Now, you can have a Duo call with 32 people
In light of the ongoing global pandemic and social distancing requirements, leading technology companies have doubled down on video calling and conferencing. Google, Microsoft, and Zoom have been racing to improve their respective services to bring more people looking to connect remotely into their ecosystem. Now, as part of the same effort, Google's Duo is bringing 32-person video calls. Here's more about it.
Last year, Google allowed as many as eight participants in a single Duo video call. The limit was sufficient at the time, but when the pandemic broke out, the need to accommodate more people became evident. So, in late-March, Google expanded the limit to let 12 people (one caller and 11 participants) take part in Duo video call at the same time.
While Duo's 12-person limit was better than what WhatsApp had on offer, 4 in March and now 8, it was nowhere near the 50-person call limit of Skype and 100-person of Zoom. This is why Google is pushing to increase the participant limit to 32. The change rolled out for the web last month and is now coming to the Android version of Duo.
As per reports from 9to5Google and Android Police, the enhanced participant limit for Google Duo is just starting to roll out on Android. It is being enabled through a server-side change, rather than an app update, and will slowly become available on all smartphones. Hopefully, the release will be completed in the coming days, and will then be followed by an iOS launch.
The new participant limit is still not a match for Skype or Zoom, but it cements Duo's position in the casual video segment. Prior to this, the service had also picked up other handy video calling capabilities, including improved call quality for low bandwidth users and the ability to take and share photos while being on the call.
Like Duo, Google's dedicated video conferencing product, Meet, has also improved significantly with features like enhanced noise cancellation, virtual background, tiled layout, tighter Gmail integration, and a free tier.