1How Google Duo Is Shaking Up the Video Conferencing Crowd
2Google Is Emphasizing Simplicity
3Cross-Platform Support Is a Biggie
4The Service Works Across WiFi and LTE
5There’s a Neat ‘Knock Knock’ Feature
Google Duo includes a “Knock Knock” feature that alerts users to an incoming call. The recipient then has the ability to look at a preview of the video call before deciding whether to answer. It’s an especially useful tool when someone receives a call from a person he or she doesn’t know, and isn’t sure why they’re calling.
6Google Is Promising High-Quality Video
7What About Google Hangouts?
Duo technically competes with Google Hangouts’ video-calling feature, but Google said at its I/O Conference earlier this year when it announced Duo that it would not abandon Hangouts. Instead, it expects both apps to live on and provide users options on how they’d like set up video conferences. However, Google Hangouts On Air, the company’s live-streaming service, will be discontinued in September.
8There Are iOS, Android Requirements
9Here Are Its Chief Competitors
Duo has several competitors, but arguably its chief opponents are Apple’s FaceTime, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. Skype also might fall into that pack, although Skype is a bit more sophisticated to serve business users. Google has designed Duo to be simple to use, and that’s what Facebook and Apple, especially, are trying to achieve.
10Duo Has a Thing for Security and Privacy
Google noted in a blog post Aug. 15 that the company’s Duo application was built “with an emphasis on privacy and security.” To that end, Google has said that all video calls between users are “end-to-end encrypted.” In other words, there is no way for third parties, including law enforcement and even Google, to see what two users are chatting about on Duo.
11Duo Is a Free App With No In-App Purchases
Google seems committed to making Duo as accessible to as many users as possible. The app description notes the program is free and includes no in-app purchases. Google has so far said that it has no plans to change that strategy in the future.