Google has launched and killed so many communications services and apps that it’s not even funny to joke about it anymore. Whenever a new one comes along, we inevitably wonder how long before the company will bury its features into something else it has, or just kill it entirely – only to then launch something similar a few months or years later.
Well, the time has come for Google Duo to get the axe. At least that’s what sources are telling 9to5Google. Duo was launched many years ago alongside Allo, which was supposed to be the text chat companion to Duo’s video chat functionality.
It was always surprising how Google missed that people may want to use one app for both text and video chats, but anyway, long story short – Allo had a very quick demise, while Duo has so far lived on, even adding support for group video calls (despite how that conflicts with the app’s shortsighted name).
And yet – Javier Soltero, Google’s G Suite chief, was put in charge of its consumer communication services back in May. And it looks like he doesn’t think Duo and Meet should coexist. Thus, Meet will be Google’s one and only video calling service, for both consumers and enterprises.
This is said to be internally described as a merger of the two services, which is codenamed Duet (because Duo + Meet = Duet). This development has shockingly come as a surprise to the Duo team.
It’s unclear exactly when Duo will be sunset, apparently it could take up to two years until we’re there. Anyway, before that happens a few of its features will be brought to Meet. Things such as end-to-end encryption, 3D effects, and being able to contact users via phone number will all make the cut.