How to start a (video) call on Discord

How to start a (video) call on Discord

Once you get used to Discord, it’s hard to go back to other VoIP services. […]

A big part of Discord’s appeal lies in how good the call quality is. Discord was created because the founders were looking for a better VoIP platform for gamers to use in group games. But even if you are not raiding with friends, you can use Discord for voice and video calls. (This can be a good remedy, for example, in case of poor mobile phone reception. Getting into Discord is also quite easy, even if you have to make a few settings first.

Step 1: Make friends

In the desktop app (or in the web interface), you can send friend requests from this screen.

To start a call in Discord, you need to be friends with the person (or people) you want to talk to. You can send a friend request in one of two ways on the PC or mobile:

PCS

  • Go to your home screen by clicking on the Discord logo at the top left of your screen. In the left navigation bar that appears, click on Friends and then on the green Add Friend button. You need to know their Discord tag (example tag #0000, for example).
  • On a Discord server that you share with the person, click their username and then their user avatar. Click the green Send Friend Request button.

Mobile Phone

  • At the bottom of the app, tap the icon of a waving person. Then tap on the icon of a person with a plus sign in the upper right corner of the screen. You can then add people using one of three methods: by entering your Discord tag (for example, ExampleTag#0000), by using Nearby Scan, or by using the Find Friends feature. With the latter two methods, your friends must also be there for them to work.
  • On a Discord server that you share with the person, tap their user avatar, and then tap Add Friend.

Step 2: Start a call

On the PC, you can start a voice or video call using one of these icons.

Starting a call is pretty easy, especially since there is no real distinction between voice and video calls. In one method, the call is started only with audio, in the other with the image turned on for everyone.

PCS

Click on the Discord logo icon in the upper left and then on Friends in the left navigation bar. By default, the view shows friends who are online. Click on the icon with the three vertical dots and select Start Video call or Start Voice call. Alternatively, you can also open your direct messages with your friend and then click on the phone or video camera icon at the top.

For group calls, you must first create a group chat. The easiest way to do this is to click on the chat icon with the plus sign on the friends screen. You can also open your direct messages with a friend you want in the group, and then click on the icon of a person with a plus sign at the top of the screen. After starting a group chat, click on the phone or video camera icon at the top of the screen.

Mobile Phone

Swipe right at the bottom of your screen, then tap the icon of a waving person. Your friends list will be displayed. Tap the phone icon next to your friend’s name to start an audio call. (You can also enable video after the call starts.)

For group calls, you must first create a group chat. To do this, swipe right on your screen, and then tap on the icon of a waving person. Tap the icon of a chat icon with a plus sign at the top of the screen. You can also start a group chat from the Direct Messages screen or in your direct messages with a person you would like to have in your group. Once the group chat is open, tap the phone or video camera icon at the top of the screen.

What You Should Know About Discord Calls

Discord calls are very good, but you should always enter a service knowing the most important details. We have therefore put together a few things that will get you up and running.

  • Discord does not provide end-to-end encryption for voice and video calls. For this level of security, you need to stick to WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Signal or something similar.
  • Discord calls have no time restrictions, so you can make calls for as long as you want. However, you cannot sit in one call indefinitely until other people join; the system will boot you after a short time.
  • You can share your screen or broadcast a game/program to the call participants at 720p/30fps. For higher resolutions and 60fps, you need a Discord Nitro subscription.
  • As with other popular VoIP calling apps, video backgrounds are available for calls, but Discord standard users only get eight presets and a blur option. To get custom backgrounds, you need to subscribe to Nitro.
  • If your friends can’t hear you, check that your input and output devices are set correctly. Discord can change these randomly. Also make sure that you have not activated the push-to-talk function or, if you do so intentionally, that your key assignment is correct.

*Alaina Yee reports on desktop PCs, computer components, mini PCs and more for PCWorld. Her favorite item is an annual post that combines her two passions: bargain hunting and PC building.

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