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  • Category: Smartphones

    Is Google Duo App effective when compared to Skype

    Are you keen to know if the recently launched Google Duo App will be effective when compared to Skype or other forms of online communications? Ask our technical experts.

    Is Google Duo App is effective when compared to Skype or other forms of online communications? Has anyone tried it? How it works?
  • Answers

    3 Answers found.
  • Well, it could be too early to predict and compare the usefulness of Google Duo in comparison to Skype and other competing video calling apps. It has been just a week and we may need to wait to see how it develops.

    One of the features that score for Google Duo is the simplicity it provides you. The interface is quite clean and neat with practically no clutter. The app works with your phone number and thus there is no need for any username or password. In that sense, it is comparable to WhatsApp. There is no complicated setup procedure involved in the app unlike other video callers out there.

    Google Duo aims to do what WhatsApp did with SMS. It is following what is called low entry barrier. Yes, it could be an issue to convince people to join a new service just for video calling, more so with the existing apps planning to come up with video calling features. WhatsApp is a clear provider in this context. They have already ventured into voice calling, and now intend to introduce video calling by the last week of August this year.

    There are some positive notes with Duo. It does adjust itself with the quality of network available to you. You will get uninterrupted and seamless video calling experience that does not fade away, or vanish with the change in the network. It can switch seamlessly between WiFi and cellular data.

    Lack of a desktop client could be a feature that could work against Duo. A Mobile Only approach has been the Google plan - at least as of now. They may come up with different approach later on. You will not be able to use it on multiple devices with a single account.

    Group calls are not offered currently on Google Duo. However, Google has not ruled out the possibility of introducing it soon. It says the app is still new and may evolve later.

    And yes, I would treat the cross platform nature of the app as one of the strongest points in its favour. You will be able to make video calls across operating systems and that would form a point for making decision in installing Google Duo.
    As a comparison, I would see FaceTime as the lone competitor for Google Duo when it comes to clutter free video calls. The Facebook Messenger makes it a little less intuitive to use video calling feature. Even Skype has much cluttered interface. The single button approach will definitely a great feature in favour of Duo.

    The users won't need to enter the contacts on Google Duo manually. It will access your contact list on your phone just like WhatsApp would do. Other apps like Skype would need you to enter the contacts manually.

    Having said all that, I would still maintain that these are early days as far as the success of Google Duo is concerned. Let us give it some time till it gets its acts right. GFor now, the app looks promising.

    Live....and Let Live!

  • Let's try and answer your question one by one.

    Is Google Duo App is effective when compared to Skype or other forms of online communications?

    It'd not be reasonable to compare the Google duo with the Skype. The reason being skype is a VOIP platform. Whereas the apps such as Duo, Facetime and others are designed for person to person communication. So skype has completely different target audience to serve compared to the Duo.

    Skype's recent update however covers almost every feature of Duo. You an now access the contact list for potential skype user. You can also make the paid calls from the app itself while purchasing credits through the app interface. This was having issue in last year which is fixed for most of the asian nations. Skype's ability to add multiple people into the conference is supported in this update too. Let's compare that with Duo. Duo has yet to have hangout like capacity for the video chat. The current version is limited to 1 on 1 communication this is unlike skype. Duo app also gets you option to use the audio only call feature which was the case with skype too. Skype is multi platform and available on web and desktop too. This is something we can't compare because Duo is not VOIP service like Google voice and Skype. Calls are free with Duo whereas Skype requires paid calls for non Skype numbers.

    Duo however can be compared with the Facetime and similar app like that. You can find that pretty much facetime like features exist with the Duo a bit more on being platform neutral as an added advantage. As Duo service will soon be available on other platforms such as iOS soon replacing hangout. Another app you can compare with is WhatsApp, though its more for text communication but Video features of Whatsapp are similar.

    How it works?

    Using Duo is really simple. All you have to do is install the app from Google Play Store. When you open the Duo, the app shows list of people who have the Duo app installed. Those people appear at the top of the list. This is one of the issue of the app because not all people have downloaded this app. So finding the person who has the app is possible only based on this listing. You can then call them and see if they wish to communicate. If your call is missed by someone, it shows the "missed call" notification on their phone. You can send SMS too for missed as well.

    Another interesting feature of the app is transitioning of full screen view with simple toggling. The animation for that is very cool and it will definitely something may adopted by other apps. When you make the video call by default your video view is visible, which you can turn off from the top option. This is something you can do if you are more interested in audio call. There is also mute button, which can be tapped on screen. Apart from that you can use your phone's sound settings to manage the sound.

    Blocking of caller is one such feature which is also included. And though it is a bit harder but possible. There is also one security related benefit that google says the calls are encrypted and would not be tampered. It uses signal encryption protocol. So though encryption is debatable issue, it'd be worth taking a look at the app that allows such features.

    At the end, the reason why google jumped into this is because they are working on video and audio quality over low bandwidth. And that's something should be appreciated as the Duo app works with better latency compared to facetime and whatapp video call.

  • Till now Google Duo has claimed to be a very basic app, without any frills. And that how the developers wanted it to be. They made sure that it stands as a simple to use app where the user can communicate with ease. FaceTime too is a similar app, that works quite the same way as Google Duo does. All you have to do is choosing a contact, starting up a video call and then go ahead by tapping the screen to navigate through the options like selecting the front and rear cameras, mute or unmute the microphone or hanging up the call.

    Few things that you don't get in Duo
    There are some missing features which can bring down the Google Duo app in comparison to Skype. There is no option for group calling, you don't get to send or receive instant messages, which I think is a big drawback, as there are situations when the calls might drop in the middle of a session, and to remain in touch the IM would have come handy.
    There is only a person-to-person video calling feature available in duo . There is no way to move around the thumbnail of the video as we get to find them in Skype.

    Highlighting features of Duo :

    The most highlighting features that you get in Duo are:

    1) One can easily see the video stream of the caller before answering the call. They call it Knock Knock.

    2) One can switch between Wi-Fi and mobile data and the call keeps going without any interruption.

    So, if one needs to continue with a call uninterrupted and needs to get in touch with one user at a time, then Duo will perfectly suit the purpose. But for group calling and sending messages, Skype would remain unbeatable. And so with WhatsApp.
    To be specific it is generally the target users that decide the popularity of the app in comparison to its rival ones.

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