Drop everything and download: Google Duo

  • Drop everything and download: Google Duo

Drop everything and download: Google Duo

Google's latest app, Duo, attempts to recreate the simplicity of FaceTime but works across Android and iOS. Announced earlier this year at Google I/O, the one-to-one video app is the search giant's attempt at simplifying the often too complicated task of video calling. You just need your phone number and then you will be able to reach people in your phone's contacts list. Video calls on Duo will be in HD formats but the app will adjust the resolution based on the available interned speeds.

One interesting addition to Google Duo is a feature called "Knock-Knock", which allows users to see a video of who is calling before accepting that call and turning on their own phone's camera.

Google first announced Duo at its Google I/O developer conference in June, when it also previewed a new text messaging app called Allo.

It is now rolling out on Android and iOS devices. All it requires is your phone number - no separate account. In that recent Google survey, one in six US adults indicated that they don't engage in video calls because they feel it is rude.

The app was made available in the USA early Tuesday morning, and was expected to roll out in Canada later in the day.

However, as Wired points out, the problem with Duo may be one inherent to all video-chatting apps - they're awkward.

Pro. Simple way to make and receive video calls. For example, we asked if there are plans to support group calls or build a desktop app. Now only available to Android users, Knock Knock shows live video from the caller.

Google is essentially covering both Android and iOS in messaging and video calling with two unique, fun and secure applications. It's no wonder that almost half of us never make video calls on mobile.

There are no stickers, doodling options or additional messaging features compared to what's available on Snapchat. With the advent of Duo and Allo, Google has maintained that Hangouts will be transitioning to an "enterprise" product. You might not want to answer when a friend is video calling from a loud party or concert, and now you'll know ahead of time. Google calls this feature, "Knock, knock".

In terms of the techy stuff, a function called QUIC (Quick UDP Internet Connections) detects when your wi-fi is not so great and switches to mobile data, meaning the quality of the video is superior and seamless.