Technology

Google wants a single video messaging app, Google will combine Meet and Duo

The long-running rumor that Google Duo and Google Meet merge is actually happening. Google officially confirmed the move yesterday, explaining in a blog post that the goal was to create a “single video communication service” and that the Duo brand would go in favor of Google Meet.

As the Google Duo brand dies, it seems the Duo codebase will survive as the foundation of the new Google Meet. Google says existing video calling features from the Duo are here to stay and “in the coming weeks, we’re adding all Google Meet features to the Duo app so users can easily schedule a video meeting that works for everyone, or an individual or group.” Continue to use video calling to connect instantly. Later this year, we will rename the Duo app to Google Meet, our single video communication service across Google that is available to everyone free of charge.

Google Meet.

The move comes after Google merged its communications teams under Google Workspace VP and GM Javier Soltero (author of Google’s blog post) in 2020. Google has not specified which products are being integrated, but this should mean that Google Hangouts, Google Meet, Google Chat, Google Messages, Google Duo and Google Voice will all be under one roof.

Here’s a quick overview of the long history of Google Communications apps: Google Duo launched in 2016 as a standalone video chat app with a “companion” messaging app called “Google Allo”. Google failed in its bid to buy WhatsApp two years ago (Facebook acquired পরিবর্ত 22 billion instead), so it fired its photocopiers for Google Allo, a direct WhatsApp clone. It used SMS-based phone number identification instead of a Google Account and was limited to one device at a time, following the way WhatsApp works.

It seemed strange to launch two communication apps at the same time, but the idea was that Google could pitch the Duo as a partner of Allo as well as WhatsApp. Typically, a company is expected to include video chat capabilities in its new messaging app – such as Hangouts or Facebook Messenger or (finally) WhatsApp. Probably, though, Google knew that it could not compete with WhatsApp Jugarnot in chat, so a separate video app was created, with a WhatsApp clone to go along with it. WhatsApp users can stay on WhatsApp for chat, but they can add this duo app to their arsenal.

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