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My Group FaceTime calls don’t ring on the receiving end. However, if I call recipients one at a time, their end rings and they pick up. It doesn’t matter who I call (my parents, sister, or in-laws) or if I call from my iPhone 12, my wife’s iPhone 12, or either of our iPads Pro. All of our devices run iOS 14.x (this has been happening since January and I haven’t noticed a change across updates). The receivers all use new iPads (we bought the family iPads in January to FaceTime with our daughter), but lack the skills (and we lack the patience) to help troubleshoot.

Is there a fix for this?

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    This is a tough one - especially if someone muted the group or blocks someone I the group or do not disturb is on or dozens of other things. I removed the “I can’t Google this effectively” and made it what I feel I face trying to troubleshoot something remotely. You need a camera and assistant to help someone else with their technology. Perhaps someone knows just how to fix this.
    – bmike
    Apr 30, 2021 at 11:15
  • Did you have a chance to try my suggestion?
    – JBallin
    May 12, 2021 at 16:37
  • @JBallin I think you're right that Group FaceTimes get a notification and a subtle chime by design (I consider this a bad design choice!). Our call recipients aren't helpful and never initiate calls. However, we're visiting one next week, so we will be able to properly troubleshoot! I'll let you know what we discover. May 12, 2021 at 20:09

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AFAIK Group FaceTime calls don’t ring by design (unlike 1:1 FaceTime calls) - they instead send a notification.

To ring everyone on the call: swipe up to open the menu on the bottom and press “ring” next to each person’s name (simultaneously).

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  • You're correct. Group FaceTime members receive a short notification. The "Ring" button inside the call will send a longer ring to that member. But our issue is not this default behavior, but that our members don't hear notifications for other reasons (e.g., poor hearing, loud TV, iPads in drawers in other rooms). May 20, 2021 at 16:15
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In the end, no matter how motivated you are to solve someone else’s problem, you can’t. Due to privacy designs, you do not get to know if someone else has blocked you or has do not disturb engaged or their device is just messed up.

In my experience, having a couple people one very slow rural cable Internet with buffering and lag means I have to call them one at a time (sometimes via landline) and have them start the “group call”.

  • Have you tried having someone else initiate the group calls?

And the next time I’m physically visiting anyone where the group call struggled, I might ask ‘How is your tech doing?” Only if they want help do we go intotheir iCloud and notification settings if they feel they are having problems. Most of the time they like it how it is and either intentionally or unintentionally don’t want all their devices ringing every time a group call starts. Only one time did my relative say “yeah, this is really bugging me let’s get to the bottom of it.”

My group FaceTime calls are super reliable with people interested in keeping their contact list clean and understand push notifications and have got their devices all set up to be notified by FaceTime when a call starts. If they want a group call, listen if they prefer zoom or let them drive the timing / orchestration of it would be my advice. Stick to 1-1 calls (or smaller groups) if those are the ones they tend to answer.

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    Thanks, a lot of good info here. It's possible that all three of them muted Group FaceTime rings. But I don't hear rings on my end, either. And I get right through to them if I add them to the call one at a time. I think you're right that we'll have to wait until we're together to troubleshoot. Apr 30, 2021 at 11:57

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