Google Duo for Android may allow people to contact other users using just their email address, tipped Jane Manchun Wong, a known reverse engineering expert. Wong tipped the launch of the new feature on Twitter through an image showing a new “Reachable with email address” toggle on the Google Duo app. It is also being interpreted as Google's preparation for allowing Google Duo use without adding a phone number at all. The company has already done so for Google Duo on Web, according to a report. This could add to the several changes Google has been announcing for the video-calling app off late.
Wong said in a tweet, “Google Duo is working on ‘Reachable with email address' setting” while sharing a screenshot of the option. The option has been tipped to show up in the Account section of Settings. The screenshot says that it would “let people contact you on Duo with your email address.” Currently, the users can contact others by using their phone numbers.
9to5Google reported in January that Google allowed the use of Duo for Web without linking a phone number. You can do video calls by just using an email address. However, the accounts that don't have a mobile number linked don't show up in the contact list. 9to5Google said this could mean that the same ability may come to the Android app as well.
It's not clear right now whether Google will allow the accounts with only email address on Android. But with the possible new change, reaching people via email address might be allowed.
Google last month announced that it is adding a “Duo Moments” feature for users to take screenshots during video call. It also said that it is increasing the number of participants in group video calls to 12. It is also working on providing better experience, even on lower bandwidth connections.