Discord finally brings text chat to voice channels

No more jumping between channels just to coordinate your squad.

REUTERS/Dado Ruvic

Discord's audio chat has sometimes been a confusing experience — as you can't type in a voice channel, you often have to switch between channels just to share a link or funny GIF. Clarity is coming at last, though. The service has enabled text chat in voice channels across all platforms. Each channel now includes a dedicated section where you can type to your heart's content. You don't have to join the call to participate, either, so you can pop in to offer help without too much disruption.

Voice channels now have the same permissions as regular text chats, so moderators can limit the ability to send messages, stickers and other content. Perks from 'boosted' servers, like larger file uploads, will carry over to voice channels.

The feature is free for all servers. It's available now for servers that haven't been set to "Community" status (that is, only private-use servers), but managers can opt in if they're comfortable. All servers will have text enabled by June 29th.

Discord's move could help reduce confusion, not to mention the proliferation of channels created solely to handle text chat for voice users. To some degree, it's surprising the hybrid of voice and text wasn't available before. However, it's likely to be a welcome change of pace. Critics have accused Discord of focusing too much on Clubhouse-like broadcasts, Premium channel memberships and other features that go beyond the company's original gaming focus. With text chat in voice channels, Discord is going back to basics with a feature users have wanted for a long time.