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How to FaceTime on Android: Step-By-Step Guide

a person sitting on a couch and using facetime while smiling and waving

So, your friends are all in a group FaceTime, and you don't want to get left out. But you have an Android phone. When you picked your awesome new Android phone after were searching for the best phone deals, you might not have considered whether you could FaceTime on Android, and now you’re wondering if it’s even possible. The short answer: Yes, it is possible, but with limited functionality. 

While the FaceTime app is only available on Apple products, like iPhones and iPads, there is a way to join FaceTime calls with non-native devices, such as an Android phone. Note that we used the word join and not start – that's because you cannot initiate a FaceTime call from an Android phone such as a Galaxy S24 or Pixel 8. For that, you need an iPhone.

The method we’ll describe below might sound a little cumbersome, but it’s the only way to really make sure you don’t miss out on FaceTime with your friends. Of course, if it’s really too frustrating to deal with regularly, you can always try to persuade your friends and family to use a different video call app. We'll cover it all in this guide.

Can You FaceTime on Android?

Unfortunately, you can't actually start FaceTime from your Android device. You're limited to just joining a FaceTime call, which is already in progress. So, while it’s possible to be on a FaceTime call on your Android phone, it's not as easy as clicking the app icon and starting a video call. Why? Before we jump into the how-to, we want to set a little context for why FaceTiming on Android is complicated enough to require a full guide. 

Each type of device runs on different operating systems (OS). Apple uses iOS for iPhones, while Android OS is for Android phones. Unfortunately, each OS is custom-tailored to the native developer. For example, iOS is specifically designed to support iPhone and iPad interfaces and only lets you download apps via the Apple App Store, and comes with pre-installed native apps, like FaceTime. 

For that reason, FaceTiming on Android takes a little extra effort. 

How to FaceTime on Android 

Let's get right to your question: How can I use FaceTime on an Android? Once the FaceTime call has started, the host can send you an invitation link or code. From there, you can click the link and join the call from your Android.  

Keep in that because you're using an Android for an iOS app, there are some feature limitations during FaceTime calls:

  • You won't be able to share your screen with participants 
  • You can't use the Animoji features 
  • You can't access the camera effects 

Additionally, because you're not using a device native to iOS, the video and sound quality won't be as good, and you could experience call connectivity issues.  

How to Invite an Android User to a FaceTime Call

If you want your iPhone friends to be able to invite you to their FaceTime calls, there’s a little bit of setup work they’ll need to do. 

Note that if you’re doing a group FaceTime with other users who have Apple devices in addition to one or more Android users, iPhone users will be able to join the call directly from the shared FaceTime link without having to wait in the waiting room for acceptance. You can also start a FaceTime and add iPhone contacts, and they’ll be alerted on an incoming call and can join. From there, you can run through steps 1-8 below to add Android users.

Here’s a step-by-step tutorial on how to FaceTime from Android to iPhone that you, an Android user, can send your iPhone friends so you can be invited to their calls.

  1. Open the FaceTime App (iPhone user/host): Launch the FaceTime app. If you plan on having multiple iPhone participants, click "New FaceTime" and invite them to the call first. If not, go straight ahead and find the "Create Link" button to invite Android users. 
  2. Tap on the create link button: Click the link. From there, a screen will pop up with numerous options. 
  3. Create a FaceTime name and decide how to share: Fill in the "Add Name" in the FaceTime link, then decide how you want to share it with the Android user. There are various ways to share the code: text, email, calendar, social media (Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram), or copy and paste it into a message or file. 
  4. Share the FaceTime link: After deciding how you want to share, click to share the FaceTime link, then hit send.  
  5. Find active calls: After you've sent the FaceTime link to the Android user, go to your "Upcoming" tab in the FaceTime app. You'll see active call links (like the one you sent to your Android user friend). 
  6. Configure call settings: Click on the call link for the active FaceTime, then choose your microphone and camera settings from the screen prompt.  
  7. Join the call: After selecting your call settings, hit the green "Join" button on the screen to enter the FaceTime call. 
  8. Accept waiting users: Once you're in, wait for the Android user to access the link you've sent. From there, they'll go to the waiting room for you to accept them. Hit the checkmark next to their name and start your conversation. 

How to Accept a FaceTime Call From Android 

From the Android user's point of view, here's how to accept a FaceTime call from the host.

Prerequisite: Make sure you have the latest browser version of Microsoft Edge or Google Chrome on your Android and a solid Internet connection (either cellular or through Wi-Fi).

  1. Open the app your friend used to send the FaceTime link .
  2. Find and select the link (your default internet browser will open automatically).
  3. You'll be prompted to submit a name into the call. Type it in the box, then hit "Continue" in the waiting room.
  4. From there, the host will have to let you in.
  5. After being approved by the host, you can now have your FaceTime conversation. 

FaceTime for Android Alternatives 

Maybe you feel FaceTiming with Android is too tedious and requires too many steps. In that case, persuading your iPhone friends to switch to third-party video conferencing tools is your best bet. Here are some excellent Android alternatives to FaceTime.

Facebook Messenger

Facebook Messenger Rooms is a great free video call option for iOS and Android. Setup is a breeze as long as you already have a Facebook account. You can use just about any device, including Android phones, iPhones, and computers, for video conferencing. It also includes cool features like:

  • Watch together: Lets you and your friends do virtual movie nights and watch parties.
  • Messenger rooms: Allows you to host mass calls directly from group chats.
  • Live sharing: Lets you screen share from your iPhone or Android device.

As for the cons, you must have a Facebook account to access Messenger Rooms. By doing so, you agree to Meta’s privacy policy, which lets them track some of your data while using the app. Some people also feel the interface is clunky and tough to navigate. 

Whatsapp

Whatsapp, also owned by Meta, is a free and intuitive messaging and video call tool renowned for its security. Through its commitment to privacy, the video and chat conversations are fully encrypted — so there is no need to worry about eavesdropping. After creating an account, you can host calls with up to 32 participants from iOS, Android, or web platforms. There are also cool features like:

  • View once: This lets you temporarily share content or information on a call.
  • Disappearing messages: This feature allows you to send photo or video messages that disappear after being viewed, similar to a Snapchat photo.

While minimal, there are some cons to WhatsApp. For example, video chatting is limited to just mobile devices, so you can’t access a call via computer. Some users wish they could customize the interface more by rearranging the icons and menu options to meet their navigation preferences. Others also find files and content sent in the video app lose quality from the original.  

Skype

Skype is a solid alternative to FaceTime for iOS, Android, and web users. It also supports Windows platforms and even runs on Linux systems if you're a true techy. A Skype account is free; video calls allow you to add up to 50 people. Another plus — thanks to how long the app has been around (since 2003), the interface has drastically evolved, so it's super easy to use. Some cool Skype features include:

  • Live translation: Does real-time translation of spoken words during conversations in dozens of languages. 
  • Meet now: This lets you create temporary meeting links where participants don't need a Skype account to join. 

Skype's main downside is performance glitches. The app can sometimes be slow and cause connectivity issues during video calls. 

Google Meet 

If you love Gmail and other Google products, Google Meet is an excellent FaceTime alternative. It's free and accessible to Android, iOS, or web users, and like many Google apps, it does not require a steep learning curve. In fact, the interface is highly similar to its native tools, making navigation simple and straightforward. The app is well known for its clear, crisp video image and excellent sound quality. It also has features like the following: 

  • AI-powered noise cancelation: It cuts out background noise happening on video calls. 
  • Video encryption security: End-to-end encryption for all calls and participant data.

As for Google Meet's cons, the only real issue is that video participants have no waiting room option. Some people may be uncomfortable with users quickly entering a video call without much warning. 

Zoom

While primarily used in business, Zoom is also an excellent video-calling tool for friends and family to catch up. The app has a free option for forty-minute calls and is supported on every platform, including Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, and most web browsers. Zoom stands out for its collaborative features, including: 

  • Zoom whiteboard: Interactive virtual whiteboard for discussing ideas. 
  • Live polling: Gives real-time feedback or Q&A from participants.

A big downside of Zoom is that the free plan is limited to just 40 minutes of video call time. Furthermore, over the years, it has added so many features and icons that the interface can get clogged and tricky to use.

The Bottom Line 

We understand – you don't want to be left out of the conversation just because you have an Android cell phone. While it requires a few extra steps, joining FaceTime calls on your Android is possible, though starting FaceTime calls is not. If you prefer not to go through that hassle, then plenty of third-party video calling tools, like Facebook Messenger, Whatsapp, and Zoom, don't discriminate based on your phone's OS – you’ll just have to convince your friends and family to swap.

On the other hand, maybe it's time to make the switch to an iPhone so that you can experience all that FaceTime has to offer. If that's you, we've got you covered. Our free, unbiased Phone Deal Finder below is here to help. Answer a few quick questions, and it can show you the best phone deals from top carriers based on your needs. 

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