Google Duo merger with Meet starts rolling out on Android

Google Duo 4

At the start of last month, Google announced that Duo is becoming Meet and adding all of its features over the coming months. Google Duo’s Meet merger is now beginning to roll out on Android. 

After updating to the latest version (169.0.459621665.duo.android_20220612.16_p6), a handful of users are seeing a “Duo is getting even better” card just underneath the search field. This is far from a wide rollout. Google links to this support article to learn more.

Your Duo app will become Meet, with a new name and icon, and more features like background effects

After tapping the FAB (Floating Action Button), which drops “call” and just says “New,” you now have options to “Create a new meeting” and “Schedule in Google Calendar” that originated from Google Meet.

Google Duo Meet merger
Google Duo Meet merger
Google Duo Meet merger

The latter is something that Google says consumers are increasingly looking to do, while enterprise users want more instantaneous one-click calling. Tapping opens what’s essentially the Google Calendar creation experience with a prefilled Meet URL.

Meanwhile, “Create a new meeting” gives a link with options to copy, “Share,” and “Join meeting.” That meeting will appear on the tweaked homescreen under the new “Meetings” section, which will also list any scheduled events from your Calendar. 

Before starting a meeting with the new app, Google shows a privacy page noting the move away from end-to-end encryption (E2EE). [Update: Google says 1:1 calls and group video that you start by ringing directly still “uses end-to-end encryption to mask data with a code that only you and the other callers have access to.” However, “Meet Meetings in the Duo app” that are accessed via links leverage “cloud-encryption measures.”]

  • Meet uses cloud encryption to keep your conversations private. Unlike end-to-end encryption, cloud encryption lets you use more features like chat and live captions.
  • Your Google Account name and pronouns will be shown to others in a call.
  • People you have previously blocked in Duo can join calls in Meet.
Google Duo Meet merger 4
Google Duo Meet merger 5

We’ve so far received one report of this rollout. Google previously told us that the merger will be closely monitored so that users aren’t left behind or see quality degradations. What’s starting to happen today with Duo getting existing Meet features is Phase 1. This includes virtual backgrounds, in-meeting text chat, real-time closed captions, and up to 100 (from 32) participants.

The next step will see the Duo app renamed to Google Meet with that existing icon/branding. This change will happen later in the year.

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