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Sponsored App Review: Rounds Video Chat & Group Call

May 18, 2015 - Written By Tom Dawson

Rounds is a free video calling app that offers text messaging as well as voice calls – all for free. Rounds allows you to log in with a Facebook account and ring friends right away, but you can easily use the app with contacts on your phone as well as WhatsApp contacts, too. Rounds is not just another video calling app however, as it offers user the ability to change things up with effects, draw on the display, play games together and share YouTube clips, Rounds is a great way to connect to people away from home. More than that, Rounds now also supports up to 12 friends at a time in one conference call. A flexible, and engaging video calling app, let’s see what else Rounds has to offer.

You can download Rounds video chat for free from the Play Store, and all you need to do then is to log in with your Facebook account. Having a Facebook account isn’t 100% necessary, but the majority of your friends will be on Facebook and this makes it nice and easy to get to grips with.

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Once you’ve signed in with your account, you can go ahead and start adding or finding friends. It’s important that you don’t just have to use Facebook friends with Rounds. They can be contacts from your phonebook or from WhatsApp as well.

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From the same screen you can also start a group call, as well. My friend here from Android Headlines, Kristijan, has volunteered to be a guinea pig for this review.

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As you can see, you can choose to either call, video call or just chat with a friend. Kristijan and I spent some time messing around with the filters and that sort of thing, but it is a little awkward using a phone and trying out all the filters and such. Leading me to believe that a tablet would be great to use Rounds.

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Neither Kristijan nor I are artists, but you can have fun drawing things with Rounds.

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More than just doodling, Rounds is unique in that it gives chatters lots of things to play around with, like for instance the ability to play games together, all the while watch the other’s reaction and enjoying each other’s company real time.

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You can do the same for YouTube videos as well:

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The real fun however, is that you can have up to 12 friends in one conference call.

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Video calling has taken off in the past 3 or 4 years, mostly thanks to faster devices and more fast 3G or 4G access while on the move. As a result, there are lots of options out there, but none of them really offer what Rounds offers. Rounds does it all, and you can even chat with up to 12 people at the same time, which is pretty incredible when you think about it. The ability to play games with each other and share images and YouTube videos while still being on a call is a real nice touch as well. Friends that have moved away from each other can share fun things they came across during their day, and parents working away from home can see pictures of their kids and the two can share the moment together in real time. That’s a powerful thing for a video chat app to do, it brings people closer together, and makes other video calling apps look stuck in the past.

Ratings

  • Speed (4/5) – Rounds runs nice and quickly, and while you can use it over 3G, you will need a decent connection to get the most out of the app.
  • Features (5/5) – With group chat, lots of fun extras and the share feature to engage in shared memories, there’s more than enough on offer here with Rounds.
  • Theme (4/5) – Rounds features an interface that’s fairly easy to use and it looks good, too.
  • Overall (4.5/5) – One of the most fully-featured as well as flexible video calling apps out there, Rounds has a lot to offer to all sorts of users and it could be the replacement you’ve been looking for.

Pros

  • Ability to share videos and images helps bring people closer together in real time.
  • Completely free, whether you’re using WiFi, 3G or 4G it’s all free to use.
  • Group chat with up to 12 different users is great, and makes you wonder how other apps can keep up at this point.
  • No need to connect with just Facebook friends, you can use phonebook contacts as well as WhatsApp contacts.

Cons

  • YouTube videos and games on a phone as well as video feeds might feel a little cramped to some users.
  • Some might find the doodle side of the app a little too much.

Rounds is a video calling app that has a lot on offer that others simply cannot match. It brings people together more closely than say a Skype or Hangout call, and the ability to share a funny YouTube clip or a photos is pretty powerful. With the option to chat to up to 12 people at the same time, it becomes a way to connect with people all over the world in a more engaging way than simply sending them a text message or having one-on-one chats.

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