Many Android users dream of gaining access to Apple-branded services, which the company from Cupertino has made exclusive only on its devices, but there are worthy alternatives with Google. I discovered this when I selected Android as my main smartphone and I needed to replace FaceTime with something else. Not that I lost the opportunity to use it, because the devices on iOS and macOS from my arsenal have not gone away. It’s just that when you have an Android device with you and you need a video connection, it becomes a real problem. Therefore, I began to search.
What is the alternative for FaceTime on Android?
I didn’t consider Skype because of low video quality, Viber too, since I only use Telegram, so I needed something perhaps less universal but similar to FaceTime in terms of comfort. Fortunately, I didn’t have to go far, because the solution to my question was preinstalled from my box on my Honor View 20. I just went into the Google services folder and found Duo (You can download Duo from the Google Play here). I heard about this app before but I didn’t have to use it. As it turned out, this was in vain, because the Google option was even better than FaceTime.
The first thing I noticed was the Knock-Knock function. It allows you to see who’s calling you before you answer. Everyone evaluates this function differently, but for me, it seemed very convenient. Thanks to this function, you can determine in advance where your caller is located and understand what the conversation will be about and, which is also important, discern who they are with. It cannot be ruled out that on the other side of Duo, someone who you might not want to talk to will be next to the caller.
In case there are several people you need to talk to there are group calls in Duo. Unfortunately, although group calls are available in FaceTime, they don’t work on all devices. For example, on iPhone 6, FaceTime does not support them, but Duo has no problem.
Why is Duo better than FaceTime?
Video quality in Duo is brilliant, however, this depended on network. A good picture requires a stable connection to the Internet and it also consumes more traffic. Nevertheless, in the settings, you can turn on the economy mode or the normal mode, where the image remains just clean, contrasting and most importantly, smooth.
Duo even has a night mode. Unlike in other applications, it’s really used for its intended purpose, not by coloring the interface in dark colors, but by “drawing out the picture” if one of the callers is in low light conditions. This happens automatically. Google warns the night mode depends on your smartphone and where you’re located, so sometimes it may not work well. But again, I found everything to work okay.
Other features of Duo:
- Voice calls
- Video messaging support
- End-to-end encryption
- Sending “hearts”
Should I use Duo?
Now let’s move on to using Duo. Like FaceTime, Duo allows you to register with your phone number and Google account. It is enough to simply confirm the registration with a code from an SMS that will be sent to your phone.
You can also use Duo on a variety of operating systems, both on iOS and on Android, plus Windows, macOS and Linux. The app doesn’t have a separate client for desktop platforms, which may not be as convenient as in FaceTime, but there is a web version.
I don’t know how it happened, but I’m so used to Duo, its features and logic, that I simply transferred all my relatives to this service and practically stopped using FaceTime. Why? I just liked the way Google implemented its app. All the features like face tracking, night mode and video messaging really make Duo a very convenient communication tool and cross-platform makes it super-versatile and there are no restrictions like there are with FaceTime.