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How to Make Video Calls with Facebook Messenger

Facebook Messenger on Phone
DenPhotos/Shutterstock

Facebook allows families and friends to stay in touch no matter where they are in the world. Use the video-chat feature on Facebook Messenger to quickly connect with up to 50 people on most modern devices.

How to Use Video Chat on Facebook Messenger on Mobile

If you’re on an Android device, you can download the Messenger app directly from the Google Play Store. Apple provides the Messenger app for the iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch through the Apple App Store.

Facebook Messenger App in the Apple App Store

Once the app is installed on your smartphone or tablet, open it and tap the search bar to find the contact with whom you want to video chat. If you’ve previously sent messages to or called friends in Messenger, they’ll appear below the search bar.

Facebook Messenger App Home Screen

Select the person, and then tap the Video Chat icon at the top right.

Facebook Messenger Video Chat Button

When you receive a call, Messenger immediately notifies you, and you can accept or decline.

Facebook Messenger Receive Video Call

When you’re in the call, you’ll see your friend or family member in the center of the screen and yourself at the top right. The buttons at the top, from left to right, allow you to open a chat, broadcast your video chat to an available device, switch between the rear- and front-facing cameras, or disable your camera.

From the bottom row, you can change the color of your background, add friends to your video call, mute your microphone, or end the call.

Facebook Messenger Video Chat Interface Buttons

How to Use Video Chat on Facebook Messenger on Desktop

If you’re using a laptop with a built-in webcam or a desktop with an external webcam, you can video chat with any Facebook friend through Messenger.

Start by logging in to Facebook in your browser of choice. Click “Messenger” on the left of the Facebook home page.

New FB Interface Messenger

The link to Messenger is in generally the same place in the new layout (above) as it was in old layout (below).

Old FB Interface Messenger

Click the name or avatar of the person you want to call. Then, select the Video Chat icon at the top right to start your call.

When your friend answers, you’ll see her in the center of the screen and yourself at the bottom right. Click the Video Camera and Microphone icons to toggle your video and audio off or on.

Click the Monitor icon to share your screen. Press the red Phone Receiver icon to end the call.

Facebook Messenger Desktop Video Chat Interface

RELATED: How to Use a Digital Camera as a Webcam


Facebook Messenger’s video chat is a free, easily accessible option you might want to consider to keep in touch with friends and family.

Joel Cornell Joel Cornell
Joel Cornell has spent twelve years writing professionally, working on everything from technical documentation at PBS to video game content for GameSkinny. Joel covers a bit of everything technology-related, including gaming and esports. He's honed his skills by writing for other industries, including in architecture, green energy, and education.
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