If it's true, it would go a long way in helping Apple and its software compete with Microsoft's Skype, which already lets you do group video chats.
Before we tell you this, we want to warn you not to get too excited. Sometimes the rumor mill churns out nothing more than, well, rumors. And the latest one to emerge regarding iOS 11 is about group FaceTime calls. And while it would be exciting, it’s an unverified claim that has its roots in Israeli site The Verifier.
According to the site, “several people familiar with iOS development” claim that group FaceTime calls are being developed by the bright minds at Apple. And allegedly, some of this research and development is happening in Israel. The feature would do what its name suggests — allow you to make FaceTime calls with a group of people, instead of just one person. In fact, up to five people would supposedly be able to see one another’s faces simultaneously. According to The Verifier, these group calls could be started through your group texts in iMessage.
Why are we so dubious about these claims? For one, The Verifier isn’t exactly known for hitting the nail on the head when it comes to rumors about Apple, so we don’t know just how accurate these reports really are. Moreover, very little whatsoever is currently known about iOS 11, so we’re still in the phase of taking just about everything with a grain of salt (especially if only one source is reporting it as absolutely true).
And really, it doesn’t seem as though The Verifier itself is all that convinced group FaceTime will be here by iOS 11. Indeed, the site noted that the feature could be unveiled at a later date (at some point, we’ll surely be able to FaceTime with multiple people at a time).
If, however, the rumor and its timing does prove to be true, it would be a huge step forward for Apple. After all, Microsoft’s Skype has had this feature for quite some time. And when it comes to bringing together large, international families together, being able to show your grandmother in China your new baby in Iowa while keeping your aunt in France in the loop certainly would come in handy.
But for now, we’ll just have to bide our time and wait for iOS 11 to make its debut, which will likely happen this fall.