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Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Google to merge video-calling apps Duo and Meet: Report

After Zoom's popularity grew manyfold, Google announced in May that Google Meet will be free for everyone till September 30 including enterprises.

By: Tech Desk |
Updated: August 17, 2020 10:16:15 am
Javier Soltero, Google duo, google meet, google duo shut down, google duo controversy, javier soltero controversy, duo meet merger, Google duetGoogle Duo app (Source: Google screengrabs)

Google is reportedly working towards replacing the video-calling app Duo with Meet in due course of time. The decision was made by the G Suite head Javier Soltero who took over the position earlier this year in May. According to 9to5Google, Soltero announced to his employees that having two video-calling apps does not make sense.

Apparently, the combination of the two apps is in process and has been codenamed as ‘Duet”. Google Meet has posed as a tough competitor to video-conferencing app Zoom which has been a hit among office-goers as ‘work from home’ became a new form. Zoom was also used for casual family and friends meeting who were unable to meet each other in-person.

Reportedly, the Google Duo team is surprised by the recent series of events as the app was widely used during the lockdown. Especially after Google announced in May that there was a total of three billion minutes of call duration in the month and close to three million daily new users. The engineers who worked on the app either left or were shifted to the Meet team.

Earlier, Duo let the users call anyone from their contact list. Then, they added the ability to call people using their email addresses. However, the update in April helped improve video quality followed by 32-person calls, a family mode, and the more popular link-based invites.

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On the other hand, Google Meet has been a part of G Suite from the start. After Zoom’s popularity grew manyfold, Google announced in May that Google Meet will be free for everyone till September 30 including enterprises. Google Meet’s integration with the Gmail app made it more accessible and easy to use.

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According to the sources, this transition will not be a short one and may take up to two years as Google has no immediate plans to interfere with Duo.

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“We’re fully invested in Duo, which has seen astonishing growth during the pandemic. People around the world are relying on video calling more than ever, and we have no plans to interrupt that. We’ll continue to invest in building new Duo features and delivering a delightful experience for our users, customers and partners. We brought the Duo organization under Javier Soltero’s leadership in May, and it follows that we’re looking at ways that our video calling products can improve alongside one another,” Google said in a statement.

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