Since launch, Google Duo has required a phone number to both set-up and reach other users. Last November, Google began working on an email address option that is finally rolling out this evening. Version 31 allows users to link their Google Account to the video calling service.
Earlier today, the Google Duo support page added a document that detailed how to “Connect a Google Account.”
To connect with other people easily, link your Google Account to Duo. People with your Google Account, like your Gmail or phone number on Duo, can see that you use Duo and call you using the app.
With version 31, the ability to add a Google Account is now available. There is a new section in Settings — just under your phone number — to “Add Account.” Tapping the button opens a prompt and picker that notes how others “will soon be able to call you on Duo using either your email address or phone number.”
However, for the moment, that setup appears to be the extent of the new functionality. In our testing, we have not been able to reach a person with just an email address.
The most notable upcoming aspect of Google Account linking is how it allows for multi-device support. Since its inception, the video service has only permitted one active sign-in with a phone number. While Allo gained a web client, Duo remains highly inconvenient for those with both a phone and a tablet.
According to our APK Insight from last month, connecting a Google Account will allow users to log into multiple devices at the same time. Meanwhile, teardowns also hinted at the option to just use Duo with an email address and no phone number.
Hopefully, these features will become available in the coming weeks as Duo 31 fully rolls out via the Play Store.
Dylan contributed to this article