Gaming chat app Discord tests video calls and screen sharing
Discord, the Slack-like gaming chat app, has been steadily improving since its initial launch a couple of years ago. Last January, it added a $5 paid tier for fans to essentially thank the company — the bonuses simply include GIF avatars, custom emoji and a bigger file upload limit. It secretly raised $50 million last month, as well. That extra cash may be why the Discord team is able to start rolling out two of its most-requested features, video chat and screen sharing.
The team is testing the two new features with 5 percent of its current members to make sure its servers can handle the big bump in server traffic represented by video data. Desktop app users will get the feature first, with roll outs planned for mobile and web users soon. The test run will last a month or so, which is when Discord plans to open up the features to all users.
For now, video chat and screen sharing is only available in one-to-one Discord calls or within direct message groups of up to 10 people, so you’ll need to start one to see the video options (the team recommends five users at once for best quality). You can switch between your screen share and webcam video at will, making it easy to connect with your gamer buddies face to face and plot your strategy on paper. If you click away from the video call, you’ll get a neat little picture-in-picture screen so you can stay chatting while you check out other Discord channels.
If you’re one of the lucky few to get the new feature this week, don’t plan everything going smoothly. “Thanks for your patience as we develop this feature,” writes Discord’s Nelly on Medium. “If you’re part of the initial rollout, please submit any bumps, bugs, and bruises to us so we can get those fixed.”