Discord is a full-featured voice and text chat platform that allows you to set up large or small chat servers for your gaming, social, or business groups. However, what a lot of people don’t know about Discord is that it also offers a complete video calling and screen sharing solution as well.
You and up to nine other people on your server can do live video chat while simultaneously sharing desktops. This feature is built right into the main Discord app — there are no additional programs to install.
This feature can be incredibly useful and makes Discord a real competitor to other meeting and video calling apps currently on the market.
In this article, I will show you how to configure and use the screen share and video calling features in Discord.
Setting Up Discord Screen Share & Video Call
To get started, we need to make sure your video and audio hardware are properly set up on your Discord client. Hook up whatever webcam and microphone you plan to use to video chat.
- First, access your Settings page. This is done by clicking on the cog icon just to the right of your username in the lower-left hand portion of the Discord interface.
- From the left-hand menu, click on App Settings and select Voice & Video. Here, you can adjust your settings for voice and video chat.
- Scroll to the Video Settings section and select your video camera from the drop-down.
- Over to the right, you have the option to Test Video in order to make sure everything is working properly.
- If you are using the Discord browser app rather than the standalone client, you may need to enable camera access from the popup in order to successfully use the device.
- If so, click the Allow button to confirm access.
This will give Discord permission to access your phone or computer’s microphone and camera in order to ensure that everything works properly.
Adding Friends To Your “Call List”
In order to initiate a video call, you will need to be Friends on Discord with everyone in the calling group. Once everyone you want to put in the call is on your Friends list, it’s time to get the call started!
If you’re not there already, head to your Homepage by clicking on the Discord icon located at the top left of the screen, just above the list of servers of which you’re affiliated.
- Open your Friend List by clicking on Friends.
- From here, you can either click the username of the friend or, hover over their name which will display the option to begin a Video Call.
- By clicking on the friend’s name, you will have opened a DM with them. Above the DM window, you can choose to begin a Video Call by clicking the appropriate icon. If you hovered over the username rather than clicked on it, you can skip this step.
If you are using the iOS or Android client, you can start a video call by tapping the triple dot icon at the top right of your screen while in a DM or Group Message and selecting Start Video Call from the options.
Using The Video Call & Screen Share Features (Desktop)
Once your call has started, there are several features you can use to arrange things the way you’d like. Here is a breakdown of what you can do.
1. Expand Down Arrow
The farthest left icon to work with is the “Expand Down” arrow. During a video call, clicking on the arrow will expand your video screen to the maximum height set by you in Discord.
2. Swapping From Video to Screen Share
The next two icons at the bottom of the screen will give you the option of swapping from a video call to enabling screen share. You should be familiar with the “Video Call” icon by now but the one to the left (a monitor screen with an arrow at the center) is the “Screen Share” icon.
You can swap between the two at any time throughout the call. When swapping to screen share, you can choose which monitor screen to share or a specific application window. You can even swap back and forth between monitor share and application by clicking the screen share icon while already screen sharing.
3. Leave Call Button
The next option is the “Leave Call” button. This button does exactly what it says and when pressed will drop the call. Avoid accidentally clicking on this until you’re actually finished with your call.
4. Mute Toggle & User Settings
To the right of the “Leave Call” button is an icon that looks like a microphone. This is the “Mute Toggle” icon and will mute or unmute your microphone when clicked. Next to that icon is the “User Settings” icon similar to the one in your Discord Homepage window.
5. Toggle Full-Screen
Clicking on this icon will fully expand your video call screen regardless of the current view. To exit full screen, click either the view selector or collapse icon or press the ESC key.
By clicking on a user’s avatar while in the normal screen for a group video call, you pull their video into focus while piling the others into a marquee to the right. To change the focus to a different user, click on another user from the marquee menu.
If you switch to another DM screen or a different server, your video call will pop out to a picture-in-picture view. You can also freely move the window around the screen to a position that works best for you. Video options will still be available within the window. Clicking the name at the top-left will revert to the call in progress window. On the lower-right, you can click on the icons for screen share and video call at your convenience.
Share Sound While Sharing A Screen
You have the option of enabling your sounds on the screen when in screen share mode. Allow those on the other end of the call to hear all the pings and chimes while you guide them around your screen or educating them on a specific application.
For the latter, you’ll need to toggle the SOUND while in the “Application Window”.
Unfortunately, screen sharing is not currently available on mobile devices, so you’ll have to hop on your desktop to take advantage of this useful feature.
Using The Video Call & Screen Share Features (Smartphone)
The user interface for the smartphone version of the Discord app is somewhat different from the desktop version.
If you’re using Discord on your iPhone or Android, here are the different options and features you’ll have access to during a call.
Audio Output (iOS Only)
Located at the top-right of the screen alongside the Switch Camera icon, this option will allow you to swap the audio output between using your iPhone’s default speakers or a wireless headset. The icon is displayed as an iPhone with a speaker at the bottom right.
You can seamlessly switch between your smartphone’s forward-facing and rear-facing cameras. The icon is displayed as a camera with a double-headed arrow.
Towards the bottom-center of your smartphone screen, the left-most icon is the Toggle Camera icon. Touchez this icon to toggle your camera view on or off.
The right side icon at the bottom-center of your smartphone screen is the “Toggle Mute” button. Touchez this to mute and unmute your phone’s mic during a Discord call.
Discord is an incredibly useful and full-featured communication app. While it is most popular for its text and voice chat features, Discord also has a great screen sharing feature that you can use during calls on your desktop.
By following the steps listed above, you can easily set up a call and start screen sharing with your friends on Discord.
Need more Discord resources? We’ve got you covered!
Running a Linux installation? Here’s how to install Discord on Ubuntu Linux!
If you’re setting up a server for your guild, you’ll definitely want to check out our complete guide to setting up a Discord server.
For fancy text effects, see our tutorial on changing the text colors in Discord.
Add some tunes to your online chat by learning how to add a music bot to your Discord server.
Finally, every server administrator should check out our guide to adding, managing, and deleting roles on your Discord server.