Google Duo could support 32 people in a group call

Just because Google's myriad and confusing selection of messaging services now has a single team and a single exec to report to hardly means its myriad and confusing selection of messaging services are about to become unified. At least not immediately and definitely not any time soon. In the tradition of giving users more choice than they can handle, Google is now working to expand Duo's group calls to accommodate 32 people, practically competing with Zoom as well as its own Google Meet.

OK, Duo and Meet technically serve different purposes and different audiences but, let's face it, the simpler one will often be the go-to solution. Google recently removed a major requirement for people to use its more business-oriented Meet by making it free for everyone. But when it comes to simplicity, Duo is the one that was designed exactly with that in mind.

Intended to be its counterpart to the equally easy-to-use Apple FaceTime, Google expanded the group membership limit from 8 to 12 barely two months ago. It promised that it would expand it even more but has never really given a hard number. Now it has confirmed to Android Police that the magic number is 32. For comparison, Meet can accommodate up to 250 participants at once.

Google has been ramping up its efforts to adapt its messaging service to the current social distancing situation. While Meet is geared more towards office and team meetings, Duo is targeted at families and friends with more personal and intimate features like the new Family Mode, doodles, and masks.

Whether users reach for Duo or Meet, it is Google that ultimately wins anyway. And the more that people flock to these services that they may already have access to via their Gmail accounts, the less they will resort to services like Zoom or even Skype.