Apple to tempt Android and Windows users with a taste of FaceTime

The best way to encourage users to switch to iPhone, iPad, and Mac is to give those stuck on Android or Windows a taste of one of the platform's flagship feature.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor

Wind back to the WWDC 2010 keynote, when Steve Jobs was at the helm of Apple, he unveiled the FaceTime video communication system in one of those trademark "one more thing." If you have a long enough memory, you might also remember that Jobs promised that it would become an open standard.

Well, it's taken over a decade, but later this year Windows and Android users will be able to join in the FaceTime fun… sort of.

But rather than a dedicated FaceTime app for different platforms, iPhone, iPad, and Mac users will be able to send a link to others to connect on FaceTime -- even if they are using Android or Windows.

And Apple claims that there's no compromise when it comes to security or privacy.

All they'll need is an updated version on Microsoft Edge or Google Chrome.

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It's easy to think that this is a scramble to prevent people shifting their video communications to other, more platform agnostic, services such as Zoom.

But I don't think that's the case.

I see it less as a response to the competition in the video comms space, and more a way to showcase one of Apple's flagship features to those on other platforms.

One of those, "look what you could do if you owned an iPhone, iPad, or Mac," things.

And honestly, if Apple can pull this off so it's quick and simple to use and works smoothly without needing apps or downloads or messing about with settings, it could very well encourage those who are on the fence about switching to make the switch.

Making a push into the Android and Windows ecosystem can't be a bad thing and doing it in a way where there's no app to download, and it's invites from friends and family, puts Apple at arm's length from it.

It's also going to allow those already in the Apple ecosystem to pester friends and family to join in FaceTime calls, so if you bought an Android to get some peace from that, that time's coming to an end, my friend.

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