Elias Pelcastre

You don´t have to be in the US to try BBM´s new video calls

It looks like BBM beat WhatsApp to the punch; the Canadian mobile messenger now comes with video calls. But there´s a caveat, though: you can only access the feature in the US and, you guessed it, Canada. At least for now, according to the app´s description.

When there is a will, there is a way: I managed to try BBM´s video calls outside said countries. All I had to do was turn on a VPN on both the sender and receiver and voilá; I was having a video call with myself.

I´ve got to admit my test was relatively quick, as I could listen to a high pitch on both my iPhone and iPad whenever I talked. But I can tell you this: video quality was excellent, and the sound, apart from that hellish noise I mention, was pretty good too.

After closing BBM´s app on my iPhone, and with no VPN turned on, the video icon in the top right disappeared. It remained active in my iPad, where I left BBM in the background. That goes to tell that you need a VPN to at least turn on BBM´s video capabilities. (I set Ark VPN back on and the icon re-appeared next to the “private chat” button.)

BBM video lets you use both front and back cameras and mute yourself or the caller. You get a big “beta” label on the bottom of a call, but things are pretty straight forward. Select a contact, tap the video button, and, granting they have the latest BBM version, start video chatting.

I´m not a big BBM fan, but find it difficult to believe the Canadian company beat Facebook´s WhatsApp to release a feature that is now part of Zuckerberg´s social app. Besides, does anyone use BBM these days?

What do you think of BBM video calls? Do you use the platform? Please leave your thoughts below, and thank you for reading eliaspelcastre.com.

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