### Unlocking the Next Level of Video Calls: WhatsApp's Game-Changing Update

WhatsApp for video calling is almost here, and it’s about to change the game for the virtual meetups of the current pandemic era. Facebook-owned WhatsApp is preparing to add video calling features for a group of 1,000 users as it steps up the competition among the big tech players of Zoom, FaceTime and Google Meet. So here’s how WhatsApp is going to change the way we all video call, and why you’ll soon be saying goodbye to Zoom, FaceTime or Google Meet.

#### **Introducing Screen Sharing: A Feature-Packed Update**

At the centre of this update is screen sharing on video calls – here is a match of design and intent. This wasn’t a mere technical augmentation to video chat: it was a direct route between remote users, much more meaningful and interactive than where the technology had previously been. Think of how many times you’ve needed to tell your parents something on the computer but didn’t have time to start over to demonstrate and then explain the issue – or how many videos you’ve watched with a friend who wasn’t in the room. Audio sharing was an important complement to this feature, so that there was no gap between the dialogue and what you were viewing.

#### **Group Calls Just Got Bigger**

Remember video chatting with a handful of friends when six, or maybe eight, people was the most speakers you could fit at once? WhatsApp now lets you add up to 32. If that feels like a magic trick, it’s only because you’re witnessing internet culture undergo a period of rapid adaptation. The ongoing shift to virtual connections took a dramatic jump post-2020 when so many of us working, learning, socialising and consoling each other online.

#### **Spotlight on the Speaker**

One standout improvement is the speaker spotlight feature, which puts the current speaker front and centre in group calls, much like can be done with other apps such as Google Meet. It is a seemingly modest adjustment but one that makes communication smoother, so that everyone will always know who is speaking, without the usual guesswork.

#### **Crystal-Clear Calls with MLow Codec**

If there’s a single factor that can turn a call into an absolute disaster, it’s audio quality. Everyone hates a crackly call, and WhatsApp’s latest change from the old E FMVAD codec to a new and improved MLow codec is the best thing that could have possibly happened to WhatsApp calls. Even better noise and echo cancellation, whatever your surroundings be it a noisy café or traffic on the streets nearby, you’ll hear the other person with remarkably less interference. And finally, if your network is up to the task, WhatsApp will serve you full-HD video.

#### **Competing with ZOOM, FACETIME, and GOOGLE MEET**

This update now puts WhatsApp in direct competition with Zoom and others including FaceTime and, of course, Google Meet. Every app has different strengths but the recent WhatsApp additions fit into a niche for anyone who wants to video call in a variety of ways, with quality and ease of use as their priorities. The new screen share feature, higher limit on participant numbers, speaker spotlight and improved audio quality put WhatsApp not just in the market but as a leading choice.

#### **Why This Matters: The Future of Video Calling**

The launch of new video calling features for WhatsApp signals a growing expectation of how we should use digital communications tools in the face of an increasingly networked world. At a time when the tools we use to stay connected with others are so vital, this update reflects a demand for quality, ease of use and flexibility in the way we communicate online. If this WhatsApp feature is anything to go by, a more immersive and flexible form of communication is set to become the norm for the future.

### About GOOGLE

When talking about advances in digital communication, we cannot forget about Google as a driving force. Google, as one of the first companies to make itself known online by providing internet services and technologies, has been constantly pushing the limits of what’s possible for the internet, including video calls such as those provided by Google Meet, which have not been an option before for many of us. Thanks to Google, and other technology companies that set the bar high on innovating, tools such as WhatsApp’s enhanced video calls are possible today.

To conclude, WhatsApp’s great leap forward is not just an upgrade. It is a statement. The development of WhatsApp and others like it, here propelled by the vision of tech giants such as Google, means that platforms for communication are almost bound to change the way we stay connected – whether it is communicating with friends, working with colleagues, or coming together with family; the better audio and video calling functions of WhatsApp is set to change the way we connect online and make every call clearer, closer and more memorable.

Jun 14, 2024
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