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Houseparty: Tips and tricks on using the video chat app

The app has gained popularity during lockdown. We reveal how to get the best out of it.

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Our guide to using Houseparty (Houseparty/PA)

Our guide to using Houseparty (Houseparty/PA)

Our guide to using Houseparty (Houseparty/PA)

Technology is playing a key role in keeping people connected and entertained, with everyone stuck indoors.

A number of video chat apps have become popular in recent weeks, including one known as Houseparty.

So how does it work? Here we reveal everything you need to know, as well as some useful tips.

– What is Houseparty?

Houseparty
Houseparty (Houseparty/PA)

Houseparty is a video chat app that you could compare with the real life activity – at a house party, there are people you know and don’t know, who break into groups to socialise.

Sometimes you mingle and jump into these groups, speak to those you do know and get to know those you don’t.

This app is a bit like that.

You primarily connect with your own circle of friends and family from your phone’s contacts, or a Facebook or Snapchat account.

However, others you know – as well as others your friends know – will see that you’re in a room together and can jump in at any time, without warning.

So, for example, you could be in a room with a group of close friends. If you’re connected to the app with your mum, she will receive an alert when you enter the app, and can barge in on your conversation.

– Can I control who I add to Houseparty?

Houseparty
Houseparty has become popular during lockdown (Houseparty/PA)

Yes, you have to add each friend on the app before you can chat together.

When signing up, you can connect your Facebook or Snapchat account, showing you who already has the app installed.

You do not have to add every person you know – if you do, you increase the risk of random people jumping into your Houseparty chats.

However, people will get a notification when you first sign up too. You can deny requests to be friends on Houseparty, though it might be a bit awkward depending on who the person is.

– Can I stop random people jumping into my Houseparty conversations?

Yes, you can prevent people from going into each conversation by locking a room when everyone you wish to talk to has entered.

– Can I avoid being spotted on Houseparty?

Whenever you open Houseparty, everyone you’re connected with on the app will receive a ping notification, which can lead to a deluge of people popping up to chat with you – and again, because of the nature of the app, there is no warning or accept button, they will just appear.

There is a way to avoid being seen this way, however.

Hold the app icon down on Android or iOS, and a “Sneak in” option will be on offer. Selecting this will prevent a notification going out.

Houseparty
The ‘sneak in’ feature allows users to go onto the app without notifying friends (Houseparty/PA)

Warning: Just because there was no notification that you are present on the app, it does not mean that people can’t chance starting a chat with you.

You can also stop individual people from receiving a notification by ghosting them.

This can be done by selecting the person’s name, tapping the cog icon, and switching Ghosting on.

– Can you play games on Houseparty?

Yes, you can play games with people on Houseparty.

Selecting the dice icon when in a room, there is a choice of four games: Heads Up!, Trivia, Chips And Guac, and Quick Draw!

– Are there other ways to communicate on Houseparty?

Yes, if you are not able to reach a person, you can send a Facemail or Pass a Note by selecting their name from your contact list.

PA