Google has announced its integrating video calling into various Android apps that come preloaded on Pixel, Pixel 2, Nexus, and Android One devices. Specifically, there are now shortcuts in Android Messages, the phone app, and Contacts to quickly start a video call powered by Google Duo. You and the person you’re contacting will obviously need Duo on your phones, but this is nevertheless a step to further enhance the video calling experience on Android. It also brings Google’s FaceTime alternative more up to par with what’s available on Apple’s devices.
Google says later this year, they’ll be adding the ability to convert an ongoing voice call into a video call using your carrier’s ViLTE (video over LTE). If your carrier doesn’t have this technology, you’ll simply be rerouted to Duo. Additionally, Google says they’re working with carriers and other device OEMs to get this same experience to more Android phones.
The new integration should be rolling out to all Google-branded phones now.