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Duo 5.0 brings video quality improvements, simpler signup, more


Google today began pushing out the latest release of its new Duo video calling app, version 5.0. While Google has become notorious as of late for giving its apps huge version bumps and few actual changes, this one — which officially only has “bug fixes” — brings just a little bit more than you might expect…

If you’re like me, you’re always curious to know exactly what sits behind that mysterious “bug fixes” label. According to Google’s Justin Uberti, the technical lead for Duo, this update brings four main changes:

  • Major video quality improvements
  • Simpler signup flow
  • Seamless camera rotation
  • Fix sound not playing issue

Since I don’t really use Duo all that much, I honestly didn’t notice the video quality improvements when I was testing the new version of the app earlier today. But I believe Uberti when he says that they’re there somewhere. The app’s slightly simpler signup flow and “seamless camera rotation” are minor changes, and the most minor of them is the last.

But perhaps something that probably won’t get mentioned is that it looks like Google is creeping ever-closer to finally enabling audio calls in Duo. While the app’s strings.xml has long referenced audio calls (so it’s not exactly a secret), today’s update brought yet another change: the addition of a “contact action” for audio calls.

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Avatar for Stephen Hall Stephen Hall

Stephen is Growth Director at 9to5. If you want to get in touch, follow me on Twitter. Or, email at stephen (at) 9to5mac (dot) com, or an encrypted email at hallstephenj (at) protonmail (dot) com.