These are our 7 favorite video chat devices

These easy-to-use video chat devices make it easy to connect with loved ones from a distance and make it seem like you’re really together while on vacation (or anytime!).

The holiday season will undoubtedly be difficult for many families. Due to the pandemic, some will not be able to see their grandparents, some will not be able to see their parents, and some may even spend the holidays alone. We’ve compiled a list of the best video chat devices that make connecting with your loved ones remotely a little easier and a little more special than a traditional phone call. Consider purchasing one of these gifts for the people in your life who you won’t be able to spend time with this holiday season to let them know you care and wish they were together.

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Lovebox Messenger

Urban outfitters, $ 100

Send notes to loved ones via a smartphone app with this WiFi-enabled wooden box. Every time a new message arrives, the heart of the box starts to spin and your loved one will know you are thinking of them!

Image: Urban outfitters

Amazon Echo Show, $ 149.99

Also an Alexa device with voice capabilities, this rectangular screen lets you make video calls to anyone using Skype, the Alexa app, an Echo Spot, or an Echo Show. You can call someone by saying “Alexa, call [name]And you can even “drop” on someone, a feature that lets you video call a loved one without having to pick up the phone. Don’t worry, both users must enable this feature for it to work.

devices for video calls

Image: Amazon

Facebook portal, $ 129- $ 149

The Facebook portal also integrates Alexa, but what is interesting is that it allows “smart video” calls. What is it, you ask? The smart camera automatically pans and zooms to follow where you are, so it’s like you’re really in the same room! It also comes in a variety of sizes. For example, Portal TV lets you make smart video calls on your TV and Portal + allows smart video calls on a 15.6 inch HD screen.

video chat devices

Image: Facebook portal

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Skylight frame, $ 159

You’ve seen a digital photo frame before, but this one lets you add photos automatically via email. So you can surprise your family with photos of you from an event they couldn’t attend on their digital photo frame in seconds.

Image: Skylight frame

GrandPad, the plan including tablet, apps, multiparty calling, data, music, damage and theft insurance, customer support, case and stylus is $ 49 / year or $ 66 / month

GrandPad is a smart and easy way for seniors to connect with loved ones. All you need is the GrandPad app, portal or device and you can connect to GrandPad’s private family network through iPhone, Android, iPad or desktop. Family members can adjust settings and upload photos for the GrandPad user.

senior video chat

Image: GrandPad

ViewClix, $ 199 to $ 299

ViewClix is ​​a digital photo frame with video chat capabilities that makes it easier to connect with the elderly. There is no need for an Amazon, Facebook or Google account for seniors and they won’t need to learn new technologies.

senior video chat

Image: ViewClix

Google Nest Hub + Duo

Best buy, $ 229

The Google Nest Hub, also available in multiple screen sizes, lets you make video calls and leave video messages. The camera also keeps you in view as you move around the room. Photos can be displayed on the screen, similar to a digital photo frame, through Google Photos.

video chat devices

Image: Google Nest Hub

For a similar but cheaper option, consider the Lenovo Smart Display with Google Assistant, or $ 79.99 for a 7-inch screen.

If your family is out of the question spending the extra cash during the holiday season, don’t worry! There are many free video chat apps and services you can use to easily connect with your loved ones, including:

  • Meet Jitsi (Open Source)
  • Signal messenger
  • Skype
  • Google Hangouts
  • Google meet
  • Google Duo
  • Discord
  • Zoom
  • FaceTime
  • Facebook Messenger
  • WhatsApp

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