Google Duo’s new voice calling feature finally starts rolling out to everyone

Duo is one of the two chat apps that Google introduced last year. Duo’s focus is video calls while its sibling, Allo, takes on the text-based conversation scene with the help of AI-powered smart assistant Google Assistant.

Since its launch last year, Duo has handled voice calls well. Even in spotty network conditions, Duo is known to hold up on its own and at times even resort to just delivering audio to both parties in a video call before finally giving up. Cognisant of the need to keep conversations alive even when the network connection doesn’t allow, Google announced the arrival of audio calls on Duo officially last week.

According to Google, voice calling using Duo was to come in handy “…in those moments when video calling isn’t an option—like when you’re about to hop on a crowded bus or have a poor network connection—you can stay connected with family and friends through audio calling.”

However, as at last week, the feature was limited to just users in Brazil where it was announced. Today, Google has started rolling it out to all Duo users around the globe.

Google’s head of product for Allo and Duo, Amit Fulay, took to Twitter to share the good news:

7 months ago when Duo launched, Amit Fulay took to Google+ to confirm that Duo would be gaining audio calling support at some point. That day has finally come.

Google Duo head Amit Fulay confirms voice calls will be coming later

As Duo gains the ability to make voice calls, its sibling Allo is getting the ability to let its users share files like documents, MP3s, APKs and so on with each other.

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While I may not be such a fan of Allo, and quite a number of people clearly aren’t if the app’s huge fall from grace in the Play Store rankings is anything to go by, Duo is a fantastic application by all means. It does one thing and does it so well. The addition of audio calls, which has been long overdue, might be just what it needs to be able to succeed as this now allows it to be able to compete with the likes of Skype, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp’s voice calling features.

In case you hadn’t given it a spin, yet, Google Duo awaits you on the Play Store.

Emmanuel Chenze

Let's just say I know my stuff. I have 7 years experience handling, tinkering with and then writing extensively about Android stuff. Sometimes it is exciting, sometimes it is not; things can get stale with nothing new to show but I live for each one of those moments. Have something Android-related that you believe I need to have a look at? Hit me up: echenze@androidkenya.com