Google Launches Duo, Makes Video Calling as Easy as Voice

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Google has unveiled its simple 1-to-1 video calling app dubbed – Duo, available on Android and iOS devices.The app which can now be accessed globally works off your phone number to bring you face to face with everyone you care about, without needing to sign up for a Google account.

According to Google , “Video calling is the next best thing to being with someone in person, but too often it can be a frustrating or complicated experience. You shouldn’t have to worry about whether your call will connect, or if your friend is using the same type of device as you are. Duo takes the complexity out of video calling, so that you can be together in the moment wherever you are”.

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To get started, all you need is your phone number and you’ll be able to reach people in your phone’s contacts list. No separate account is required, so you can sign up in just a few steps. From there, you can instantly begin a video call with a single tap.

Google claims that Duo was built to be fast and reliable enabling video calls connect quickly and work well even on slower networks, adding that call quality adjusts to changing network conditions to keep you connected — when bandwidth is limited, because the app automatically reduces the resolution to keep your call going clearly.

One feature you would definitely find interesting is Duo’s Knock Knock functionality  which gives a preview of incoming calls from your contacts, so you can see what’s up before you answer the call. This particularly helps you connect with the caller before you even pick up. The feature can be switched off, and only works on iOS if the app is already open on the user’s phone.

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Google said that Duo works on WiFi and cellular networks, and will hand over a call from one to the other.  So if you’re on a call and move out of WiFi range, no need to worry as the app switches onto the cellular network and vice versa, without any interference from you. “For video calls on the go, Duo will switch between Wi-Fi and cellular data automatically without dropping your call. You can start your call at home, and continue seamlessly even when you head out the door”, the search giant said.

The app has also been optimized to connect faster than other video apps, and to ensure it stays in sync, even on slower networks like 2G.  To protect your privacy, all calls are encrypted end to end, making them secure from start to finish.

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