The announcement has concluded, and we now know what all the hub-bub was about: Skype-powered Facebook video calling.
How often do you see yourself using Facebook video calling? Let us know.
We thought we’d give you a comprehensive walkthrough on how you can get Skype-powered Facebook video calling today. No need to wait on the roll out to hit your account.
(Please note: I’m using a Mac and my browser is Chrome, if the process appears slightly different than yours.)
With the first step, you can wait for the service to roll out to you, which could take a couple of weeks, or you can simply visit the following URL to get started: http://www.facebook.com/videocalling. Click on “Get Started” to, you guessed it, get started.
After you click the button, you’re greeted with an oversized buddy list, with a message asking you “Who do you want to call?” It also says that you have to choose a friend that has the available “green dot” icon beside their name. They make no mention of it here, but you’re also able to click on friends that are currently idle, and video call them.
Once you have your friend selected, click as you would to initiate a chat. A lightbox appears, asking you to complete a “quick, one-time setup”, just click the setup button. You’ll then see the chat window, that most of you should be familiar with, a new camera button has been added. Click the button, you should see a message like the one featured below. Follow the steps listed within the dialog box.
You should see a new in-Facebook popup window, this one asking you what do do with the downloaded file. The one for Chrome is featured below, the one you see will look different, depending upon which browser you’re using.
After you allow the file to install you should see a Facebook progress bar which indicates how much longer until Facebook video chat is installed. It should install rather quickly, and you’re just about done.
After the installation is complete, a box should appear that indicates that you’re calling the friend that you previously selected.
If all goes well, you should see a video chat window featuring your friend, with your camera feed in the top corner. (Hopefully the person you decide to chat with looks a little happier than Rafael does)
That’s pretty much it.
Do you think you’ll utilize Facebook video chat? Do you think it will overshadow Google+‘s Hangouts?
UPDATE: If you’re currently on a Linux machine, you’ll be greeted with several error messages if you try to utilize Facebook’s new video calling, as Linux isn’t supported.
It’s unclear at this time if Facebook has any plans to support Linux with video calling, but we’d be surprised if they didn’t at some point.