How to Video Chat and Conference on Your TV?
Video chat on TV with Phone, Xbox, PlayStation, Zoom, Facebook, WhatsApp and more
Published: 27th Apr 2020
Video chat and conference applications and platforms have been around for a while.
But they have only recently become necessities.
In the post-COVID-19-world, video chat applications have become a cornerstone of our sanity, facilitating both professional and social connections.
Most people video chat and conference through their smartphones, which isn’t always ideal. There are several issues with video chatting over phones:
That’s why you need to start holding video chats and conference calls through your TV screens!
Chatting with friends, family, and colleagues over large TV screens will be a lot more comfortable because you’ll see everyone in the conference call clearly, and you won’t have to hold the TV at arm’s length!
But how can you video chat and conference on a TV?
Well, when video calling on TV, there are two sets of considerations:
In this article, we give you an overview of all the different ways in which you can video chat and conference on your TV.
Types of Platforms and Devices Used to Video Chat and Conference on TV
When considering how you’ll video chat on your TV, you must consider the platforms and devices. The following is an overview of the different platforms and devices you can use to video chat or conference on your TV.
Option 1: Smart TV with an Integrated Camera
The easiest and most convenient way to video chat or conference on your TV is to get a Smart TV with an integrated web camera.
Most Smart TVs with web cameras have some kind of pre-installed video chat application. As such, all you have to do is find the app on your Smart TV, login, and start video chatting. The in-built web camera will instantly detect you and allow you to video chat. You won’t need to connect any cables, use third-party devices, or buy additional cameras.
Prior to June 2016, there were many Smart TVs with built-in cameras which had a pre-installed Skype application. One such model is Panasonic TC-PVT60. Along with its pop-up camera with face-recognition, it also had Skype to provide for a hassle-free video chat. Besides Panasonic, Sony, LG, Toshiba, and many others also had TV models similar to this.
Unfortunately, in June 2016, Microsoft decided to stop supporting Skype for TVs, essentially killing the app for anyone who owned such a TV. A pretty unpopular move in the eyes of the owners of not-so-cheap TVs. Since July 1st 2016, the TV Skype app wouldn’t work on their TV sets anymore. End of story.
As mentioned above, the greatest drawback of Smart TVs with integrated cameras is that they’re insanely expensive. While Smart TVs have become mainstream, Smart TVs with integrated cameras are still far from the norm. Smart TVs with integrated cameras generally cost thousands of dollars. Furthermore, most people don’t have much of an incentive to replace their existing television set with a Smart TV with an integrated camera.
Pros and Cons of Smart TVs with Built-In Cameras
Option 2: TV + Web Camera
|See a selection of the best Web cams for your TV on Amazon|
If you have a Smart TV but not an integrated camera, you can purchase a separate web camera for your TV. You can purchase a Smart TV camera compatible with your TV’s make and model. Most Smart TV web cameras have pre-installed video chat and conference applications. As such, once you attach the web camera over your existing TV, just start your video chat app to begin talking to friends and family.
Check best offer for Facebook Portal TV on Amazon
is a smart web camera for your TV designed by Facebook. Like other TV web cameras, Portal TV has to be attached over your existing TV and connected using an HDMI cable. Facebook Portal is by far the best option for a TV webcam.
Facebook Portal TV has some pretty impressive features:
Facebook Portal TV is also extremely easy to install. The following is an overview of how you can install Portal TV:
Another impressive feature has recently been introduced to Facebook’s Portal TV, Portal +, and the Portal Mini – the ability to natively use the Zoom App. Although Facebook has its own video calling software already integrated into the Facebook platform, the addition of Zoom makes video conferencing more convenient.
The ability of Zoom to connect with different platforms like PCs, mobiles, and compatible smart TV’s makes it easier to connect with others. You can now set up a video conference with other Zoom users without having to rely on further gadgets other than your Portal TV. With Portal TV’s auto pan and focus camera, you can create more dynamic Zoom meetings.
To install Zoom on your Facebook Portal device, you’ll need an active Zoom account. If you don’t have one, you can create one for free on their signup page.
Setting up Zoom on your portal device is as simple as going to the Portal App page on your Portal TV and searching for the Zoom app. Once installed, sign in with your Zoom account to enable the app on your Portal device. If you’re installing Zoom on your own, the process should complete automatically once you’ve signed in. If a room has been provisioned to you by your company, you can select it from the menu to enter it.
It’s also important to set a lock passcode on the Zoom app on your Portal TV so that you can prevent unauthorized use when you’re away from the screen. Once you’ve signed in to your Zoom account for the first time, Zoom will ask for a passcode. You can select Screen Lock to enter this code now or choose Skip to do it at a later time.
Once the passcode has been entered, you can enable auto-lock to activate after a certain period of inactivity. If you don’t do so, you’ll have to manually lock Zoom whenever you leave the room. To enable auto-lock, follow these steps:
To activate manual screen lock, go to the Portal Home screen. On the lower right-hand corner of the screen, there should be a lock icon. Tapping on this should lock the device.
|See best offer for Logitech cam on Amazon|
is a web camera that’s attached over your existing TV using the clasp system.
TV Cam has the following features:
|See the best offer for AUKEY FHD Webcam on Amazon|
Kraydel Konnect has the following features:
Once you install all of the Konnect devices, it’s extremely easy to use. In fact, it has been designed to allow grandparents to remain connected to the rest of their families — though you may have to install the device for them.
However, Kraydel Konnect has one major drawback. It only allows you to video call other Konnect devices. It doesn’t have pre-installed third-party applications. As such, if you get it for your grandparents, you’ll also have to get it for everyone else they want to contact.
The following is a quick overview of how you can video call with Kraydel Konnect:
Pros and Cons of Buying Web Cameras
Option 3: TV + TV Camera + Third-Party Devices
Do you want to video call your friends, family, and colleagues, using a wide range of video call platforms? These days, people aren’t restricted to one or even two video calling platforms. Some of your family members may want to chat on WhatsApp, and some may prefer another similar service. Your colleagues may want to chat on Zoom while your friends may want to collectively get together in Houseparty.
As such, a web camera may not prove sufficient, and you may need third-party devices that are compatible with such applications. You should carefully research the various devices that offer third-party video call and conference applications, such as Blu-Ray Players, Chromecast, etc. You should also note that connecting a third-party device and a web camera to your existing TV will be expensive. As such, you should only consider this option if you already have a third-party device.
Blu-ray players are relatively affordable devices that play Blu-ray videos, DVDs, and CDs. While Blu-ray players are generally meant to play videos, some of them may also have a pre-installed video calling application. is one example of a Blu-ray player with in-built Skype compatibility. Unfortunately, Microsoft stopped supporting Skype for TVs in June 2016, so the feature became obsolete. This could prove to be useful information for someone’s trying to sell you a Skype-enabled BR player.
We would advise against purchasing a Blu-ray player for the sole purpose of video calling. Blu-ray players are fairly restrictive because people rarely use Blu-ray discs anymore, and they don’t offer great functionality. However, if you already have a Blu-ray player with a video calling feature, you can use it in combination with your TV and web camera.
Xbox One also serves as a Blu-ray player because you can play DVDs, CDs, and Blu-ray discs. Xbox One also allows you to play all of the latest video games or stream content on platforms like Netflix, YouTube, HBO, etc.
Most importantly, Xbox One comes with pre-installed Skype and a separate Kinect sensor that serves as a TV camera. As such, you can connect the Xbox One and the Kinect sensor to your TV to video call friends and family using Skype and other video call applications.
The greatest advantage of using Xbox One is that it serves a lot of utility beyond video calling or video games.
also allows you to video call. However, you shouldn’t purchase an Xbox 360 for the sole purpose of video calling other people. Xbox 360 isn’t compatible with Skype or other third-party video call applications.
If you want to video call using Xbox 360, you’ll need to use the Kinect Sensor device, which comes with the primary console. You’ll have to attach the Kinect Sensor over your TV and install the Xbox 360. Once that’s done, you can use the Kinect Sensor camera to video call others who also have the same device. As such, if you already have an Xbox 360, you can communicate with others who also have a Kinect Sensor.
Once you’ve fulfilled all the requirements, you can video call your friends who also have a PlayStation Network account. From the menu, you can start a chat session with one of your friends. Once they accept your chat invitation, you can video call them through the PlayStation Eye connected to your TV.
|See best offer for Amazon Fire Stick on Amazon|
is one of the most affordable means of converting a regular TV to a smart TV. It’s one of the most popular Smart TV devices and gives you access to an incredibly wide range of applications, including Skype and other video call applications like and .
It’s worth noting that the fact Microsoft stopped supporting Skype in 2016, doesn’t affect Fire TV Stick. Reason being it uses the Skype app made for Android, not the specialized TV-native app.
You have to insert the Fire Stick device into your TVs HDMI port. Once you insert the Fire Stick device, you can surf through hundreds of applications. You can stream content through applications like Netflix, play music through applications like Amazon Music, and video call through applications like Skype.
However, Amazon Fire Stick doesn’t come with a web camera. As such, you’ll need to purchase one of the web cameras we mentioned earlier in this article. Once you’ve installed the web camera and the Fire Stick, you can install Skype or any other video call application.
Option 4: Casting and Mirroring SmartPhone, Tablet, or Laptop to Your TV
Casting is the process with which you wirelessly stream content or make video calls on your phone, tablet, or laptop and then cast that content to your TV. As such, you can make a video call from your smartphone and cast it to the TV. You don’t need to install a separate web camera to your TV because you can simply use your laptop, tablet, or phone’s camera. The following are some of the most popular methods to cast video calls from smartphone to TV.
(Phone or Tablet)
However, to use this application, you’ll need the following:
The following is a brief overview of how Video & TV Cast works:
is a device that allows you to use your phone, laptop, or tablet as a remote control through which you can cast your video calls and content to your TV screen. As such, you can use any video call application downloaded from the Google Play Store, be it WhatsApp, Zoom, Skype, or any other.
To cast video calls using Google Chromecast, you’ll need the following:
The following is an overview of how Google Chromecast works:
AirPlay is a native feature used by Apple devices, such as iPhones, iPads, Macbooks, and . AirPlay allows you to stream content and share a screen between different Apple TVs or AirPlay 2-compatible smart TVs, such as Samsung FHD/HD 4, 5 Series, Samsung The Serif Series, etc.
AirPlay allows you to cast video calls from any iOS-compatible application to your TV screen. AirPlay is the best casting option for those who exclusively have Apple devices, but it’s not suitable for Android or Windows users.
To cast video calls using AirPlay, you’ll need the following:
The following is an overview of how AirPlay works:
Pros and Cons of Casting Screen to TV
Best Video Chat and Conference Apps
No matter which method you use to video call on your TV, you’ll need to use certain applications. You can think of this as highways and cars — “highways” are the methods and devices mentioned in the previous section; the “vehicles” are the video chat and conference apps you use in those “highways.”
As such, even once you decide which combination of devices you want to use, you’ll still need to figure out which application will serve your purpose best. In some cases, you won’t have a lot of options. A lot of SmartTVs and third-party devices only give you one or a few options. However, if you’re casting your phone or computer on the TV, you have an abundance of choices.
The following is a brief overview and compatibility information of some of the most popular video chat and conference apps available.
Microsoft’s is one of the oldest and most reliable video calling platforms. Skype has regular chatting features as well, but it’s a no-frills video calling application that excels in its primary function. The free Skype account allows you to hold one-on-one video calls, with a cap of four hours per call and 100 hours per month. That’s enough for most casual users. However, if you want to extend those hours or hold conference video calls with multiple people, you’ll need a Skype premium membership. The premium membership allows you to video call with up to 10 people simultaneously.
is currently one of the most popular video call and conference applications for businesses because it’s extremely reliable and has great web integration. Businesses use Zoom because it has a wide range of web conferencing and collaboration features, such as scheduled messages, screen share with others, whiteboarding, co-annotation, etc. With Zoom, you don’t just have the option of video calling each other, but you can also share your computer screens for demonstrations. The Free Zoom account allows you to access meetings with 100 participants, but there’s a 40-minute cap on such meetings. Depending on the size of your enterprise or organization, you can also opt for the paid Pro, Business, or Enterprise plans. The biggest issue with Zoom, however, is a wide range of regarding the sale of personal data.
is the best video calling application for those interacting within an Apple ecosystem. As an Apple application, it’s only available in other Apple devices. However, it seamlessly allows you to FaceTime video call any of your contacts who also have Apple devices. With Group FaceTime, you can video call up to 32 people at once for no additional cost.
is one of the most popular instant messaging applications available. Since WhatsApp isn’t primarily made for video calls, it has a fairly rudimentary video call feature. You can video call a maximum of four people at once. However, initiating the group video call is pretty simple. You can create a group of four and hit the video call button. Alternatively, you can call one of your contacts and then add three more members. While WhatsApp’s video call feature is pretty basic, it makes up for that with accessibility because almost everyone is on WhatsApp.
is Google’s native video call application. It allows you to place high-quality video calls from your phone, tablet, computer, or compatible smart displays. Google Duo, unlike all other video call platforms, is meant only for video and voice calls. You can either make video/voice calls, or you can send video/voice messages. But you can’t send text messages. You can hold group video calls and conferences with up to 12 people.
is a “face-to-face social network platform.” It’s a video call app that’s meant to be used by a group of friends and not in an official capacity. With Houseparty, you can hold group video calls with several people together. The application also includes a wide range of party games that you can enjoy. As such, Houseparty is the perfect video call app to socialize with your friends while social distancing.
is a popular application used by workstations for online communications. It allows you to create groups and tasks for different users across the enterprise. Slack video conference allows you to communicate with multiple members simultaneously, and you can also share your screen to show what you’re working on.
is yet another Google platform that’s often used by workspaces and offices for video conferences and group chats. However, Google Hangouts isn’t very popular, and it never really took off strongly enough to gain a footing.
is a video conference and meeting platform with which you can either start or join a meeting. Once you start a meeting, you can share the link for a specific time and have your employees join the meeting through that link. The app also provides screen sharing features, which allows you to demonstrate on your computer by sharing the screen. It also has a whiteboard feature with which you can create illustrations and graphics to demonstrate points. Furthermore, you can also swap the presenter so different people can take turns presenting during the meeting.
is a video conferencing and screen sharing application for digital workstations. With this application, you can set up video conferences, group discussions, video chats with individuals, event live streams, and meetings. You can also share your screen with others to make demonstrations and utilize various other professional features. There’s no free version available, but the standard version can host up to 50 participants.
is a web-hosted platform for online meetings, video conferences, and screen sharing. It allows you to instantly join meetings using any devices. You can also turn your conferences into engaging collaboration centers with a range of tools to enhance engagement. Depending on the package you subscribe to, the application can have between 150 to 3,000 participants. As such, it’s an extremely scalable platform for large enterprises.
As you can see, you have a lot of options when it comes to holding video calls and conference calls on TV with friends, family, or colleagues.
The easiest way to video call on TV is to use a Smart TV with an integrated camera or purchase a web camera for your TV which can be a cost efficient way to do it. However, if you have a Smart TV or a Smart TV device like Amazon Fire Stick, you can also cast your phone or laptop’s screen to your TV without making any additional expenditures.
I hope this article has shown you all of the different options you have to video call on TV. Stay safe and happy social distancing!