Viber, the popular calling service is now available for all Windows 8.1 devices. The official Viber app brings all the calling facilities and messaging options to the Windows Store. The app has been designed specifically for touch screens whereas, the keyboard and mouse users can also enjoy the world popular free calling services by Viber.
The popilar VoIP service, Viber, has been available for download on mobile platforms like Android, iOS and Windows Phone but, now the popular calling service has released their app for Windows 8.1. Viber not only provides free calling facilities to the other Viber members but, you can also call landlines and mobile numbers at much cheaper costs.
Although, the app is available for download but, it has a catch here on Windows 8.1. You won’t be able to use their services if, you haven’t installed the Viber app on your mobile phone. The app requires an active phone number connected with your Viber account in-order to access the services on Windows 8.1, which would then be used when you call from the Windows 8.1 app – Details in the ‘mobile number verification section’.
Once you launch the app, the first and foremost thing the app will ask you is to let it use your microphone and speakers. Once you have provided the permissions, you would be taken directly to the app’s landing page where the app starts its magic – I would say its restrictions!
The app will ask if the Viber app is installed on your cell phone or not? If you select no, then you will be asked to install the app on your Windows Phone, Android, iOS or BlackBerry.
The mobile number verification
If you select Yes, you would be asked for your mobile number associated with the Viber account. After selecting the country, and entering your phone number, the app will send a 4-digit code to your Viber account. I was able to get the code after 4 failed attempts and in the last, all four of the codes were sent to my Viber app on Android after 20 minutes.
Tip:You might need to connect to internet and open Viber app on your mobile phone to get the code.
Once you have entered the code and verified your phone number, you would be taken to the app’s main page.
The Viber shows most recent conversations on the left, followed by Contacts section and then, Group. You also get the Compose and Keypad button on the far right side which are a quick way to start a conversation.
The recent app section shows the recent conversations in a touch friendly manner. The awesome things about the app is that it will also show the most recent missed call on the top right side of the recent section.
The contacts section will show all your contacts from your mobile phone – yes the app saved all your contacts in the cloud without your permission! – to which you can interact and start a conversation. Press any contact and you would be taken directly to the conversation page.
You can start your conversation right away by typing a message or pressing the call button on left to start a call. In my short period of testing, I wasn’t able to connect a Viber to Viber call to any of my contacts. The text messaging features worked like a Charm infact, the read icon was very helpful for me to know whether the recipient has read the message or not.
The call just connected and then, nothing happened. Neither of the persons, I was calling, could hear me or I couldn’t hear their voices. Checking the Settings couldn’t solve anything – My hardware and PC are working perfectly and I can easily connect Skype call and use both my Microphone and webcam.
You can also send emoticons in the conversations by pressing the icon just beside the text box. There are dozens of emoticons there to be included in your text conversations. A couple of good looking stickers are also available to be sent to the your contacts.
The app bar – accessible by right click or swipe from bottom – holds a couple of very useful options like the ‘Pin Conversation to Start’, delete conversation and the mutli-notification control which offers decreased notifications for multiple accounts.
The app solves the multiple conversations problem in an easy to use way by showing the active conversations at the top right corner of the conversations view. These conversations view seems similar to the Chat Heads used by Facebook on the official Messenger apps. Press any contact from active conversations and start interacting with that person right away. I’d be posting more details in later blog posts on this matter.
The keypad of the Viber app is similar to that of the Skype app for Windows 8 where you get touch friendly buttons to type your number whereas, the selection of country to call is provided above.
Me option in Settings:
The ‘Me’ section in the Settings Charm lets you customize your profile by adding your Name and profile photo. The app also gives you the ability to connect to Facebook and use that details in the app.
The options section in the Settings Charm holds the options like microphone and speaker configuration, app language, notification details and restore options.
The app has also been optimized for snap of Windows 8.1 and you can use it in different positions like the 80:20 view where the Viber can be opened in smallest possible view. Other options include 60:40 view where Viber can take 60% of all screen area. Rest, you can use upto three more apps – depending upon the app styles. Despite the size, I was able to keep my conversation going even when the app was snapped to its minimum size.
The best, good and worst:
The Viber app for Windows 8.1 is really awesomse and you can easily use its features designed specifically for touch screens. The Multi-conversation view is the best feature of the app and it takes full advantage of the Modern-UI of Windows 8.1.
The good thing about this app is its ability to resize at different styles in snap which make the conversations and multi-tasking with other apps very smooth.
The worst about the app is the restriction in the signup procedure where you must have to install the Viber app on your mobile device in-order to use it on Windows 8.1. This feature might not be a problem for people with Viber on mobile phones but, people who don’t have Viber will be forced to download which makes the Windows 8.1 app a failure. Also, the Windows 8.1 tablets with sim card facility will be left behind since, the users will still require a mobile phone to use this app on their tablet despite the sim card solution.
The Viber app is now available for download from Windows Store for free and has a download size of 13.2MB. You can get Viber from the link below.
– Download Viber app for Windows 8.1 (Windows Store link)