FaceTime Tips

icon256FaceTime for Mac makes it easy to talk, smile and laugh with friends and family on their iPhone 4, iPad 2, iPod touch or Mac. Getting started is quick and easy — simply enter your Apple ID and you’re ready to go. Whether you’re talking to someone on an iPhone or on another Mac, video calls with FaceTime look great. There’s no better way to keep all your favorite faces just a click away.

Simple to Get Started
• Setup is quick and easy – just enter your Apple ID.
• With just one click, you can make a video call to an iPhone 4, iPad 2, iPod touch, or another Mac.

Easy-to-Organize Contacts
• Make calls using your existing Address Book contacts – you don’t have to enter your contacts from scratch.
• Add the people you call most often to your Favorites list.
• Quickly review your past calls with Recents.

High-Definition Video
• Receive HD video calls at up to 720p on supported, Intel-based Macs.*
• A Mac with a standard-definition camera delivers up to VGA-quality video for Mac-to-Mac calls.

Elegant Interface
• Window and playback controls fade away so the focus stays on your conversation.
• View transitions smoothly when an iPhone 4, iPad 2, or iPod touch user switches from front to rear cameras or from portrait to landscape views.
• FaceTime’s widescreen aspect ratio makes it easy for families and groups to participate in a call.
• Enjoy your video call full screen, using every inch of your beautiful Mac display.

Ring Anywhere, Any Time
• Incoming calls ring on your Mac, even if FaceTime isn’t running.
• If you have more than one Mac, incoming calls ring on every one so you can answer on the Mac that’s most convenient.

*Video calls require a built-in FaceTime camera, an iSight camera (built-in or external), a USB video class (UVC) camera, or a FireWire DV camcorder; and a 128-Kbps upstream and downstream Internet connection. Making HD video calls requires a built-in FaceTime HD camera and a 1-Mbps upstream and downstream Internet connection. Receiving HD video calls requires a supported Intel-based Mac. (for a complete list, visit http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4534).

600px-FaceTime_App.svgSet up FaceTime on iOSGo to Settings and tap FaceTime.

Turn on FaceTime and tap “Use your Apple ID for FaceTime.”

Enter your Apple ID and password.

Tap Sign In.

Your phone number and all email addresses associated with your Apple ID will be displayed.

Note: Your phone number will be displayed only if you are setting up your iPhone, or if you are setting up another iOS device after you’ve set up your iPhone.

Tap Next.

Choose which email addresses and phone numbers you want people to use to contact you for FaceTime calls.

Scroll down to Caller ID. Choose which email address or phone number you want to appear during outgoing FaceTime calls.

About HD video calling

FaceTime for Mac supports video calling in high definition (HD) with Macs that include a built-in FaceTime HD camera. In addition, many existing Macs can receive an HD video call while sending standard definition video.

Sending call video in HDMacs with a built-in FaceTime HD camera are capable of sending call video in HD:

  • iMac (21.5-inch, Mid 2011)
  • iMac (27-inch, Mid 2011)
  • MacBook Pro (15-inch, Early 2011)
  • MacBook Pro (17-inch, Early 2011)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Early 2011)

Sending HD video requires a minimum upload bandwidth of 1 Mbps.

Note: Other Macs with FaceTime for Mac and Mac OS X v10.6.6 and later can send a call with standard definition video. For more information, view Mac OS X v10.6 Snow Leopard technical specifications.
Receiving a HD video call

These Macs are capable of viewing an HD call with FaceTime for Mac and Mac OS X v10.6.6 and later:

  • iMac (21.5-inch, Mid 2011)
  • iMac (27-inch, Mid 2011)
  • MacBook Pro (15-inch, Early 2011)
  • MacBook Pro (17-inch, Early 2011)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Early 2011)
  • MacBook (13-inch, Early 2008), or newer, with a 2.4 GHz or better processor
  • MacBook Pro (15-inch and 17-inch, Early 2008), or newer, with a 2.4 GHz or better processor
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid 2010), or newer, with a 2.53 GHz or better processor
  • iMac (20-inch and 24-inch, Early 2008), or newer, with a 2.4 GHz or better processor
  • iMac (21.5-inch and 27-inch, Late 2009), or newer, with a 3.06 GHz or better processor
  • Mac Pro (all models), with a compatible video camera
  • Mac mini (Early 2009) or newer, with a 2.26 GHz or better processor and a compatible video camera

Receiving HD video requires a minimum download bandwidth of 1 Mbps.

Example: You are using a MacBook (13-inch, Early 2008) with FaceTime for Mac to call a friend who is using a MacBook Pro (15-inch, Early 2011). Your MacBook (13-inch, Early 2008) will receive HD video from the MacBook Pro (15-inch, Early 2011), and your friend’s MacBook Pro will receive standard definition video from your MacBook.
Receiving a standard definition video call

Macs with Mac OS X v10.6.6 or later that were produced before those referenced in the sections above can use FaceTime for Mac. Calls will be sent and received using standard (non-HD) video.

If either Mac on a call can only send and receive standard video, then both Macs will only send and receive standard video.

Using FaceTime

With FaceTime, you can participate in video calls and audio calls with other FaceTime users. You can connect using Wi-Fi, or you can use FaceTime without Wi-Fi if you have a cellular data plan*. Learn more about how you can get in touch with other FaceTime users.

Which Apple products support FaceTime video and FaceTime audio?

To use FaceTime, you need one of the following Apple products:

  • iPhone 4 or later
  • iPad 2 or later
  • iPad mini
  • iPod touch (4th generation) or later

FaceTime audio calling isn’t available with iPod touch (4th generation).

*FaceTime over cellular data isn’t available on iPhone 4 or iPad 2.

How do I enable FaceTime?

You can enable FaceTime in multiple ways, depending on your device:

iPhone:

  • Turn FaceTime on in Settings > FaceTime. FaceTime will begin registration with your carrier-assigned cellular phone number. Sign in with your Apple ID to also use your e-mail with FaceTime.
  • From the Home screen, open the FaceTime app. Sign in with your Apple ID.

iPad and iPod touch:

  • Navigate to Settings > FaceTime. Turn FaceTime on if needed. Sign in with your Apple ID.
  • From the Home screen, open the FaceTime app. Sign in with your Apple ID.

What information do I need to call someone using FaceTime?

To call someone using FaceTime, you need their phone number or email address. Which one you use is determined by the device you are calling:

  • When calling someone using an iPhone: Try the phone number of the person you are calling first. If the person has registered an email with FaceTime, you can use that as well.
  • When calling someone using an iPad, iPod touch: Use the email address designated for FaceTime of the person you are calling.

On iPad and iPod touch, you need to add a person as a contact using the FaceTime or Contacts app before you can call them.

How do I make a FaceTime video call?

You can make a FaceTime video call in multiple ways from your iOS device.

  • Phone: While on a phone call, you can tap the FaceTime icon to invite the other party to a FaceTime video call.
  • FaceTime: Place a FaceTime video call using your contacts list by tapping the video icon.
  • Contacts: Tap the FaceTime video icon to place a FaceTime video call to the contact you are viewing.

How do I make a FaceTime audio call?

You can make a FaceTime audio call in multiple ways from your iOS device.

  • FaceTime: Place a FaceTime audio call using your contacts list by tapping the phone icon.
  • Contacts: Tap the FaceTime phone icon to place a FaceTime audio call to the contact you are viewing.

About resolution settings in the QuickTime Player inspector

You may notice that the medium and high quality resolution settings in QuickTime Player on Macs with a FaceTime HD camera appear higher in the inspector than they actually are.

This can occur on computers with FaceTime HD cameras:

  • iMac (Mid 2011) and later
  • MacBook Pro (Early 2011) and later
  • MacBook Air (Mid 2012) and later
  • MacBook Pro (Retina, Mid 2012) and later

Your computer may display slightly higher resolution settings in the QuickTime Inspector, but the actual resolutions are as stated in this table:

Resolution quality Resolution setting Resolution displayed in QuickTime inspector
Medium H.264 320×240 H.264 640×480
High H.264 640×480 H.264 1280×720

Note: Messages uses Meduim resolution quality for Video Chat.

 

Troubleshooting FaceTime

With FaceTime for Mac you can place and receive video calls to users of FaceTime on supported devices. Learn the system requirements for FaceTime for Mac and basic troubleshooting steps to resolve FaceTime for Mac activation and usage issues.

FaceTime is available for Macs running Mac OS X Snow Leopard v10.6.6 or later, iPod touch (4th generation) or later, iPhone 4 or later, and iPad 2 or later (including iPad mini).Notes

  • FaceTime may not be available in all countries or regions.
  • For information about using FaceTime on a Mac, see FaceTime Support.
  • For troubleshooting FaceTime on iOS Devices (iPod touch (4th generation) or later, iPhone 4 or later, iPad 2 or later and iPad mini), see iOS: Troubleshooting FaceTime

Verify your Mac meets the FaceTime system requirements

To participate in video calls, your Mac needs:

  • OS X Mountain Lion, OS X Lion or Mac OS X v10.6.6 (or later) with all available security updates installed.
    • For Mac OS X v10.6.6 or later, the FaceTime App needs to be purchased from the Mac App Store. OS X Mountain Lion and OS X Lion include FaceTime.
  • A 128-Kbps or better upstream and downstream Internet connection. Performance may vary according to network throughput and usage.
  • A built-in FaceTime camera, an iSight camera (built-in or external), a USB video class (UVC) camera, or a FireWire DV camcorder.
    • Making HD video calls requires a built-in FaceTime HD camera and a 1-Mbps upstream and downstream Internet connection.
    • Receiving HD video calls requires a supported Intel-based Mac. For a complete list, see this article.
  • A microphone.
    • You can use a built-in microphone, or connect an external microphone to your computer’s audio input port.
    • You can use compatible Bluetooth or USB microphone or headsets.

If you have multiple cameras or microphones attached to your computer, use the Video menu to select the camera or microphone you wish to use with FaceTime for Mac.

Activating FaceTime for Mac

Use your Apple ID to register and use FaceTime. FaceTime registration validates your Apple ID and email address for use with FaceTime.

If you are unable to activate FaceTime, try the following:

Sign in to FaceTime for Mac using a valid Apple ID. After you validate the email address for use with FaceTime, other FaceTime users can connect to you using that email address. If you encounter issues registering or using an Apple ID account:

  • Ensure that you have an active Internet connection.
  • Verify that you are using a valid Apple ID at appleid.apple.com. You can also create an Apple ID or reset your password from this website.
  • Check that your email address is verified in FaceTime > Preferences.
    • If FaceTime > Preferences shows your email status as “verifying,” follow the instructions in the verification email that was sent to complete the process.
  • Toggle FaceTime off and on in FaceTime > Preferences.
  • If still unable to Sign In follow the instructions in FaceTime, Game Center, Messages on OS X: Troubleshooting Sign in

Troubleshooting FaceTime for Mac

You can make FaceTime calls using the FaceTime app. You can call FaceTime users whose contact information is in Contacts. You can add contacts and edit contact information in either FaceTime or Contacts. To place a video call, you may use a phone number or email address.

If you encounter issues making or receiving FaceTime calls, try the following:

  • Verify that FaceTime is enabled in FaceTime > Preferences.
    • If the issue persists, or if you see the message “Waiting for Activation”, try toggling FaceTime off and then on.
  • Verify that the Date, Time, and Time Zone are set correctly:
    1. From the Apple () menu, choose System Preferences > Date & Time > Date & Time.
    2. Enable “Set Automatically“.
    3. Click the Time Zone tab and confirm the closest city is correct.
  • Verify that both parties are connected to an active broadband Internet connection.
  • Verify the phone number or email address being used is the correct one activated for FaceTime.
    • You can verify that you are using a valid Apple ID at appleid.apple.com. You can also create an Apple ID or reset your password from this website.
  • Verify that both parties have installed the latest software updates for their Mac and/or device. See: