Google announced a couple of new apps at the Google I/O in the form of Duo and Allo. Google stated that the apps will be made available later in the summer and looks like Google has delivered on it. Duo, the simple video calling application is now rolling out to public and is on the Google Play Store. You cannot use the application as it requires you to sign up for ‘pre-registration’, but it is nice to see that Google is sticking nicely to the timelines.
There is no information on Allo though yet, and a case could be made that Google would eventually launch the two apps with the final version of Android N, when it comes out later in the year. Duo is largely seen as Google’s attempt to take on the likes of Facetime and Skype and does pretty much what Google Hangouts did but in a simpler fashion. You will be able to place one on one calls with your friends, using phone number rather than a Gmail ID, so you will be able to make a Duo call with anyone in the contact list, as long as they have the app, a bit like Facetime.
Duo uses QUIC protocol for making the calls, which generally will lead to better call quality and good reception, even on a limited internet speed. Duo will roll out both on Android as well as iOS. The only difference in the implementation is that Android users will be able to see a live feed of someone who is making the Duo call to them in real time even before the call has been answered, while for iOS users, this Knock Knock feature will only be available when the application is open.
You can go ahead and pre-register for the application on the Google Play Store here.