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Best Skype Alternatives for Both Business and Personal Use
  • A good collection of video chat apps
  • Connect with people beyond boundaries
  • For both business and personal activities

Best Skype Alternatives in 2020[Free and Paid]

Oct 17, 2020• Proven solutions

Get sick of Skype? Skype requires an uninterrupted network connection for flawless interaction with your group. If there is any issue with your internet then you have to face challenges in resolving it amidst your serious sessions or meetings. This article guides you with reliable skype alternatives to do conference calls, group video chat, and etc., for your personal and business activities. You will learn:

Part 1: For Business Use—Conference Call and Group Video Chat

To support during the pandemic and unexpected natural disasters you can make use of these platforms to connect with your colleagues and higher officials using these below group video chat apps. These apps assist you to connect online conference calls, video chat, screen share, etc.

Surf through a detailed analysis of the exclusive group video chat apps below(they are listed in no particular order):

Skype alternatives Pricing Compatibility Allowed participants Top Features
Zoom Free version available /Subscription starts at $14.99 Windows/Mac OS/Android/iOS 100 for free version Group video chat/Online meeting/Screen share
Google Hangouts Free version available/$5 for 30 GB of storage Windows/Mac OS/Android/iOS/Web-based     25 Video calls/Auto Screen Focus/Screen share
Microsoft Teams Free version available /Subscription starts at $5.00 Windows/Mac OS/ Linux/Android/iOS 300 for free version Group video chat/Online meeting/Team and personal file storage

1. Zoom

It is one of the best skype alternatives and you can make use of this app easily. This app came into existence in the year 2011. It has a simple interface and offers reliable service to the users. The controls to trigger the video chat on the Zoom platform are explicit and you do not have to spend a long time in search of the menus.  The free version of this app allows 40 minutes of uninterrupted group meeting comprising of 100 participants. In this environment, you can look for conference rooms, meetings, webinars, chat platforms, etc. You can easily join or host the meeting without any issues. It supports Windows, Android, and iOS gadgets. It works with the help of the unique Meeting ID. The host creates a Meeting ID and the participants make use of the ID to participate in the group video chat. This platform allows you to share screens, files, and text within the participants optimally.

Tips:
If you don't need more participants and features, you can use the free version. Now Zoom charges $14.99/mo/host for Small Teams,$19.99 /mo/host for Small & Med Businesses, and large enterprises. You can also read Tips to Setup Zoom Meetings for more information about Zoom

2. Google Hangouts

Google Hangouts is a renowned product from Google. This group video chat app connects with a phone number or email address. Here you can join 25 participants in a single group video chat. You can make use of this platform to call mobile phones and landlines.

This service is free for the users within the U.S and Canada. It supports the Android version well when compared to iOS gadgets. You have to download Hangouts extension if you want to solve compatibility issues with desktop. This app splits its service into two modules namely ‘Chat’ and ‘Meet’. These modules are available for business users and the individuals can expect this feature after June 2020. You can make use of this app to make HD calls optimally. There is a limited number of video calls permitted in this platform. You can send text messages to the participants during the video call session without any difficulty.

Tips:
According to Google guidelines, Google Hangouts has evolved into 2 premium products: Google Chat includes direct messaging, group chat, and advanced features, such as threaded conversations, chatbots, and powerful search. While Google Meet includes high-fidelity group video calls, screen sharing, and live captioning. Depending on which edition of G Suite that you have, Meet might also include advanced features, such as up to 250 participants per meeting, meeting recordings, and in-domain live streaming.

3. Microsoft Teams

It is a group video chat app of Microsoft. This app assists in the teamwork of the organization. It establishes a secure connection between the participants to trigger effective communication. If you want to send private messages then this app permits you to share text messages for only one participant in the list easily. It is a business-oriented group video chat app runs on Windows, Android, and iOS gadgets effectively. It connects people using the Microsoft account. You can accommodate 300 participants in a meeting. You can enrich the productivity of the participants easily with the help of a comfortable environment. It offers you with automatic translation feature to connect with people across boundaries without any communication issues. This digital workplace embeds with Artificial Intelligence and Big Data processing concepts to serve the users in a better way.

Tips
Microsoft Teams free vs Microsoft Teams paid:
Feature Free Version Paid Version
Unlimited chat messages and search in Teams Yes Yes
Maximum participants 300 Unlimited, with an enterprise license
Apps and Office 365 Integrations Yes Yes
1:1 calling, group audio and video calls, channel meetings, screen sharing Yes Yes
Background blur on video calls Yes Yes
Scheduled meetings, meeting recordings, phone calls, and audio conferencing No Yes
Online and video conferencing meetings for up to 250 people. Online events for up to 10,000 No Yes

Part 2: For Personal Use—Friends Call, Chatting, or Mobile Socializing

If you are looking for some skype alternatives to meet friends, and family, then you can make use of the below programs as per the given instructions.

Apps at a glance(listed in no particular order):

1. WhatsApp

The WhatsApp video chat call is exclusively for personal use. You can accommodate only four persons in the group chat. You can connect with your friends using the phone number. Initially, you have to place a call with the one-to-one manner and later on add the participants to invite people in the group video chat. This feature is free and you do not have to pay for this functionality. This service includes only the data charges. This app supports Android and iOS gadgets and the Windows version does not support the video chat app feature. You can perform multitasking on this platform during the video chat. This app uses the front face camera while placing the call and it is up to the user to change the focus on the rear camera if required. You need an uninterrupted internet connection to establish flawless connectivity with your friends in the group chat.

2. FaceTime

It is an excellent video chat app for iOS users. This program does not suit Android and Desktop version. You can stimulate the video chat using the options in the iMessage platform. This app connects friends using iOS gadgets across boundaries. It is enough if you have a strong internet connection to enjoy flawless video chat using the FaceTime platform. This application allows nearly 32 participants in the group video chat. You can make use of filters, emoji, animoji, etc during the chat sessions. The participants can send texts with each other. The FaceTime app encrypts the conversation on this chat platform. You can add the participants by entering their name or phone number and tap the ‘+’ option. The speaker occupies the screen and the rest of the participants appear as small icons on the window. The image of the participants differs based on their participation in the chat. The image display varies with the idle and active participants in the session.

3. Houseparty

If you feel bored and want to chat with your friends then this app is the right fit. In this platform, you can connect with 8 people at a time. This app targets mostly young people and the participants can play games together. This program is compatible with Android, iOS, Windows, Mac, etc. There exists a Chrome extension to support the web browser. This app is in the control of Fortnite creator Epic Games. During the installation process of the Houseparty app, you have to add friends to the friend’s list. When you open this app, you can view the friend's list displaying online and offline notifications. You can start the video chat directly with online friends from this application. When you find an unlocked group chat in this app then you can join easily into this crew without any issues. This app has built-in games like Headups to engage the users during the group chat.

4. Google Duo

The Google Duo is a popular video chat app from Google. In this app, you will be able to connect twelve people in the group video chat. You can make video calls from Android and IOS gadgets easily. Open the app and hit the ‘Video call’ option. Then select the contact number to place the call. In this video chat app, Google implemented end-to-end encryption for security purposes. You can save the data usage by customizing ‘Date Save Mode’ in the ‘Settings’ option. This program allows you to place personalized messages during the chat session. Artificial Intelligence reduces the audio interruptions and ensures quality communication in the video chat. The Google Duo adds a new ad hoc to improve the video call quality. You can capture pictures during the video call and save it in your local drive. There are options to share the captured image with other participants in the group. The research team of Google Duo striving hard to increase the participant counts in the group video call.

5. Viber

The Viber app connects people with video chat using their phone number. You have to install this app and enter your phone number as a login process and the application scans your contact list. You can place video calls in your contacts using this app. Initially, the video call option was applicable only for the desktop version and now it became compatible with Android and iOS users. The Viber permits 100 participants in a group chat and it serves as one of the best skype alternative. The user has to make an audio call and the participant can switch over to a video call option easily. During the group chat session, you can move to different platforms like from mobile to desktop, etc. Incase if you place a video call to the non-Viber user then the Viber connects with the person using the ViberOut option but you have to pay for this call.

6. Facebook Messenger

Facebook opened a Messenger room to interact with 50 participants in a group video call. This app offers augmented filters to personalize the conversation. You have to make use of your Facebook account to make a video call. You can join participants who do not have a Facebook account without any issues. The video calls are free and there are no time limits. You can create messenger rooms easily and invite people quickly with excellent privacy settings. It supports desktop, Android, and iOS versions optimally. The users can lock the messenger room to prohibit the entry of anonymous participants. In case, if the room is unlocked then anyone who has the room link can enter into the chat group easily. The messenger room creator can take up the full control of the room and ensure a safe connection between the participants until the end of the group video chat.

Part 3: Which is the best skype alternative for you?

It is the right time to conclude the discussion on skype alternatives. This article serves you as an eye-opener comprising of a good collection of video chat apps. Depending on your needs you can choose the right fit and enjoy its outstanding functionalities. Most of the video chat apps ensure reliability and you can connect with people beyond boundaries without much difficulty. All the above-discussed apps provide the users with a comfortable platform to place a quality video chat app with their friends, family, and colleague.

The apps vary with the participant’s count, compatibility, and connection procedure. The outcomes of these programs are mostly similar. These group video chat apps are application-specific programs, which serves for unique requirements. You can choose the perfect tool according to the end-user. Do not be in a hurry while selecting the video chat apps. You should analyze the pros and cons of each app and try out the free version of the tool before making an official purchase.

Shanoon Cox
Shanoon Cox is a writer and a lover of all things video.