In somewhat unsurprising news, Google has announced Android support for video chat and voice chat using Google Talk. This is something that iPhone users have had for a little while in FaceTime, however unlike FaceTime, the new voice and video chat features in Google Talk won’t be limited to WiFi connections.

No, this new capability means Android phone users can voice or video chat with other Android phone users, or with people using Google Talk on their PCs. Most importantly – chats are supported over 3G and 4G networks as well as WiFi. This means that those of you with generous data inclusions (which are becoming more common now in Australia) will be able to enjoy video chats without needing to be tethered to a WiFi hotspot.

Google says the features will be rolled out to Nexus S devices in updates coming over the next few weeks as part of Android 2.3.4. Other Android devices will receive the feature in the future, but the rollout schedule hasn’t yet been detailed.

The native Android chat app can also maintain a chat even if the video is interrupted. For example, if someone follows a link during a chat, audio will continue while video is interrupted.

Something very cool (and perhaps a little overdue) for Android 🙂

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Drew Freyling
9 years ago

Just installed 2.3.4 (oxygen rom) on my Desire. Seems good. Even though I think only the voice chat will be of use due to the lack of a front facing camera.

Opti
Opti
9 years ago

New gtalk 1.3 client with video works with varying degrees of success on few other phones running Gingerbread 2.3.x. i.e. Works on Galaxy S running 2.3.3 with some limitations: Can make calls but can’t receive (won’t ring); can see other person’s video in a video call but my video is not transmitted, defaults to speakerphone mode (can’t change it). More info here : http://goo.gl/XIkFy

Vanvin
Vanvin
9 years ago

doing video calls from phone to PC will be exciting. I just updated my nexus s to 2.3.4, I’ll try the video call with my pc tonight 🙂

Vanvin
Vanvin
9 years ago

doing video calls from phone to PC will be exciting. I just updated my nexus s to 2.3.4, I’ll try the video call with my pc tonight 🙂

Amos Shapira
Amos Shapira
9 years ago

My wife was doing Skype video to Brazil from Nelson bay beach on her Vodafone iPhone 4 about 6 months ago. We need Skype video for Android to make this useful.

Fonz
Fonz
9 years ago

I have a question… the paragraph says I can use it on 3G or 4G connection… why is it that when I try and video chat it asks me to connect to wifi?

Rob
Rob
9 years ago

Plans often give a price for video calls, eg 90c per minute or something. Android video chat appears to use internet instead, and would be counted as internet usage. How are these things different? And is this something still missing from Android?

Thanks,
Rob.

Chris Rowland
Reply to  Rob
9 years ago

Android video calls use data; you are correct. ‘Traditional’ video calls, the kind enjoyed by Nokia and other users when 3G networks first became popular, use circuit-switched data, and as such the quality is rather poor and the experience largely sucked.

To my knowledge, Android doesn’t have video calls of the kind used by Nokia and other handsets.