Google is merging its Duo and Meet video calling apps – Times of India

NEW DELHI: Google is merging its two video calling apps — Duo and Meet. The tech giant has announced that soon users will have only one video calling app — Google Meet. The company said that it will be adding all the Google Meet features to the Duo app allowing users to easily schedule a video meeting at a time that works for everyone, or continue using video calling to instantly connect with a person or group.
The company also adds that later this year it will rename the Duo app to Google Meet. The company reveals that Google Meet remains its single video communications service and will be available for everyone at no-cost. Google also said that video calling features of Duo will exist after the merger. For instance, users will still be able to make video calls to friends and family by phone number or email address, use fun filters and effects, send messages, and ask Google Assistant to call using existing devices. All conversation history, contacts, and messages will continue to be saved in the app and there will be no new app to download.
In an official blog post, Google said, “What’s been really important is understanding how people make the choice as to what tool they’re going to use, for what purpose, in what circumstance. Our digital lives are filled with a million different chat apps, each with its own rules and norms and contact list, some for work purposes and some for personal ones. Google’s hoping it can use Gmail addresses and phone numbers to bring all that together. It’s really important and powerful to be able to reach you that way and allow you then to decide whether you want to be reached or not, as opposed to having to manage all of these different identities and deal with the consequences.”
Google further mentions that the upgrade will provide improved features to Duo users. These features were earlier available only to the Meet users. The new features coming to Duo include:

  • Customize virtual backgrounds in calls and meetings
  • Schedule meetings so everyone can join at a time that’s convenient for them
  • Use in-meeting chat for deeper engagement
  • Live share content to enable interaction with all participants on the call
  • Get real-time closed captions to better support accessibility and boost participation
  • Increase size of video calls from a current limit of 32 to 100 participants
  • Integrate with other tools, including Gmail, Google Calendar, Assistant, Messages and more

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