Google Duo has become a bright star in the search giant’s gloomy social media apps for consumers. Since the outbreak of coronavirus and lockdown, Google has added new features to make Duo the best video calling service. From portrait effect and low-light mode to increased number of users on group calls, Duo has added a number of new features in the past few months. Now, it is making the service more useful regardless of the platform. Also Read - Google Duo adds capture mode and improved calling over low-bandwidth connection
The video calling service will soon add support for group calling on the web as well. Yes, this will allow Duo to replace Zoom and Skype for simple video calls. It is also adding features such as link sharing and a family mode. Google Duo expanded group sizes from 8 to 12 at the end of March and plans to increase the limit further to 32 callers in the “coming weeks”. With these features, Google Duo will need better layout to see all the people on the call. Google Duo has already previewed a new layout as part of this expansion. Also Read - Google Duo will use machine learning to improve audio quality during calls
The video calling service is experimenting with a six-person grid and a carousel of faces underneath that you can scroll through. Now, the search giant has announced that Duo on the web will support group video calls as well. The feature was previously limited to the Android and iOS apps. The feature will start as a preview on Chrome and will be expanded gradually. The service will also let you invite anyone with a Google account via link to the group conversation. The feature seems to be borrowed from Google Meet, which is now available for free. Also Read - Google Duo increases group calling limit to 12 participants
Google Duo is also adding a new family mode, a way to make the service kid-friendly. The feature is essentially adding fun capabilities to the existing service. Some of the features include doodling that everyone on the feed can see. This is in addition to effects and masks available for one-to-one conversations. When you are on a call, you can enable family mode by opening the menu and tapping on the “Family” option.
The app gets smarter with every new implementation, including the family mode. The app hides the mute and end call buttons in this mode to prevent premature disconnect. In order to get started, you need a Duo account and must sign in with your Google Account. These new features come amidst a scenario when almost everyone is now connecting to their loved ones via apps. Google has also rolled out a ‘Everyone can Google Duo’ ad to further make the app interesting to Google users.