Accessible via a Chrome extension and under Android and iOS, Houseparty is an application allowing to organize video chat in group of 8 people maximum. Although entirely in English and with a few bugs in the games, the app is still easy to use and allows you to chat with friends and family on video for free and unlimited.
Houseparty: video chat with loved ones on PC and mobile
Widely acclaimed in France during this period of containment due to the epidemic of COVID-19, the mobile and PC application Houseparty has the wind in its sails to organize video discussions with friends or family. Developed since 2016, it has been owned by the creators of Fortnite, Epic Games, since June 2019.
Its principle is simple: offer each person a virtual room in which they can discuss video and audio for free with 7 other people around them. Each session can therefore accommodate 8 participants, with no time limits and for an unlimited number of discussions. First of all, note that the application does not offer Premium mode and does not provide advertisements.
Register and find your contacts
Houseparty offers simple registration by e-mail and does not allow connection with a Google account or via a social network. Once you have registered, you can search for contacts by entering their phone number or by allowing the application to access contacts in the directory. Importing contacts via their Facebook account is also possible. Once the account has been created and the contacts have been imported, you must authorize the application to use the camera and the microphone of the device, as well as geolocation to find nearby friends.
What does Houseparty offer?
The Android application allows you to organize audio and video discussions with a maximum of 8 people. When the user logs in, he is automatically in a virtual room where he can invite his contacts to chat. Houseparty lets you know when a contact connects with a notification. It is important to note that a function allows you to lock the current room to avoid the connection of new people.
In addition to the audio and video group discussion, the application offers the sending of a Facemail, an audio and video message to send to one or more contacts who can view the video later. Screen sharing is not yet integrated in the Android version while the functionality is already available on iOS.
Discussions and games
Houseparty is more relaxation oriented than the various video applications, in particular thanks to the 4 games available and playable at 8, however, they are in English:
- – Heads Up! : an equivalent of the post-it game. A person must guess the name of the celebrity, a mark or a work which is assigned to him by asking for clues to the other participants.
- – Trivia : a quiz allowing you to measure yourself with friends around many themes.
- – Chips and Guac : playable from three people, the goal being to choose expressions and words with the funniest possible definition given by the game referee.
- – Quick Draw! : a person must draw and make guess an animal, an object and a place with the other contacts in a given time.
Note however stability and display problems for certain games during our tests.
A somewhat capricious application
Houseparty is entirely in English and may encounter bugs, especially with games, making its handling risky. It is also necessary to take care to lock its chat rooms. The set is still very practical to chat free and unlimited and with loved ones in a personal setting.