Google Duo live sharing lets you watch YouTube with friends and work with them too
The Android video chat app is adding more ways to share.
Mike SorrentinoSenior Editor
Mike Sorrentino is a Senior Editor for Mobile, covering phones, texting apps and smartwatches -- obsessing about how we can make the most of them. Mike also keeps an eye out on the movie and toy industry, and outside of work enjoys biking and pizza making.
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Google's Duo app is adding a new set of "live sharing" features that will let you quickly share photos, notes, watch YouTube and work together across certain apps when video chatting across Android phones.
Announced Wednesday as part of the Samsung Unpacked event, Duo's live sharing will first support collaboration on Jamboard, group notetaking in Samsung Notes and image sharing through the Gallery app. You'll also be able to use it to watch YouTube videos as a group and search for locations using Google Maps.
While Duo on Android already supports screen sharing, the live sharing features go a step further by letting all participants access playback controls or otherwise directly control the app they'd like to share with everyone else.
Group YouTube watching on Duo is notably different from doing it over Apple's FaceTime, which requires you to share your phone's screen to watch a video with a friend. Apple does have its own SharePlay feature, which also allows a group to collaboratively watch videos and listen to music, but supported apps are mainly subscription services such as Disney Plus, HBO Max and Apple Music. All participants need to be subscribers to use those apps, unlike on YouTube.
While we haven't tested this update on our own devices, Duo's live sharing features sound like they could be a faster and less bandwidth-intensive alternative to screen sharing.
Live sharing will first launch on Samsung's Galaxy S22, Galaxy S22 Ultra and Tab S8 devices. A Google rep told us that other Samsung and Pixel phones will be next. Other Android phones will follow later this year, but these features aren't currently planned for Duo on other platforms such as iOS, Google TV and the web.
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