Before your first video call
Video: Making a video call
Watch the video (3:41).
Are you ready to talk face to face? On Skype, video calls are easy, whether you have a built-in webcam or one you've purchased separately.
To start, you need at least one contact. Go back to our lesson on Adding Contacts if you need help finding or adding people you know. Next, you'll need to test your webcam to make sure the person on the other end will be able to see you. After that, you'll be ready to make video calls one on one or with an entire group. Before you begin, make sure:
- You're connected to the Internet
- Your volume is turned up
- Your speakers and microphone are plugged in if they're not already built in to your computer
- Your webcam is plugged in if it's not already built in and you've installed the software that came with it
- You know your basic voice call settings are working; if you're not sure, you can always make a test call, which is covered in our lesson on Making Calls with Skype
To test your webcam:
- Select Tools, then choose Options.
Opening Skype options
- The Skype - Options window will appear. Under General, click Video Settings.
Opening video settings
- The pane will show the outcome of the test. You'll know it's working if you see live video of yourself. In the pane pictured below, you can adjust your privacy and webcam settings and even take a photo snapshot using your webcam.
- When you're done, close the window by clicking Cancel, or click Save if you've made any changes to your settings.
If Skype can't find your webcam, follow the links pictured below, or go to this troubleshooting page.