Google launches Duo, its cross-platform answer to FaceTime, for Android and iOS

The no-frills FaceTime competitor is simple to use and gives you a peek at the video right from your lock screen.

After we saw a sneak peak of Duo earlier this year, Google’s straightforward, cross-platform video calling app is now ready for the masses. Google Duo launched on Tuesday and is here to do battle with FaceTime and Skype, giving the Mountain View behemoth a potentially stronger competitor than the woefully underperforming Hangouts.

Google first showed off Duo at its I/O conference in May, promising that the new app would be very simple and focus more on the human element by offering you a live view of the video before answering the call, thanks to the Knock Knock feature.

google duo call

The Knock Knock feature gives you a live video of the caller before you answer.

In the launch announcement, Google says that all calls with Duo are end-to-end encrypted. Beyond that, the app is very simple by design, without any additional connections to messaging or other Google services. For a deeper dive, you can check out the obligatory YouTube video with lots of happy people.

Duo is available now in the App Store and Google Play Store.

Why this matters: Hangouts has long been a mess, offering a buggy and inconsistent experience for video calling and messaging. Duo is the first of Google’s new, well, duo of apps designed to remedy this. Allo is an iMessage-style app that should also launch soon, promising to bring you cross-platform messaging bliss with the smarts of the new Google Assistant.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags GoogleMessagingfacetime

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Derek Walter

Unknown Publication
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?