Google Duo video messaging software is about to get a big boost in call quality, thanks to the company’s new video codec technology that it plans to carry out next week. The codec, dubbed AV1, is the result of an industry-wide partnership called the Open Media Alliance.
AV1 is the successor to VP9, which can achieve substantially higher data compression rates than previous standards, making it ideal for mobile video applications such as streaming TV shows which live video calling.
Google says all Duo calls now use AV1, allowing video calls even at low bandwidth look much higher quality than before. The move in codec will also help with the quality of video calling.
Google is also introducing a new photo mode for Duo starting today in addition to the AV1 update, so you can capture and then share side-by-side images of you and another person on your call. The app will extend “soon” to group calls. Google also says it plans to raise the group call size from 12 attendees to make it even higher after increasing the cap from eight last month.
With the rise of video calling and teleconferecning during the coronavirus pandemic, companies such as Google and competitor Zoom are rushing to introduce new features while ensuring security and privacy stays intact, especially in the case of Zoom. Earlier today, Google added to its company video calling app, Meet, a Zoom-like gallery view.
Google also said the use of Duo is seeing an impressive boost, including an 800 percent rise in video messages. That’s why Google says it’s changing its policy on such video messages, which can be filmed and sent to friends for after-the-fact viewing, and they can be saved automatically rather than expire after 24 hours.