An iPhone.

FaceTime: A Way to Connect With Friends and Family

How to Use FaceTime

FaceTime is a video chat service. So, this means that you can get in touch with friends and family using your internet connection rather than your phone line. Not only can you hear each other, but you will also be able to see each other too. Knowing how to FaceTime can keep you in better touch with your friends and family.

Now, Facetime is provided by Apple, so that does mean that you and the person you are calling will need an Apple product such as an iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Mac.

Benefits of Facetime for Seniors

We love Facetime for being able to hear and see family, the grandkids and friends, no matter where we are in the world. Goodbye long distance and international phone call charges! As long as we can connect to the internet, we can connect to the family. Here are some other great benefits too.

Easier Communication

So often we can find ourselves separated from families and friends by hundreds if not thousands of miles, and it can feel that we are missing out on some of those cherished moments. But imagine being able to see your grandchild learning how to ride a bike, being able to join exam and promotion celebrations, and even being able to see a redecorated room or renovated kitchen.

Better Form of Communication for Those With Hearing Loss

Phone calls can be challenging if you are experiencing some hearing loss. However, chatting via video means that you also get to see a person’s body language and that helps with communication. So, being able to see facial expressions and hand gestures makes it much easier to get the full message of what is being said.

Improves Mental Health

Not only is FaceTime a great way to contact friends and family, but research shows that it can also be helpful in reducing the likelihood of depression, which comes from a sense of isolation. The study found that through the use of video chat, seniors have a much lower risk of depression compared to those who use other types of electronic communication, such as email or social media.

The researchers think this is because of the more personal aspect of video chatting, which helps seniors to feel more connected to loved ones, meaning that they can stave off any feelings of loneliness.

It can be challenging to schedule visits with loved ones, especially when they live at some distance. So, being able to chat with friends and family using a video chat service, such as FaceTime, allows us to socialize even when it is not possible to meet in person. Technology can never totally replace face-to-face interaction, but video chat does provide a way to supplement communication with friends, family and loved ones.

Setting Up FaceTime

The great news about setting up FaceTime is that it is already there on your Apple device. All you need to do before using it for the first time is to open it by clicking on the FaceTime app and then sign in using your Apple ID.

FaceTime automatically registers your phone number, but you can also register your email address. This then makes it easier for your friends and family to connect to you. You can do this by:

  • Going to settings.
  • Then, select FaceTime.
  • Select use your Apple ID for FaceTime.
  • Then, finally sign in with your Apple ID.

How to Add Contacts

Before you can contact someone via FaceTime, they need to be in your contacts list. You can find your contacts list by tapping the phone icon and then selecting contacts at the bottom of the screen.

If you want to FaceTime someone who is not in your contact list, then you can easily add them using the following instructions:

  • Open the phone app by tapping on its icon.
  • Tap the “Contacts” option which you will find towards the bottom of the screen.
  • Tap the + icon at the top right corner of the screen.
  • A new blank contact screen will be ready to be filled in.
  • Tap on each field to open the keyboard and then add information, starting with their first and last names.
  • Fill in their email address or phone number, ideally both.
  • Tap the “Done” button at the top of the screen to save the information.

How to Make a Call

Now that you know how to add contacts, you need to know how to make a call to your friend. Follow these simple steps:

  • Click on the FaceTime app.
  • Click the + in the top right-hand corner.
  • Enter the person's name that you want to contact.
  • Select the person from the list by tapping on their name.
  • Tap the video icon to start a FaceTime call.

When they accept your call, you will see a large screen that shows their image and a smaller screen with your image. Now you are all connected and set to catch up! When it is time to end the call, simply click the “End” button.

Time for FaceTime

FaceTime is one of those things that you may not have bothered trying out, but believe me, once you do, you will wonder why on earth you never used it before!