Google Duo and Meet will soon become one

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Google Duetthe company’s video chat service for consumers, will soon merge with Google Meetingscompany’s video chat service for business users.

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The Duo app will soon get all the features of Meet, including scheduled calls, and then change its name to Google Meet once the transition is complete. At this point, the current Meet app will simply launch the new Duo/Meet app. It’s a little tricky, but to be honest, migrating millions of users to a new platform has always been an ordeal.

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All this is not a big surprise, given that Google has already shut down. Hello, a chat-focused sibling duo. Both were launched in 2016 as Google already offered many text and video chat options. Now Google is finally unifying most of them under the Chat and Meet brands.

Image credits: Google

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Javier Soltero, CEO and VP of Google, told me that this move has been in the making for quite some time. Back in 2020, the company merged the Duo and Meet teams with the goal of bringing the two products together into one. “We believe it is incredibly important and strategically important for Google to be able to serve the full breadth of the video market, from consumer use to organizational and commercial use, with a common service platform and product whose user experience is defined by the same sense of simplicity and intuitiveness,” he explained.

Dave Citron, director of product management for these products, also noted that with the onset of the pandemic, both Duo and Meet suddenly saw their usage increase rapidly and found a new type of product-to-market fit. This forced teams to look for ways to speed up iteration. “The great thing about bringing the teams together is that we have combined the best of both products with each other, solidified the foundation and… now it’s pretty easy thanks to the work we’ve done over the past few years to take this last step and actually bring them all together.” Citron explained.

Image credits: Google

Over the past few years, Google has actually added a number of Duo features to Meet, and now the Duo app will soon get all of Meet’s features, including scheduled meetings. This will happen over the next few weeks, although Soltero and Citron noted that Google will take a very measured approach here and monitor its numbers for potential issues and slow down the process to fix bugs if necessary.

It’s no secret that Duo and Allo were originally intended to be consumer-facing versions of the more business-focused Google Chat and Meet. But that’s clearly not what consumers wanted – especially in the case of Allo – and if anything, the pandemic has helped blur the line between people’s work and personal lives even faster than anyone could have expected. Google’s colleagues at Microsoft saw the backfire when they launched a personal version of Teams.

Citron stressed that the general idea is to leave no user behind. Duo users should be able to continue using the app even if the name changes, just like before. If they don’t want to make appointments, they don’t need to (though both Citron and Soltero note that now more consumers than ever are also scheduling in-person appointments). Similarly, Meet users will be able to continue using the app for their scheduled meetings, but now they will also get the ability to make ad hoc calls with their contacts without having to go through the call setup process. And those of you who use Duo today on a Nest Hub Max or similar smart speaker (or even a TV) will be able to continue to do so in the future.

In some ways, it’s surprising that it took Google this long, especially considering that both Duo and Meet at their core use the same WebRTC open standard. If anything, the existence of Duo alongside Meet has caused some confusion among consumers, especially since Google opened Meet to everyone during the pandemic. Getting users to choose between two different tools for related use cases is not easy to explain, and Soltero acknowledged it.

“Part of it is also motivated by what we have always believed to be true, which is that no matter how many tools you have – and media in particular – if you are not good at letting people create the right choices for the right circumstances – then you really don’t making the world a better place, right?… People just still these days – and certainly in the course of the pandemic – don’t necessarily have a better intuition about which tool to use under which circumstances,” he said. He argued that Google has the ability to solve this problem by giving users the choice, depending on how accessible a particular person is to the addressee at a given time, and search for people, for example, by phone numbers or email addresses.

To some, it may seem like Google is looking for reasons for this move after the fact, but most importantly, this chapter of the Google video chat confusion is finally coming to an end, and for me, the Meet/Duo combo app just makes sense and could make me use the ad hoc meeting platform more often. . Now about Google Hangouts…


Credit: techcrunch.com /

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