Google's new video chat app, Duo, is meant to supplant the video calling function in Hangouts and convince users to deviate from their loyal use of other solutions like Facebook Messenger, Kik, and Skype. Naturally, since a number of video chat apps out there have large user bases and fairly comprehensive feature sets, Duo needs to have a secret sauce up its sleeve to convince users, and that secret sauce is simplicity. It does boast a few features, such as "Knock Knock", which allows callers to see the other party before formally starting the video call, but for the most part, if both parties have it, it's as simple as making a phone call. Thus, Duo isn't too terrible of a choice for a packed in app on Micromax's four upcoming video call focused smartphones.
The four budget phones will all come in around the $100 or less territory and presumably feature "good enough" specs and features. India's focus as a country on rolling out reliable and widespread 4G LTE networks makes now the perfect time for the rise of video calling, according to Micromax, and the way they plan to take advantage of it is to leverage Duo's feature set, arguably perfect for this situation. Duo is built for adapting to different network conditions, and its simplicity ensures that most, if not all users will be able to take advantage of it. This is reflected in the fact that India is already one of the top countries in download rankings for Duo in the short time since its release.
The four phones that will feature Duo out of the box will be part of a so-called "video series", but Micromax has yet to confirm whether or not the phones will technically be a part of Google's Android One program, in which Micromax was an early partner. Since Duo only requires a phone number and another user with the app, it does not support cross-device syncing or a number of other features that other video messaging apps currently boast, but that may be part and parcel to its future success in India and other developing markets where simplicity in mobile devices and low network resource usage are key. Micromax plans to use this move to not only bring video calling to the suburban and rural masses, but to popularize and associate their own devices with video calling in those territories.