The 1 billion download club on the Play Store is a pretty exclusive ones, with most apps belonging to Google's or Facebook's (including WhatsApp) conglomerate. Now Skype is joining this elite club and getting the coveted 1 billion round bubble on its Play Store listing.
There was a time when video calling someone was synonymous with Skyping: very few other competing services existed and even then, they weren't as attractive since everyone was on Skype. But with Facetime, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger's video calls, Hangouts, and the more recent Duo, Skype feels like the old exec who's trying to stay relevant by throwing "cloud" and "mobile-first" at every board meeting. Read More
Over the last few months, Google has been taking small steps to integrate Allo and Duo into different pieces of the phone. Most recently, Allo shortcuts were added to the Contacts app, but today's teardown is more closely related to Duo recording its video chats to the system call log. It looks like Google's next step may involve having its Phone app be a little more forward about Duo. Read More
According to a report from Bloomberg, Facebook is building a video calling device for the home, in what is essentially a new product category. It apparently has a laptop-sized screen and smart camera technology that gives users the impression of being in the same room as one another. Read More
If you use the encrypted messenger Signal, you may want to be checking for a new feature that is rolling out to the stable version of the app. Video calls are coming — and yes, this was added to the beta version just a few days ago. To accomplish this, Signal is overhauling its entire calling infrastructure (which should improve voice call quality, too). Read More
WhatsApp is one of the most popular messaging apps on the planet, so even small changes warrant some attention. This isn't a small change, though. This is a big one. WhatsApp is rolling out support for video calls in the Android app, but not everyone has the feature yet. Read More
Google's Duo video calling application has been out for about a week now. It was released on August 16, but it took 2 days to propagate globally. That's also how long it needed to make its way to the top of the free new apps on the Play Store.
With one week under its belt from worldwide release, Duo is celebrating another milestone: over 5 million downloads on Android. Sundar Pichai made the announcement on Twitter:
As a major component of what appears to be a big push to revamp its messaging offerings, Google has announced Duo, a video calling app. As the name suggests, it is focused solely on two-person video conversations.
Unlike Allo, which Google insists is bringing some fundamentally new features, Duo is all about simplicity.
As far as novel features go, the closest we get is that when you receive a video call, you can see the live video of the caller before you answer. That should make for some really fun experiences. Read More