A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this app.
Ease of Play
Mostly easy to use, with clear feature icons at the bottom of the screen and the ability to access it via Facebook. There's a very helpful FAQ page on the ooVoo website for people new to video chat or who are having trouble connecting with others across platforms. The app will instantly link users with contacts in a user's phone and in Gmail, Facebook, and Twitter accounts using ooVoo, if permission is granted. On the downside, users must seek out and change settings to establish privacy on ooVoo, and the default mode is public.
Products & Purchases
Ads appear unless users purchase ooVoo Premium for $29.99/year or $2.99/month. Other in-app purchases vary as far as calling minutes to cell phones and land lines worldwide. Ads may be intended for an adult audience ("Are you interested in men, women, or both?" asks one).
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that ooVoo Video Call, Text and Voice is a free app that teens can use to group video chat with up to 12 people, even if they're using different platforms (iPhone, Android, desktop computers, and more). ooVoo users also can send texts and make regular phone calls, including to international numbers (in-app purchase is required). Ads on the free version can be removed by purchasing ooVoo's premium service. The developer's terms indicate people must be 13 or older to use the app. An important privacy and safety note: Unless teens change their account settings to limit or restrict public access, anyone can search for, see, and contact them.
Is It Any Good?
Using different communication tools such as Facebook, FaceTime, and Skype comes more naturally to most teens than talking into a telephone, so they'll love that ooVoo offers group chat across multiple device platforms, as well as the abilities to text and call individual friends. For people seeking to call internationally, ooVoo offers call minutes as in-app purchases to more than 70 countries. Users can video chat with friends who don't have ooVoo, but the process is much more complicated. The desktop and premium versions include even more features (such as video messaging and file sharing) and no ads. Video and sound quality are generally good, although that can reportedly vary with device and network quality.
For teen's safety, it would be nice to see the restricted profile access as the default setting, but parents and teens can easily change that setting for improved privacy and safety. Users can block people they don't want contacting them via ooVoo, and they can report any other user for harassing behavior. Used wisely, ooVoo can be a fantastic communication tool for teens and adults.
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Our Editors Recommend
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