● It is now possible to chat while also sharing your screen and watching YouTube videos together
● The number of faces displayed has been expanded and the screen layout has been redesigned, making everyone's faces easier to see
TOKYO – May 3, 2020 – LINE Corporation ("LINE") has transformed LINE's video and voice call features in the app's latest update to version 10.6.5. The major update aims to make communicating in groups more convenient and entertaining for users, and has been implemented in response to the increased use of LINE's group call features since late February 2020 after Japan adopted stay-at-home measures to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Share screens and co-view YouTube videos over group call
New "Watch together" feature released (YouTube supported from May 4; only for LINE for mobile)
Watch together is a new feature enabling users to share their screen and YouTube* videos in group calls. Sharing screens or discussing and joking about YouTube videos that everyone is co-viewing on a group call enhances the shared experience and feeling of being together even when physically apart.
*Co-viewing YouTube videos in group calls was supported from May 4 and is only available with LINE for mobile.
To use Watch together, tap the Watch together icon at the bottom right of the screen and tap Screen sharing or YouTube.
Users can tap Screen sharing during a group call to show others on the call what's on their smartphone screen. Purposes may vary including going through an app as a group and enjoying the content together or getting second opinions on items in an online store. Android users can additionally use the OS feature to doodle on the shared content.
To share YouTube videos from May 4, users can either search for videos and tap them during the call, or, if users already know the video they wish to share before joining a group call, they can copy the video URL just before joining to display the URL at the bottom of the call screen. Whether it be videos that come up in a conversation or funny YouTube videos for everyone to enjoy, Watch together enhances group communication by allowing videos to be a conversation starter.
Watch together user guide (Japanese only):
Use case of Screen share
Browse through an online store as a group and pick out a friend's birthday present together
Use case of Watch together
Co-view a favorite artist's livestream or music video on YouTube among friends and dance away
Have an online YouTube co-viewing party of a live sporting event or sports highlight videos
Senior high school students spending more time on YouTube and LINE
A survey carried out by LINE Research (LINE's dedicated research platform for smartphones) among senior high school students in mid April of this year showed that teens are spending more time watching YouTube videos and chatting on LINE due to being stuck indoors for longer hours.
Learn from teenagers on how to kill quarantine boredom (Japanese article on Research Note by LINE Research)
More users share screen space during video call Up to six on smartphone and nine on iPad
After applying the latest update, up to six participants can share screen space during a LINE group video call, and up to nine on an iPad. * To focus on a participant, users can double tap a person's feed and expand it. The rest of the participants show up as thumbnails at the bottom of the screen. Swiping sideways lets users scroll through up to 200 participants. New video effects and filters are added regularly for continuous entertainment.
*Up to four participants could be displayed simultaneously on iOS and iPad during video calls before the update.
Choose between Grid view and List view
From LINE version 10.6.5, users can choose to display participants in one of two ways during a group call—Grid view or List view. In Grid view, the icons of up to nine participants are displayed in a multi-panel screen while the same icons are displayed in a vertical list in List view. Either way, users can scroll to see the icons of all participants.* A green border appears around the person who is speaking to clarify the speaker at all times, especially in large groups. List view can also be used to see everyone's mic and video settings.
While LINE continues to release updates based on user needs and honor its core value of enabling communication among family, friends, and other close relationships, it will provide each and every user with optimized communication and new ways to acquire information as it aims to become a steadfast presence in users' lives.
Articles on LINE's efforts against COVID-19
Helping users during the pandemic (Japanese only):
The article talks about LINE's initiatives aimed to ease some of the daily inconveniences of users during the COVID-19 outbreak.
#Stay home (Japanese only):
An article introducing LINE's services and features that add fun and convenience to life at home in isolation.
Use LINE video call to have an online family reunion (Japanese only):
The article explains how to enjoy an online family reunion using LINE's video call feature.