Rumor: FaceTime group video calls to debut in iOS 11

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2017
Potentially fulfilling a long-standing iPhone and iPad feature request, FaceTime might finally support group video calls with iOS 11, a report claimed on Friday.




Following the release cycle of past iOS debuts, iOS 11 will be announced in June and make "social" elements like FaceTime and Messages a focus, Israeli site The Verifier said, citing sources familiar with iOS development. In particular, group video calls are supposedly set for introduction in the next-generation operating system.

According to sources, users will have to initiative a group FaceTime video call from a group chat in Messages. Up to five people should be able to participate.

A June announcement would coincide with Apple's annual Worldwide Developers Conference. The event typically focuses on OS updates planned to ship later in the year, giving developers an early glimpse at them and a chance to build or update apps with support.

The Verifier is a relatively unknown site, but group video calls are already a common feature in other iOS communications apps such as Google Hangouts and Microsoft's Skype.

FaceTime has been limited to one-to-one communication since its 2010 debut, despite improvements in processor speeds and network bandwidth. That Apple has dragged its feet on multi-user video chat integration has given breathing room to third-party apps, even though FaceTime is for many the de facto video calling solution for iOS and macOS.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 16
    Well, it's about time!
    jonagoldDeelroncalilostkiwibestkeptsecret
  • Reply 2 of 16
    About time!  I would guess they finally developed a protocol that doesn't infringe on someone's IP (intellectual property)?
    SpamSandwichDeelroncalilostkiwiwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 3 of 16
    Just bizarre its taken so long.
    calilostkiwitallest skil
  • Reply 4 of 16
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,594member
    Hey - iChat AV is back!  Check out the chat below including Scott Forestall
    edited January 2017
  • Reply 5 of 16
    calicali Posts: 3,495member
    paxman said:
    Hey - iChat AV is back!  Check out the chat below including Scott Forestall
    It's amazing how much of that tech translated to iPhone and how Snapchat has a monopoly on real time photo effects now.

    I remember years ago iPhone users wanting photo booth for iPhone. 
  • Reply 6 of 16
    fallenjtfallenjt Posts: 3,976member
    Been waiting for this. Great to have conference FaceTime!
  • Reply 7 of 16
    paxman said:
    Hey - iChat AV is back!  Check out the chat below including Scott Forestall
    God I miss Steves presentations. 
    StrangeDaysbrian green
  • Reply 8 of 16
    AlinAlin Posts: 5member
    And maybe to possibility to go from FaceTime video to FaceTime audio without hanging out! 
    StrangeDayslostkiwipatchythepirate
  • Reply 9 of 16
    Alin said:
    And maybe to possibility to go from FaceTime video to FaceTime audio without hanging out! 
    this. have had a lot of accidental FT videos calls when we really wanted audio only. 
    lostkiwipatchythepirate
  • Reply 10 of 16
    paxman said:
    Hey - iChat AV is back!  
    Yes I hope macOS will have it at the same time. I hope iChat theatre will also be back and for me, scripting in FaceTime just like In iChat but I am very afraid this one will be left out.
  • Reply 11 of 16
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,115member
    Man, Steve would have so much fucking fun at these. Keynotes were really his forté, so comfortable, charismatic, and at ease. I have yet to see anyone match his presentation skills from ANY tech company, even though it's obvious many try insanely hard to emulate him (Microsoft keynotes, etc)
  • Reply 12 of 16
    Yes I hope macOS will have it at the same time. I hope iChat theatre will also be back and for me, scripting in FaceTime just like In iChat but I am very afraid this one will be left out.
    I doubt it. Apple doesn't care about feature parity between OS X and iOS anymore.
  • Reply 13 of 16
    entropysentropys Posts: 1,617member
    Group video would be very desirable from a work point of view. FaceTime performance is superior to Skype, but at least Skype has group chat.  Also Skype is Multiplatform.

    if Apple want iPad sales to pick up again, it really needs to work on productivity and integration in the workplace. So sure, group chat FaceTime, but make it definitely work with Windows too (maybe via Skype to get around the IT gatekeepers at workplaces, who would never support a second protocol, especially an Apple one. I am constantly fighting wars to replace iPads with Surface pros. It will be game over for me once Surface Pros get GPS). 
    iOS 11 will be announced in June and make "social" elements like FaceTime and Messages a focus, Israeli site The Verifier said, citing sources familiar with iOS development.

    More 'social'? I just can't wait for the emojis Cue and co will Cook up next.😬😝  How about serious investment in improving productivity and workplace integration? Right off the top of my head:
    • Group chat FaceTime with Skype compatibility (heck only because it's on topic)
    • multiuser accounts
    • ability to query a file system within apps and through some kind of manager app but open to something really clever
    • More window frames or ability to switch between app and app windows more easily
    • Easily copy and paste multiple files into mail messages ( in fact generally ios10 mail Interface is actually confusing to a lot of people)
    • USBC port
    • mouse/trackpad input 
    • something to make it harder to lose an Apple pencil
    Yeah some of that is hardware but Apple used to be the company that made that hardware and software all work together in magical ways. It is well past time it remembered that. Like the Airpods, a great example of what Apple can be, but something bigger. Needs more bigness.

  • Reply 14 of 16
    bonobobbonobob Posts: 160member
    Alin said:
    And maybe to possibility to go from FaceTime video to FaceTime audio without hanging out! 
    this. have had a lot of accidental FT videos calls when we really wanted audio only. 
    It would also be useful when you're not getting enough bandwidth to support video, but enough for audio only.
  • Reply 15 of 16
    Just bizarre its taken so long.
    Without knowing the technological and other boundary conditions I find such statements always a bit harsh.
    williamlondon
  • Reply 16 of 16
    Well, it's about time!

    It's about (Face)time!!
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