FaceTime was introduced together with iPhone 4. It was the first iPhone provided with a front camera for taking selfies and video call. Apple claimed that Facetime has a better video quality than the other mobile video call options. It was one of the best features of iPhone 4 and an Apple’s best marketing asset at that time.
At first, Facetime app could only be used through WiFi network. One year later, users were able to start using Facetime through carrier network as well. The app had a simple appearance with interesting video call feature. Facetime inspired the other platforms because it displayed the video all over the screen. Even, the Skype couldn’t compete with this app.
Moreover, Facetime has now replaced the iChat app on Mac for making a video call between iOS devices and Mac. Unfortunately, its features inside have never changed ever since it came for the first time, 6 years ago. It actually has a potential to get better, especially if they consider their active users. iPhone and iPad active users have reached 1 billion devices. What Apple should do to make Facetime a primary video call platform for iPhone users?
1. Integrate with iMessage
Nowadays, messaging apps cannot be separated from video call apps. Skype and WhatsApp are examples of apps that combine chat and video call on their messaging platform. I think, it’s time for Apple to follow those two apps. Integrating Facetime with iMessage seems like a great idea.
2. Where are the new features?
Apple has added many new features to iMessage on iOS 10, but not for Facetime. As if Apple doesn’t care about it. In fact, people love the messaging apps integrated with video call and the ones that come with many interesting features, such as Snapchat, Skype, etc. Skype alone currently has a real-time translation feature which can be used when we are using video call. Isn’t it interesting? It seems Microsoft will keep adding the best features for their chat and video call app. When will Apple do the same thing?
3. Conference video call
Before the Facetime came, Mac already had a video call app, called iChat. This app allows us to conduct a video call up to 4 users in different locations at once. I wonder why Facetime is not able to do that? As a matter of fact, this is one of the favourite features in the business world for telemeeting. If Apple adds this feature to Facetime, it can be one of teleconference apps in many companies.
4. Chat while having a video call
I think it would be interesting if we were are able to chat while having a video call. This feature is useful if we need to type words that are difficult to say, like a word taken from a foreign language. It’s better to use this feature on Mac, but it also suitable for iPad users.
5. Video Bot
This concept was introduced for the first time by Microsoft on their Skype platform. It allows you to interact with the robot through a live video. For certain services, it’s quite helpful because the robot is set to understand the context we are going to ask. Apple, who has developed AI and Siri will be able to adopt this feature on Facetime. It will make Facetime more attractive for users.