Google made a change to the online version of Duo earlier this year that meant you could log in and start a call without needing a phone number linked to your account. This made starting a video chat simpler for you but hasn’t helped anyone get in touch with you. Google is working on a toggle, according to Jane Manchun Wong on Twitter, which will allow people to contact you at Duo even if they just know your email address.
When digging into Duo’s Android app, Wong found the ability to make you ‘reachable by email address’ and says Google is working on it at the moment. It will open you up to calls from far more of your friends, including someone you may not know well but who happens to have your email address, but if you don’t feel comfortable with that, you can just take it off.
It’s unclear if you’ll still be able to log in to Duo and make calls on an Android phone without connecting your phone number, as you can now with the web version, but adding that feature at the same time would make sense. There’s no saying when to roll out the new option, but it’s unlikely to be too far away. With other new features, such as wider community calls for improved performance at low bandwidth, Duo matures just when we need it most.