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(Pocket-lint) - Google Duo has been around since 2016 and it's Google's answer to Apple's FaceTime, offering video and audio calling between devices. Unlike FaceTime that is only available for iOS devices though, Google Duo works across both iOS and Android platforms.

Google regularly updates Duo with new features and the latest is a Low-light mode. Here's what Low-light mode is on Google Duo, how it works and how to use it.

What is Google Duo Low-light mode and how does it work?

Google introduced Low-light mode to Duo to help users connect face-to-face, even when the lighting conditions aren't brilliant.

According to Google: "In many places, electric lighting is a significant challenge, preventing people from connecting face to face. People often light their homes with a single bulb when electricity is expensive, and even then, power outages remain common in many areas, leaving people in the dark during the evening when many video calls with family and friends happen.

"Even when electricity is not an issue, many people just want to video call to say good night right before bed, keep each other company as they watch TV together or enjoy a quick chat while they're outside in the evening."

Google Duo's Low-light mode works by adjusting the video call to make the person in the less-than-optimal lighting conditions more visible, brightening their face so the other person can see them more clearly.

How do you use Google Duo Low-light mode?

In order to use Google Duo's Low-light mode, you will need to follow the steps below:

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  1. Make sure you have the latest version of the Google Duo app
  2. Open the Google Duo app
  3. Type in the contact you want to video call
  4. Tap the sun/eclipse icon on the left of your screen
  5. The face of the person you are calling will then appear brighter
  6. Tap the icon again to turn the Low Light Mode off

If the icon doesn't appear, you may need to ask the person on the other end of the call to toggle the Low-light mode on in their settings. To do this, they will need to open the Google Duo app > Tap on the three dots in the top right corner > Settings > Toggle 'Low-light mode' on.

When will Google Duo Low-light mode be available?

Google started rolling out the Duo Low-light mode globally to iOS and Android users from 19 August 2019. Make sure you are running the latest version of the app to see if the feature has arrived for you.

Writing by Britta O'Boyle. Originally published on 20 August 2019.