Google Duo homescreen redesign adding ‘New Call’ button


With Meet getting Google’s full attention over the past year, Duo has not seen a meaningful update in quite some time. Google Duo is soon receiving a homescreen redesign that adds a “New Call” button that hopes to simplify the app.

Update: A few hours after publishing, the new UI is already appearing for some users. It’s very straightforward with the blue “New Call” FAB appearing in the bottom-right corner. There’s also a top search field to look for contacts and dial, while the rest of the page is a grid of circular contacts.

This button is meant to serve as a starting point for key actions in Duo, including starting calls to other users — as well as your Assistant “Home” device — and groups. You’ll also be able to see (and invite) contacts and create groups. The people list can also be surfaced via search.

Google has yet to share any images of what this looks like, but the latter incorporation made possible by the “New Call” button suggests this homescreen will be much shorter than the current one. 

The company emphasizes that it is “keeping all the features you love” amid this reorganization. You’ll be able to send messages (video or audio), note, or picture by tapping a contact/group and clicking on the “Message” button, which is possible today. 

Inspired by your feedback, we have taken steps to simplify the Duo home screen while keeping all the features you love.

Old: Left, center | New: Right

In all, this makes for a rather sizable Google Duo homescreen redesign. It comes at an interesting time and after a period where Google’s full attention has been on Meet. The company notably added all of Duo’s filters and fun effects directly to Meet in Gmail this month. 

Duo’s “New call” button will begin rolling out “over the next few weeks” (h/t Android Police). While no platform is specified, this will presumably come first to the Android and iOS mobile clients. 

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