How to Have a Video Call From the Water

From Sea, Pool, Lake or Bathtub

I’m a bit of an aquaphile. I really enjoy swimming. If the water is pleasant to be in, clean, calm and at a nice temperature, I like to swim in it all day long. I just really love swimming. Sea, lake or swimming pool, doesn’t matter. Given the freedom, I can spend all day in the water and come out for breaks only reluctantly. In my childhood, I frequently did 12 hour shifts in the swimming pool, during which I wouldn’t come out of the water once.

Summer brings out my inner water demon even more than usual, and while I know most of you probably don’t share quite that level of enthusiasm for swimming, I’m sure summer brings out a bit of the water demon in you as well. So if you’ve been spending a significant amount of time in the water this summer and you’re looking to spend more, you might be thinking you’d like to get in touch with others via video call online without leaving the particular comfort of your pool. Or whatever body of water you’re dipping into. While this isn’t an ideal scenario to use video conferencing software, we’ve come up with a few ways to make it a smooth experience for you.

Read this list to connect with friends and family from the water whilst using virtual video calling software, without spending a lot of money on expensive phone or tablet coverings. Or having someone from your family or loved ones hold out a device for you at the edge of the water while you strain to make yourself heard. Instead, we hope to help you make the water video call and virtual meeting an easier fix than it currently is. For you and for your other fellow water demons this summer. And we hope to do that without costing you a bit of money you can probably avoid spending.

1. Buy a Waterproof Phone Pouch

You can buy a waterproof phone pouch for a relatively small amount of money. Some of your local stores should be offering that option of a very affordable waterproof pouch. As you can see from the image, the pouch is transparent plastic. What you can’t see is that it’s also relatively adapted to allow you to use touchscreens through it. Of course, given that we’re going for the cost effective option, you may need to tap your icons once or twice more than you normally do, but once you get the hang of it, it shouldn’t give you any trouble.

Encased in a protective pouch like that, your phone shouldn’t have any trouble helping you in making a video call online from wherever you’re swimming, provided you have access to a good, strong internet connection.

While we’re looking at the most cost effective options, consider buying a waterproof phone pouch online, although the cheapest of your options would likely take too long to arrive in some locations; which means summer might end before they arrive. Still, the pouches that arrive late will make great gifts for someone next summer. And given the low prices you can get them for on some websites, you might as well buy yourself a spare! As well as buy your friends a few!

Just make sure the pouch you get has a cord or lanyard so you can secure your phone around your neck. Or if that bothers you while swimming, like it does me, you can go ahead and double twirl the lasso hole around your wrist to make a bracelet of the cord while you swim.

2. Swim (or Bathe) Somewhere With Reception

Back in 2019, before the COVID crisis ground all travel to a halt, I took a trip back home to one of the world’s most beautiful beaches. To get there from the closest town, you can go one of three ways. On foot, by boat or by camel. I’m not even sure if you could get there by horse, donkey or mule. To get there by car you’d have to take a four by four through an off road route carved into the mountains and rocks from a town further away. The latter route doesn’t even show up on google maps. You’d need a satellite view to make it out. I elected to go there by boat, and I continue electing to do so. I’ve found it to be the fastest way, and it’s quite fun. Naturally, reception at this beach is less than reliable. At times, it’s nonexistent. Making a video call over there is far from a good idea and I avoid it if I can, opting to text instead.

The moral is, if you know you’d like to make a video call from the water, swim somewhere you’re fairly confident in finding good reception for your cellular data. Better yet, a place with a wide Wi-Fi coverage. I don’t just mean your back yard either. Or a local hotel swimming pool. There are beaches nowadays entirely covered by very strong Wi-Fi. Of course if you’re going somewhere with good reception but you’re reliant on external connections for high quality internet because your data plan isn’t ideal, there may be other, portable options to strengthen your internet connection. However, if this is the case, it may be cheaper to simply upgrade to a higher data plan for the summer. Or you could keep the upgrade. This depends largely on the deals available wherever you’ll be using your data, or on the roaming agreements your local telecom providers have abroad.

To summarise, if your data package is adequate for video calling, it may be easier to stick with swimming locations where the reception is good enough to enjoy a high quality video call. Of course, if your internet connection is less than ideal, it might be a good idea to use a video conferencing software solution which allows for optimising the quality of your video call. Banty offers numerous video calling solutions and all of them offer you the option to control the quality of your video call.

3. Double Check Your Device

Make sure your device is up to par for a video call. If you have multiple devices you can use from the water and you’re using a swimming pool or a tub at home, that might be less of a problem. But if you’re going to the beach and nothing you brought is good for that video call you decided you want to make, it’s already too late. Device malfunctions can happen with even the most high end brands and if you’re relying on a cheaper device as a holdover till you purchase a strong new one, it’s important to make sure it won’t fail you at the wrong time.

Start by double checking how well it connects to your data provider and to WiFi. Once that is done, make sure to double check the acoustic abilities of your device; which is to say your device’s microphone and speakers. The final thing you need to check is the image the camera shows, and how that image translates as a video feed. Preferably do all your tests from within the waterproof phone pouch I advised you to buy above.

If your device passes these tests at one point but fails them when the tests are repeated a few times it’s worth weighing your options. If you really want to make a video call from the water then maybe go to the trouble (and possibly the expense) of bringing another, better functioning device with you. If failing to make the video call wouldn’t bother you that much, then you can give it a try and if doesn't work, just wait until you’re somewhere that you can use other devices with virtual meeting solutions.

These are the three main things to mind when you seek to make a video call from the water. Happy swimming, water demons! Enjoy your time off and don’t forget to pack sunblock or sunscreen if you’re swimming in the great outdoors this summer!

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Abdallah Al Alfy

Alfy is a content writer of 17 years, writing in multiple literary and content disciplines, and translating professionally since his early teens. Full name of Abdallah Al Alfy, he is also a licensed pharmacist in multiple countries. Alfy’s pharmaceutical background has often been an asset in scientific and medical writing.