Google currently has two video calling services, Duo and Meet. The former is primarily meant for consumers and has been widely praised for its AR features and its ability to work over low bandwidth internet connections. As for Meet, it is targeted towards enterprise customers. However, Google seemingly feels it has too many video calling apps and plans to replace Google Duo with Meet.
The decision is a result of Google bringing all its consumer services under one umbrella and under the leadership of Javier Soltero, the head of G Suite, who had announced the unified team back in May that it did not make sense for the company to have two different video calling apps. The merger has been codenamed "Duet" inside Google -- short for 'Du'o and Me'et.' The 9to5Google report states that the decision to merge the two video calling services came as a surprise to the Duo team. The sources also made it clear that Duo will go away at the end of this transition which could take up to two years.
Since the pandemic began and video calling services have surged in popularity, Google has been making rapid improvements to Meet and even made it free for all type of users. While Duo has also received some major feature updates during this time, the pace of development of the app has slowed down compared to other video calling apps.
Google has already issued a statement on the report and while it does not reference anything that's said in the report, it does not refute any of the claims made in it as well.
“We’re fully invested in Duo, which has seen astonishing growth during the pandemic. People around the world are relying on video calling more than ever, and we have no plans to interrupt that. We’ll continue to invest in building new Duo features and delivering a delightful experience for our users, customers and partners. We brought the Duo organization under Javier Soltero’s leadership in May, and it follows that we’re looking at ways that our video calling products can improve alongside one another.”
While Meet has surged in popularity, Duo itself has also become popular among consumers especially since it is now being used by many Android OEMs as the default video calling app.