The APP Test Series: Testing Tango Mobile Video Chat

Hidely-ho, Neighborinos! Welcome to the final test for our series on Mobile Video Chat apps. As you can tell from the title, this time we tested the video chat app “Tango” to see how it would perform under certain networking conditions.

Tango video chat with a DSL connection in the US
A screenshot of me using Tango with a DSL connection in the US.

Tango video chat with bad networking conditions
A screenshot of me using Tango with impaired network conditions (emulating a conversation between the US and Asia).

For each of these tests my brother and I used our mobile phones, separate WiFi connections, and a Linktropy Mini2 WAN Emulator.

You can see our testing in the video below as I repeat the same series of actions:

    1) Count to five on my left hand.
    2) Switch to my right hand and wiggle my fingers.
    3) Wave to the camera vigorously with my right hand.

Out of the three video chat apps we tested, Tango had the best video quality although it appeared to be more affected by network impairments than Skype. As shown in the video, there was a brief moment when the video froze (during a “domestic” call) which worsened significantly once we emulated a conversation between the US and Asia (by adding latency and packet loss). Regardless of the potential connectivity issues, I preferred Tango over the other apps (Google Talk/Vtok and Skype) simply because its video quality was pretty fantastic. Skype had noticeably poorer video quality, regardless of being a domestic or international call, and Google Talk (Vtok) distorted the images being transmitted. Granted, I still might opt to use Skype for an international call if Tango’s lag started driving me crazy but Google Talk (Vtok) doesn’t seem to have any benefits over either app so I’d definitely leave that one out.
To read the prior entries on our Mobile Video Chat testing, check out:
Coming up – a wrap-up review of the video chat apps along with more reviews of other network reliant apps. Feel free to suggest apps you’d like to be reviewed at [email protected]!

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