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Conference calling on your iPhone is basically a single-tap process, but there are other features you should know about to make the process easier to manage.

In the past we’ve covered the many things you can do while talking on the iPhone 10+ Things You Can Do While Talking On Your iPhone 10+ Things You Can Do While Talking On Your iPhone Most of us know that we can answer another phone call while talking on the phone, and we can put a call on loud speaker so we don't have to keep it pinned to our... Read More , but if you want to talk to more than one person it helps to know how to add calls, merge them, and end individual calls without getting confused.

Did you know that with the arrival of iOS 8 What's New In iOS 8? What's New In iOS 8? After last year's big iOS 7 redesign, you'd expect a muted iOS 8 announcement at this year's Worldwide Developer Conference – but you'd be wrong. Read More , Apple even added FaceTime Audio conference calling?

Making Conference Calls

Apple allows for up to five calls to be merged using its conference call feature. While you can certainly dial individual party lines to add them to the conference, you might find it easier to access those numbers in your Contact list, reducing the need to dial the numbers.

To set up the conference, do the following:

1. Call the first person as you normally would. Let the person you call know that you’re going to add other callers.

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2. Tap the Add Call button on the iPhone.

iPhone_conferene

3. After the second person answers your call, tap the Merge Calls button. At this point notice that the names of the two callers are listed at the top of the phone. This is another reason to have party lines listed in your Contacts, because you can see their names listed during the calls.

iPhone_merge_calls

4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 for each additional call. After each call is merged, the Add Call button will re-appear. Note, you can also tap on the Contacts button to call and merge another recipient into the conference. At this point, it’s best to tap the Speaker button so you can speak all party lines without holding the phone to your ear.

Note: You may not know it, but you can also make audio phone calls using FaceTime The Ultimate Guide To Making A Call Using Your iPhone The Ultimate Guide To Making A Call Using Your iPhone When it comes to making phone calls on your iPhone, you're not just limited to the built-in apps and features. Read More over Wi-Fi and your mobile data plan. FaceTime Audio calls (not video calls) are also compatible with conferencing features, but these calls can only be made with other iPhone or Mac users.

FaceTime_calling

Handling Incoming Calls

You can also accept incoming calls during your conference call. When you receive a call, tap on the Hold & Accept button, and then merge each caller into the conference call. If you don’t want to accept a call, tap the Send to Voicemail button. Pay close attention to the End & Accept button, it will end the connection with all current conference parties.

IPhone_conference-2

If you don’t want to receive calls during your conference call, open the Settings app on your phone, tap Do Not Disturb, and manually enable the feature (also accessible from Control Center, by swiping up from the bottom edge of the phone). This will silence all incoming calls and alerts 10 New iOS 6 Settings You Should Know About 10 New iOS 6 Settings You Should Know About As with any operating system or software, you should eventually take some time to see what Preferences settings exist. The latest release of iOS 6 includes a number of settings that provide better control of... Read More .

Do not disturb

Talking Privately

During a conference call, you can talk privately with one person during the conference or end a call. To  do this, tap on the blue “i” button on the top-right. This can only be done when all the calls are merged.

IPhone_conference-1

In the next window, all the connected party lines will be listed and you can check which one you want to end or talk privately to. The other party lines will remain on hold.

IPhone_conference-10

Accessing Other Apps

During a conference call, you can actually leave the iPhone app and open other apps. To do this, tap the Speaker button in the phone app then press the Home button on your iPhone. Be careful, of course, not to tap the red phone button, which will end all calls. Now you can open, for example, a notes app or a web browser app to get information while still holding the conference call.

To get back to the phone app, tap the green bar at the top of the phone.

IPhone_conference-4

Mute Yourself

If you’re in a situation where you don’t want other people to hear you during the conference, you can briefly mute yourself, but still hear others talk. Simply tap the Mute button and you’re good to go.

iPhone_Mute

Practice Makes Perfect

You might want to practice the conference call process outlined above with friends or family members, so that you don’t feel clumsy when making that all important business or meeting call.

Let us know how iPhone conference calling works for you. And if you’re new to the iPhone, check out some other iOS 8 features you should know about iOS 8 Is Here: 10 Reasons to Install It Right Away iOS 8 Is Here: 10 Reasons to Install It Right Away If you own an iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch, you'll want to upgrade it to iOS 8 as soon as possible. Here's why. Read More .

Do you make conference calls from your iPhone?

  1. Donald B
    July 24, 2016 at 8:54 pm

    With ios 9.3.2. My "Private buttons" are not highlighted and do nothing. All else works but not the private buttons. Any help out there? Thanks.

  2. Mark
    May 1, 2016 at 11:42 am

    This does not work. The "merge calls" button is greyed out.

  3. Pam
    April 21, 2016 at 3:29 pm

    if you have 5 participants in a call already and others call in, how many more can you merge in, over the original 5?

  4. sietse
    April 21, 2016 at 9:03 am

    how many people can join is there a limmit?

  5. Rahul
    April 7, 2016 at 6:40 pm

    How to know that if someone add you to conference? Suppose one person call me i pick up the call but that call is conference and the 3rd person listning to the call. That i do not know. so how to know call is on conference.

  6. Ted
    March 10, 2016 at 2:27 am

    I merged 5 calls tonight with my iPhone 5 running iOS 9, and it worked flawlessly just as described above. Amazing! Most user friendly conference call I've ever set up. Just worked! Love it!

    • Ben
      March 15, 2016 at 12:26 pm

      How do you individually disconnect callers while in a conference call with the iPhone 5s? Do I need an app Ted??

      • Ted
        March 15, 2016 at 1:12 pm

        No app required Ben. As the article says above, all you do is:

        Talking Privately
        During a conference call, you can talk privately with one person during the conference or end a call. To do this, tap on the blue “i” button on the top-right. This can only be done when all the calls are merged.

        This article explains it all really well. I hope this helps. Good Luck! Ted

        • carl neger
          November 11, 2016 at 6:58 pm

          on my verizon iPhone 6 during conference call there is no blue I button to knock off one of the people in the conference . Is this feature only with ATAT and not verizon? Thanks in advance

  7. andrew daves
    February 26, 2016 at 9:16 am

    By following above mentioned points and using tools like R-HUB web conferencing servers, webex, gotomeeting, gomeetnow etc. one can effectively conduct conference calls.

  8. Mario
    January 30, 2016 at 11:39 am

    yup, please submitt bug report to apple. crazy as it is, before at ios8 release it worked, then stopped....21 century, my God.Skype had it for ages.
    https://www.apple.com/feedback/iphone.html

  9. Gary pulice
    December 25, 2015 at 10:13 pm

    Has anyone figured out why the merge button is greed out while trying to make conference call on FaceTime

  10. Walter Bithell
    August 27, 2015 at 6:29 pm

    Yeah, this doesn't work. The "merge" button is greyed out and you can't merge the calls. You can only swap them. I've tried this from an iPhone, an iPad and 2 iPad Minis. All running versions of iOS 8.

    • Barbarrosa
      March 27, 2016 at 4:25 pm

      Same problem here. All the instructions above are of no use once the merge button is grayed. I have conducted conference calls with my iPhone before but now I can't. Is this a new bug of IOS 9?

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