Use FaceTime on Mac

FaceTime makes it easy to have a video or audio call. All you need is a broadband internet connection and a built-in or connected microphone and camera.

 

Make a FaceTime call

  1. Open the FaceTime app.
  2. Click the New FaceTime button . If you can't see it in your version of FaceTime, skip this step.
  3. Enter the name, email address or phone number of the person you want to call. With macOS Mojave or later, you can enter more than 1 person — up to 32 people — to make a Group FaceTime call.
  4. Click the FaceTime button to make a video call, or click the button's arrow Down caret button and choose FaceTime Audio. If you can't see this button, click the Video or Audio button instead.
    Starting a FaceTime call to a group of people: FaceTime button circled
  5. If you're calling a group, you should see a tile for each person in the group. The tile will say "Waiting" until the person answers. If you can't see any tiles, click the FaceTime button in the sidebar to start the call.
  6. To leave the call, click the End button . If you leave a group call, everyone else in the group will remain on the call until they choose to leave.

During a Group FaceTime call, the video tiles work like this:

  • The most active speakers will appear in live video tiles. Other participants will appear in a row of tiles below. In this view, the tiles will move and the speaker's tile will enlarge automatically. You can prevent this movement in macOS Catalina or later: From the FaceTime menu bar, choose FaceTime > Preferences, then deselect Speaking.
  • Beginning with macOS Monterey, you can have all of the tiles in a uniform grid when the call includes at least 4 participants: Click the Grid button that appears in the top right-hand corner of the window. In this view, the speaker's tile will be automatically highlighted.
  • Click a tile to show that person's name. Double-click it to make the tile larger.
  • A tile will display an exclamation mark  when the internet connection isn't fast enough to show that person's video.

 


Add a person to a FaceTime call

Anyone on the call who is using the FaceTime app can add more people to the call.

  1. While the call is taking place, click the sidebar button  in the FaceTime app, then click the add button  in the sidebar.
  2. Enter the new person's name, email address or phone number, then click Add.
  3. Click the Ring button next to their name in the sidebar to call them. 

If a FaceTime link has been created for the call, anyone who has the link can share it with anyone else they want to join the call. 

 


macOS Monterey introduces FaceTime links, which make it easier to plan ahead for a FaceTime call because you can send a link to all participants before the call has started. With FaceTime links, you can invite friends with Android and Windows devices to join the call too. They can use the link to join from their browser when using the latest version of Chrome or Edge.

Create and share a FaceTime link

  1. Open the FaceTime app on a Mac that's using macOS Monterey. 
  2. Click Create Link  to open a sharing menu. You can then copy the link or choose one of the other sharing options.
  3. After creating the link, it will appear in the sidebar of the FaceTime window, as pictured below.
  4. When you're ready to start the call, double-click FaceTime Link in the sidebar or click the FaceTime button  next to it. Then click the Join button.
  5. When others open the FaceTime link and click Join, they'll need to be let in to the call.
    • To let them join the call, click the tick  by their name.
    • To decline their request to join the call, click the decline button  by their name.
    • To remove them from the call after they've joined, click the remove button  within 30 seconds.

To delete a FaceTime link, click the Info button  next to the link in the sidebar, then click Delete Link. When you delete a link, you'll no longer be notified when someone uses the link, and anyone who does use it will only see that they're waiting to be let in.

FaceTime window after clicking the Info button next to FaceTime Link

You can also create a link in the Calendar app. When adding a new event, click the FaceTime button next to "Add Location or Video Call" and then choose FaceTime. With the FaceTime link seamlessly attached to the Calendar event, everyone you invite will know exactly where to meet and when.

Join a call using a FaceTime link

  1. Click the FaceTime link. If you're using a device that can't open the link in the FaceTime app, the link will open in your web browser instead. On Android and Windows devices, the latest versions of Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge support FaceTime links.
  2. When joining the call from a web browser, you'll first be asked to enter your name to join the conversation. Then click Continue.
    FaceTime browser window: Enter your name
  3. Click Join and wait to be let in.

 Find out more about joining FaceTime calls from an Android or Windows device.

 


Answer a FaceTime call

From the notification that appears on your Mac, click Accept to answer the call in the FaceTime app. If you click the arrow Down caret button next to Accept, you can choose to accept it as an audio call instead of video call. If you click the arrow next to Decline, you can choose to send a message to the caller or set a reminder to call back later. 

FaceTime notification: Accept or Decline

Notifications to join a Group FaceTime call will display a Join button instead. Click it to open the FaceTime app, then join the call from within the app.

 


Choose a mic mode

macOS Monterey includes new microphone settings. During a FaceTime call, click Mic Mode in Control Centre , then choose between the standard  setting and these new settings:

  • Voice Isolation : Give priority to your voice and minimise the sounds of traffic, dogs barking and other background noise around you.
  • Wide Spectrum : Capture your voice as well as the sound around you, such as the sound of music or nature.

Mic Mode options in Control Centre

macOS Monterey also includes Spatial Audio, which works with all mic modes and makes the voices you hear sound like they're coming from the direction in which each person is positioned on the screen. Spatial Audio is available on these Mac models:

  • Mac models with Apple silicon, if using the internal speakers, wired headphones or AirPods
  • Intel-based Mac notebooks introduced in 2018 later, if using the internal speakers or wired headphones
  • Intel-based iMac models introduced in 2018 or later, if using wired headphones

 


Blur the background with Portrait mode

macOS Monterey includes Portrait mode when using FaceTime on a Mac with Apple silicon. Portrait mode will blur the background and put the visual focus on you. To turn it on or off during a call, move the pointer over your video tile in the FaceTime app, then click the Portrait mode button . Or click Video Effects in Control Centre.

 


Learn more

FaceTime is not available in all countries and regions.

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