Google has announced four new features that it will be bringing to users in the near future; they include better video call quality, the ability to snap moments, increased group chat sizes, and the ability to save AR messages rather than having them expire after 24 hours.
In the coming week, Google said that Duo will begin using a new video codec technology called AV1 which will improve video call quality and reliability even if you’re using a very low bandwidth connection. This new feature joins end-to-end encryption and AI to reduce audio interruptions making for an overall decent video chat client.
The second new feature, which Google has begun rolling out today, lets you take a picture of important moments that occur during the call. The photo is then automatically shared with everyone in the call. Right now, the feature is limited to smartphones, tablets, and Chromebooks but will be available on more devices soon.
Since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, we’ve seen an explosion in the use of Zoom, a video chat application that allows many people to join a call. What looks like an attempt to challenge this, Google has recently increased the group limit from eight to 12 but in the coming weeks has plans to further increase the participant ceiling.
Finally, the firm says you’ll be able to save AR messages in Duo rather than having them expire after 24 hours. This will help people preserve the meaningful messages that they receive while under lockdown.
Google Duo is available on Android, iOS, tablets, web browsers on Windows, Mac, Chrome OS, and on smart speakers and smart displays such as the Nest Hub Max. The firm said that it hopes these features will make users feel more connected “if you can’t be physically together.”