1. You and your calling party will need to go to Settings -> Phone, and ensure that you've enabled FaceTime.
2. You will both need to be connected to a Wi-Fi network before dialing each other. 3. You'll need to dial their iPhone's native phone number (i.e. this won't work with a forwarding service or Google Voice).Now that we've got that out of the way, there are two ways to initiate a call with them: 1. Begin with a plain old phone call then convert to a FaceTime session: This is probably the easiest way, and might be considered the more polite route to go. Call the other person's phone number directly and ask them if they wish to convert the call to a FaceTime chat. If they agree, press the FaceTime button on the screen, and the other person will be asked if they wish to accept an incoming FaceTime chat request. A few seconds of connecting go by, and then the calls become a mobile video conference.
Setting up FaceTime on your Mac FaceTime desktop software is Mac only and may not be free. It may cost you $0.99 from the Mac App Store if it isn't already bundled with your OS. Since your Mac doesn't have an actual phone number you'll use your email address instead. The easiest way to set this up is to go into the FaceTime preferences, log in to your iTunes account, and use the same email address associated with your iTunes account for your FaceTime ID.If you want to use your iPhone to FaceTime a user that has an iPad 2 or a Mac, this process changes slightly. You'll ask the other party for their FaceTime email address. You can associate several email addresses with your FaceTime account, but you'll want to choose a single one to be your caller ID. You can have the computer and the iPad 2 both use the same caller ID if you wish, but note when your partner calls you back, both the iPad 2 and the Mac will ring at the same time. FaceTime for Mac desktop or iPad 2 to iPhone communication If you're on your iPad 2 or computer, and want to FaceTime your friend's phone, you'll choose the phone number of the other party's iPhone. If they have FaceTime enabled in their Phone preferences and are connected to a Wi-Fi network, their phone will start to ring. Note you can only enter phone numbers of other iPhone 4 users here (i.e it won't create an audio call for non-iPhone 4 users from your Mac). FaceTime for an iPad 2 or Mac to an iPad 2 or Mac This solution doesn't require a cell phone plan, and you won't actually be calling a phone number. The two devices need to be FaceTime enabled and connected to a Wi-Fi network. Choose the email address associated with the other party's account, and it will initiate a FaceTime chat with them if their device is enabled and connected to a Wi-Fi network. If you've talked with them previously on FaceTime, the little FaceTime camera logo on the right side of the button will be your friendly reminder that you're selecting the correct email address. What if I have both an iPad 2 and a Mac with FaceTime? If you are lucky enough to have both a Mac and an iPad 2, you have a choice to make. If you want to keep things simple and have your computer and iPad 2 ring at the same time, choose the same email address for both devices. If you'd like a little more control over where your friends or family reach you on FaceTime, use one email address for the iPad, and another for the Mac. In my research for this article, I was able to use my @appadvice address, and add a +ipad and +macbook to the email address. For example, the following 2 addresses were ones I setup for testing as I put together this post:
[email protected] -> Goes to my iPad for a FaceTime chat [email protected] -> Goes to my MacBook for a FaceTime chatIn the iPhone Contacts app, you can even customize the labels to be iPad or Mac instead of work and home. Perhaps Apple will provide a better way to manage these contact options in future versions of iOS and OS X. Final Thoughts Apple hid most of the FaceTime complexities inside the iPhone 4's native Phone app (and we liked it that way). Until Apple has a better native solution for controlling where FaceTime requests end up, I hope these guidelines for managing your FaceTime devices help. The top of my wish-list would include Google Voice integration so I wouldn't have to expose my native iPhone 4 number to everyone. It would also be nice to have a unified app or portal that controls all of these options in a single place. What have you done to keep this under control? Let me know in the comments. I look forward to hearing from you!