How to Use Google Duo on the Web

One of the best video chat apps, now in your browser

Google's Duo Video Chat Service, Previously on Mobile, Is Now Available on the Web

Google

Considering the success it's had with Gmail, Google's history with other forms of messaging applications is a little rockier. But the company has recently revised its strategy, and part of that was the release of its main consumer video messaging application, Google Duo, on the web.

What is Google Duo Web?

Duo is Google's video-chat application. It's a competitor to FaceTime on iOS, with the added bonus of being available on both iOS and Android devices. While there are some other Google applications (notably Hangouts) that also support video conferencing, Duo is aimed more at the casual user, providing an easy-to-use interface to quickly connect with friends and family.

Previously, there was no way to use the app on desktop systems, but Google has solved that with the introduction of Google Duo Web, a version of Duo that runs directly within your browser. If you're worried it won't be as functional, don't be; this version of Duo is just as good as its mobile app counterparts. What's more, it doesn't require a full installation (though you'll need to allow it access to your webcam and microphone), and its available on any platform running a modern browser, like Windows, macOS, Linux, or Chrome OS.

Google Duo Web Pre-requisites

In order to use Duo Web, you'll need to have:

  • A modern web browser, such as Firefox, Edge, Safari, or Internet Explorer. Of course, Google's own Chrome browser is preferred.
  • A fast Internet connection. While you can try to use it with whatever you have available, the performance you get may be choppy and difficult to understand.
  • A microphone and speakers. Most laptops have both of these built in, but for desktops you may need to purchase a mic.
  • A webcam. This can be either built-in or one you add via USB.

How to Use Google Duo on the Web

These instructions should work on any desktop operating system that supports the Google Chrome, Firefox, or Safari browsers.

  1. Signing into your Duo Web account is as easy as signing into Google. From your browser, go to https://duo.google.com.

  2. The Duo Web interface it pretty sparse. You'll see your most recent calls listed at the top of the window, with the contact's name, picture, and the date of the call. You can select one of these to re-dial that individual if that's who you're looking for.

    The Duo Web Interface Puts All Your Contacts Front and Center

    Your other contacts are listed beneath, with their picture, name, and phone number (if available). However, this list doesn't comprise your entire contact list in Google. The list here is limited to those people who also use Duo.

  3. To place a call, select the name of a recent call or contact. This will display a chat window shown, provided you've allowed Google Duo access to your microphone and/or webcam.

  4. When you're ready, select either Voice Call or Video Call, whichever you prefer.

    You Can Easily Initiate a Voice or Video Call by Clicking a Contact, Then the Call Button
  5. Once you're ready to end the call, select End Call to hang up.

    Click the
  6. That's all there is to it. You're now able to chat over Duo using any available web browser.