complicated about shooting someone an SMS saying "hey get on Skype, let's video chat" (if they aren't already on). :p The upshot is that you'll probably get much better quality once you do have it working, since Skype or whomever are focused on making the best possible video call service (not on saving the most bandwith or w/e the carrier's priorities are).
 

silent-circuit

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Text messages are weird, they aren't handled the same way as other data. I read an article on it a couple years ago, don't remember specifics.
 

Blue Fox

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Take it up w/the carriers man, if the previous system wasn't billed as data use then it's obviously just a money grab... Your phone is always online to an extent, even if you manually turn off mobile data it's still got a data connection open on the EDGE or 1x ports (how do you think you receive text message notifications, or even voice mail notifications?).
SMS doesn't use a data connection. It's embedded in the unused space in the control channels used by the network. Voicemail notifications are done through SMS as well.

As far as Android is concerned, I haven't seen it on any handsets. Only smartphones I've seen that support it were running Symbian or Windows Mobile.
 

Zurginator

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I primarily use Skype, but hopefully with G+ we'll start seeing video calling integrated into Android.
 

Tup3x

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My Galaxy S did have video calling support with stock rom as far as I know. Though, it does not change the fact that Symbian phones have been doing that for almost 10 years.
 

Sly

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Fascinating read. I've never actually checked how video conferencing worked.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3G-324M

h.324 protocol for wireless transmission
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H.324
It uses a regular 33,600 bit/s modem for transmission, the H.263 codec for video encoding and G.723.1 for audio.

h.263
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H.263
As H.264 provides a significant improvement in capability beyond H.263, the H.263 standard is now considered a legacy design. Most new videoconferencing products now include H.264 as well as H.263 and H.261 capabilities.

3GPP Members
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3GPP
These are the guys that determines what 3G can do. It's not a Nokia proprietary feature.

Sony Ericsson K800 dumbphone (2006)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VP19WoVBeU4
 

Sly

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Now a days many mobile phone provide this facility an its only depend on android application. You have to using this application you can do video call. There are many softwares support this application of android.

The thing is, for that to work, both of your has to run on the same App and you both need to be online. If we were to use my original post as an example, how would you be able to connect to a Nokia phone? Or a Windows mobile phone? That last one i posted that can do video conferencing wasn't even a smartphone. And even if both of you had an android, what are the odds of the guy on the other end (Who is a regular joe), having the same app you do? Or if he's even downloaded any app at all.
 

Zurginator

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The thing is, for that to work, both of your has to run on the same App and you both need to be online. If we were to use my original post as an example, how would you be able to connect to a Nokia phone? Or a Windows mobile phone? That last one i posted that can do video conferencing wasn't even a smartphone. And even if both of you had an android, what are the odds of the guy on the other end (Who is a regular joe), having the same app you do? Or if he's even downloaded any app at all.

I'd say Skype is a pretty much universal system.... It's on every platform, and supports cross platform calling.
 

Impulse

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It is, but it's still one more layer of friction than what was previously available on European networks... He has a point, even tho Skype will ultimately perform better (it'll adapt to faster/slower connections betterIMO, if nothing else). There's still a lot of people without smartphones and thus Skype, and a lot of people without Skype accounts for whatever reason. I wish Skype used push notifications too, rather than relying on being toggled online/away/etc.
 

AeonF1

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It's been integrated into Talk since Gingerbread.

2.3.4 to be exact. How do I know? The stock Gingerbread rom on my Droid Charge doesn't have it. The custom roms do but for some reason the mic doesn't work for it, works for Skype though. Kind of sucks since everybody I know uses Gtalk video chat now and have pretty much ditched Skype.
 

Worminater

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google chat has had video calling for a while; on my nexus it's integrated seamlessly and always on (default I believe). cross platform with desktop; not sure about ios/winmo. Upcoming g+ integration should make it even nicer.
 

Impulse

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google chat has had video calling for a while; on my nexus it's integrated seamlessly and always on (default I believe). cross platform with desktop; not sure about ios/winmo. Upcoming g+ integration should make it even nicer.

Google Talk at least implements push notifications but it's not as universally available as Skype. Still, for Android users it's close to ideal. Still wouldn't ever work with dumb phones etc.
 

coolie_d

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The thing is, for that to work, both of your has to run on the same App and you both need to be online. If we were to use my original post as an example, how would you be able to connect to a Nokia phone? Or a Windows mobile phone? That last one i posted that can do video conferencing wasn't even a smartphone. And even if both of you had an android, what are the odds of the guy on the other end (Who is a regular joe), having the same app you do? Or if he's even downloaded any app at all.

If you use Google Talk, most Android phones SHOULD have it preinstalled, as it's part of the Google Apps package. So the odds are pretty damn good, I would say. Most Android users use GTalk the same way BB users use BBM.
 

Sly

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If you use Google Talk, most Android phones SHOULD have it preinstalled, as it's part of the Google Apps package. So the odds are pretty damn good, I would say. Most Android users use GTalk the same way BB users use BBM.

Not that good. Remember that there's more variety outside the US. While iOS and Android are dominant, there are more phones out there that don't. Can a nokia, a windows mobile, or a dumbphone run Google Plus?

The same argument i have on iOS just a drop in the bucket over here, also applies (tho to a lesser extent), to Android. You don't need a smartphone to use 3G video, and it can be applied to all 3G devices since it's part of 3G specs and not limited to a platform.

Can a G+ connect to a nokia? I know that an ericsson can.
 

Impulse

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Google Talk (which does chat/video) is currently independent of Google+ (the social network) btw, G+'s video equivalent is called Hangouts. The 3G video standard implemented in Europe was never utilized in the US tho so we've never really had a global standard anyway, but I agree with your point that for European users it's a slight loss of functionality.
 

Sly

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I'm actually trying to contact my parents android phone right now. Unfortunately, i'm not getting any response and neither does the status check. I've already put it on an unlimited time account so it doesn't get billed everytime it goes online.

Neither Yahoo, G+, nor AndroidLost are responding.

But then i just remembered. The phone by default doesn't actually go online 24/7. Only when an app *inside* the phone requests a connection. When they go in the background, even tho they'll still receive push notifications, that's not enough to make the phone stay online.

I'm a techie, when i'm outside, i'm always fiddling with something on the phone (browsing, streaming, etc.) so it's always got an internet connection.

But my parents, who are just casual users, don't use the phone enough to trigger a data connection.


PS: I just put in AndroidLost last night, and i didn't realize until now that you're supposed to put a password on it to make it accept SMS commands and tell it to go online :eek:
 

Impulse

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What Android phone isnt always online by default? All three that ive had always had mobile data turned on by default, and Google Talk uses push notifications anyway so it doesn't depend on polling or anything... Skype does have to be set to online within the app. Not sure what you mean by unlimited time accounts or getting billed for going online either... Don't you just get billed for actual data use?
 

TheGamerZ

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This is how you video call on AN android:
hologram_starwars.jpg




Skype or Google Talk would allow you to video call on an Android powered phone.
 
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Sly

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I guess i should explain a bit on how our network works. Note that i'm not in the US so our rates likely won't apply to yours.

When the phone is online the phone signal meter turns into either an H, E or 3G symbol. When idle for a few minutes, it changes back into the regular signal strength meter and you will be considered offline from then on. The different brands we've had behave this way. Do your phones show the 3G symbol 24/7?

(Note: Block is the term used when i looked it up on their website, so i'm using it here. Block refers to a section of time, not 'to hinder')

As for our pre-paid credit system on data. We are time based. When you want to go online, your phone will automatically trigger a payment for a 30 minute block. Assuming that you have 100 credits in your account, when you attempt to go online at 9:00am, 10 credits will be deducted from your account and you will be free to go online anytime you want between 9:00am and 9:30am. If you are still online when you reach 9:31, another 30 minute block will be purchased and a further 10 credits will be deducted. So if you were to check your email and go online, you will pay for an entire 30 minute block even tho you'll only be online for a few seconds.

Data applies to all data connection, not just the internet. Video and A-GPS will trigger a 30 minute block. That's why there's an option to disable GPS Assist on your phone. If my phone was actively online, my 300 credit load would be gone in a day and a half. If you accidentally tapped the browser icon on your phone and you get the 3G symbol, congratulations, you have just had 10 credits deducted from your account, have a nice day :) That's also why the data packet checkbox is disabled by default.

That is how the data credit system works by default. There are other packages you can purchase but most people aren't aware of them.

In my parents case, i used 99 credits to buy a 30 day block, with a 50MB cap. They only use the phone for GPS and email anyway.

Incidentally, our credit rates are SMS=1 Credit Each, Voice=8 credits per minute, Video=Triggers a data block purchase (Only 15 minute block last time i used it, might be because you paid for both ends).

Yes, two minutes of voice is more expensive than a half hour of data. If you're gonna go longer than a minute, you may as well use Video.





And a few things i can't help but notice everytime i go through these forums, so i may as well mention some of the differences with our demographic.

#1 Service Providers are not the primary source of cellphones. We have dozens of phone stores in each mall. We buy the phones from one of those stores, and then go to a service branch of any of the three major providers and buy a sim card for $1. If you want to change carriers, just buy their sim card and swap them out.

#2 Consequently, it's safe to assume that the phones are not crippled. They retain full data and tethering functionality. No reformatting or firmware change is done to your phone when you bring it in to any of the carriers. All you need is a sim card.

#3 We are predominantly pre-paid, so lock-ins are uncommon. Lock-in will only happen if you opt for a post-paid and get your phone from the providers. Most don't do that. All carriers use the same tech so the phones are interchangeable, the lock-in happens at the firmware level... even a dumbphone can be flashed and unlocked with special connectors, the phone stores have the equipment to do it.
 
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Impulse

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Wow, that sounds like a God awful system, on top of data caps you have this timed/credit system constantly putting your use on the clock? And I thought some of the US carrier restrictions were bad, they milk you in every possible way. Where is this anyway? I'm pretty sure most European countries just have standard monthly bandwith/data caps and that's it (at least as far as data goes). Do I even wanna know what your roaming rates thru Europe are like?

Your phone's firmware is definitely not as virgin as you seem to think it is, stock behavior for the vast majority of smartphones is simply to be online 24/7, whether it's 3G or even 4G, users can disable that if they want to conserve battery life but the convenience outweighs it and today's phones are pretty well optimized between push notifications and deep sleep states etc. It costs nothing to simply be online here (and most places from what I gather), actual use is the only real cost... And Sprint along worth other smaller carriers still offer totally unlimited use too with no monthly cap. (there's unlimited voice plans too and nearly every carrier has an unlimited texting option)

Say what you will about the cost of plans and contacts here or the different network technologies in use, but most of our heavy users would tear their hair out in your situation, and I'm pretty sure that's not the norm thru all of Europe. Someone on an $80 plan (less on a regional carrier) can travel thru all of the US with no roaming and can call every mobile phone on the country for free, all the while using data whenever and wherever (3GB-5GB monthly caps are the current standard tho there's higher plans and exceptions as I alluded to earlier).

From what I understand, rural coverage in the US is much more extensive than it is in Europe too. People over here like to bitch and moan about the negative aspects of our system (some of what you outlined) but they tend to neglect the many many upsides to it as well. 10-20Mbps 4G LTE coverage has also been spreading far faster than in any other part of the world (it puts our terrestrial broadband offerings to shame in many cases, and those do lag terribly behind many of the better connected countries). The grass is definitely not always greener over the fence...

No wonder you're yearning for something that doesn't rely on standard data for notifications... You basically have to check on everything manually if you want to be frugal, push notifications are flaky at best with that kinda system and polling every couple hours would just land you in the poor house... Unless I'm reading too much into it and the pricing for those credits is barely peanuts and totally amazing.

Seriously, that can't be the norm throughout Europe... AFAIK there's more than three carriers in many Euro countries, hell most of the US was afraid when it looked like we'd go from four major carriers to three, thankfully the government stepped in for now...
 
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silent-circuit

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Yeah, that sounds horrible. I can't believe I'm saying this, but I'd rather pay AT&T or Verizon for 2-3GB and unlimited everything at around $90/mo or straight talk for unlimited voice / text and 2GB of data at $45/mo than deal with that batshit insane system.
 

Sly

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@Impulse
Ah, forgot to mention, i'm in the Philippines (South East Asia). I'm not European :p I think they also use the pre-paid and SIM system in the UK, but i'm not sure if they're also time based or bandwidth based.

Yeah, it's pretty bad. The carriers are competing, that's why a single person can have multiple sim cards, because one carrier may suddenly come up with a different promo to draw customers. But it's still the stone age over here compared to the rest of asia. We're ranked as the highest SMS users in the world, but it's because the providers are squeezing every dime they can rather than upgrade.

I'm not sure how they're modifying the firmware. The phones we have are factory sealed and not associated with any of the carriers. It has to be regional.
 

Impulse

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Ah, my bad, think we were talking about network standards and what Europe had adopted at one point and I just sorta assumed... They generally have same-tech GSM networks in EU so you can change carriers freely and whatnot but pricing definitely isn't that terrible AFAIK, still has it's downsides compared to current US networks but plans are actually cheaper and there's more competition, they definitely revolve mostly around single sum packages for X amount of data/minutes/texts.

Those carriers over there in the Philippines though, man, that'll teach me to complain about what we've got. I'm actually not in the continental US (Puerto Rico) but we've been very lucky that three of the four major US carriers have invested heavily here... PR is really densely populated so it's a good test market for them. Anyway, the carriers can easily have the manufacturer ship phones with modified firmwares you know. Or do you (or the phone stores) import them from other markets?

US carriers don't really get phones after manufacture and then tinker with them, the original OEM does most of it for them except for some software development... Sprint never even touches phones that are ordered online, they go from HTC in Taiwan or wherever it's assembled to a UPS distribution center that's sub contacted by Sprint, and from there to the customer or stores or 3rd parties.

Anyway, if carriers aren't doing anything to your phones at the software level to force data connections to turn off after a while then they're doing some crazy stuff at the network level to drop your connection and not reestablish it until a manual request... That could be very bad if it leaves the phone's 3G radio turned on and scanning for a signal (single biggest battery killer after display use).

When your phone disconnects, if you go into the settings for mobile data without actually changing anything, does it display as searching for connection or is mobile data just turned off/unchecked? I don't even see how the latter would work without custom software... If I manually turn off the data connection on a phone here or even an EU import it's simply not gonna come back unless I manually flip the switch again, no mater how many apps requesting data I open.

I'm surprised they ever implemented 3G video calling standards there when they're forcing all these other restrictions, tho I guess there's little reason to worry about video chat or tethering when usage is metered that heavily.
 

Monstieur

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Except for the native network 3G video calling, all these other services suck over 3G. None of them get the dedicated uninterrupted bandwidth required for a smooth low latency video call. The native video call is like a real time dedicated link like a voice call.
 

elzeus

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Hangouts is pretty much the best option unless you buy skype features.
 

michaeljos

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Starting a video call on Skype 3.2 for Android phones is easy. To make a video call:

Sign in to Skype.
Select the Contacts tab.
Find and select the contact you’d like to video call.
Tap Video call to start your video call.

Alternatively, you can turn on video during a Skype-to-Skype voice call. Simply tap the video camera icon The Video camera icon. during a call to start sending video.
 
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