Google Duo has now lifted the limit for the number of people that you can have in a group video call from eight to 12.
Google decided to up the limit now because it "recognizes group calling is particularly critical right now." And Google is definitely right, with that thinking. With many people not able to visit their friends, and family right now, being able to do group video calls is the only thing keeping people sane.
Google Duo still lags behind other video chatting services
While Google Duo has made the jump to 12 people in a call, they do still lag behind the competition.
Apple currently allows 32 on Facetime, 50 on Skype and Facebook Messenger, and Zoom allows up to 100 on its free tier.
However, Google has hit a sweet spot here, offering a decent amount of people in its video chat, but not so many that you can't get a word in edge-wise. Think about it, a video call with 30 people, it's going to be tough to get a word in. Unless it's a meeting, then being quiet might be better.
Weirdly, though maybe not that weird since this is Google, Hangouts Meet actually supports even more people on a call at once. But keep in mind that Hangouts Meet is made for enterprise customers. So it's more useful for doing meetings within your company and so forth, rather than chatting with your friends and family. But many still believe that Google should combine both services. Instead of having two drastically different services, under the Google umbrella.
Another way to keep in touch
Google Duo is here as another way to keep in touch with your friends and family during this time at home. It's pretty easy to use, and most Android smartphones do have it pre-installed now. Google Duo makes it easy to find your contacts and you can even invite them to Duo. Calling is also super simple, and even the Google Assistant can help you make a call.
Duo is meant to be a very easy way to make video calls. And it works on Android and iOS, as well as on Chromebooks. So no matter what phone someone has, they'll be able to use Google Duo and talk with you. That's what makes Duo better than Facetime right now, since it does work cross platform. Unlike the majority of Apple's services. Definitely a major benefit for Google.