Google Duo is a video calling app and it does simply that, making video calls. Its ease of use is streamlined and it offers only a couple of key features. But that's what we loved most about it, a dedicated video calling app. It's reliable and launches fairly quickly to ensure that you can get right into your video call as quickly and seamlessly as possible.
One of the key and defining features of this app is its use of what they call "Knock knock." It lets the person receiving the call to see their caller before they even pick up.
This is where the fun part begins, it's not just a picture of your caller it's a live video of what they're doing as they are calling you. Google claims, it's a way for the caller to draw you into the conversation before you even pick up. It allows the caller to make funny faces, show their food, presents, and anything else they may be doing at the time to entice you to pick up. It's a fun and unique twist to video calling that we haven't seen before.
If you're worried about receiving unsolicited or hijacked video calls, then worry no more because the Knock Knock feature only works with contacts that are already on your contact list. If the feature isn't for you, then you can also turn that feature off in the settings menu. It is also worth noting that the Knock Knock feature only works on Android devices.
Safe and reliable
Google has designed the app to be able to switch to and from WiFi and Cellular Data efficiently. It will choose the strongest connection and switch back and forth accordingly to ensure the highest possible video quality. What if you're worried about security? Well the app also includes end to end encryption to ensure that every video call is absolutely safe and private.
Unlike Apple's Face-time, Googles' Duo will be cross platform. This means both Apple and Android users can enjoy it. Good news for those with friends and family who aren't using Android devices.
The app is still in its early stages but for what it is in its current state, it is a neat little app. There are still many features that some may be left craving like video conferencing, and screen recording. The app also requires a working phone number in order to activate, meaning you'll only be able to use it on one device. What if you have a WiFi enabled only tablet? Sorry, you won't be able to use Google Duo on that. However, I'm willing to bet that in the future Google will surely address that problem. The longer this video calling app matures, the more features and issues Google will fix with future updates. This app is only a few days old after all.
Want to see the app in action? Check out Googles I/O video promo for it here:
*All pictures were taking from Google