Stay Connected and Stay Well with Video Chats

With the need for social distancing during this challenging time, Watermark Retirement Communities is committed to keeping our residents connected with friends and family.

Previous Watermark University classes on tech tips and video chats are coming in handy, and we’re revisiting those steps for phone-based video chats and offering assistance in conducting the calls. Whether or not you reside in a Watermark community, everyone can benefit from technology to keep in touch and make new memories to last a lifetime.

Family and friends can prepare for a successful call with a few easy tips:

  • Choose a neutral, uncluttered background.
  • Select a quiet location and use earbuds if you have them to reduce noise.
  • Be mindful of lighting on your face for a clear image.
  • Maintain eye contact just as you would in person and hold your camera at eye level.
  • Stay safe with shared phones. Use a gentle wipe that has 70 percent isopropyl alcohol on your phone and phone case.

What’s the best way to place a video call? FaceTime, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp are among the most popular platforms to engage in a video call with friends and family, and are available for use on a variety of devices. Here’s a quick refresher for using some popular options for video calls.

FaceTime (Apple iOS devices)

To make a FaceTime call, you need the person’s phone number or email address. There are a few ways to make a FaceTime call:

  • In the FaceTime app, tap the plus button, and type the person’s phone number or email address. Tap the number or address, then tap Audio or Video.
  • If you have the person’s phone number or email address saved in your Contacts, you can start typing their name and tap the name when it appears. Then tap Audio or Video.
  • You can start a FaceTime video call from your iPhone during a phone call. Tap the FaceTime icon in the Phone app to switch to FaceTime.

Take advantage of Apple’s Group FaceTime option, where you can chat with up to 32 people at once assuming they all have Apple devices. For more information, visit Apple Support.

Chat in Facebook Messenger (Android and Apple iOS devices)

If the person you want to talk to is also a Facebook Messenger user, you can initiate a video or audio call with them through the app.

To video chat with one person:

  • From Chats, open a conversation with the person you want to video chat.
  • Tap video icon.

To video chat with a group:

  • From Chats, open a group conversation with the people you want to video chat.
  • Tap video icon.

If you’re using Windows:

  • Open the conversation with the person or group you want to video chat.
  • Click video icon.

To end a video call, tap the end call button. For more details, visit the Facebook Help Center.

WhatsApp Messenger (Android and Apple iOS devices)

WhatsApp is a free messaging that provides voice and video calls to your friends and family, even if they’re in another country. WhatsApp voice and video calls use your phone’s Internet connection, not the voice minutes on your cell phone plan. WhatsApp is available on Google Play for Android and other smartphones and in the App Store for iOS devices. To learn more, visit WhatsApp.

Whatever option you choose, have fun, learn something new and use technology to bridge the miles, so you can communicate and stay connected with friends and loved ones. Stay well, everyone.

Editor’s note: For those with loved ones at a Watermark community, contact the community to arrange a phone or video call with your loved one. For residents without video capability on their own phones, we’re happy to provide tablets and phones, and rest assured we follow all safety and sanitizing precautions.

Be sure to visit our Inform & Inspire page for more thought-provoking content.

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