Live Streaming / WebRTC

WebRTC is an open-source project enabling plugin-free, Real Time Communications (RTC) in the browser. It includes the fundamental building blocks for high-quality communications such as network, audio, and video components used in voice and video chat applications.

See it in action by clicking Here!

Who is supporting the WebRTC project?

The development of WebRTC is supported by the W3C, Google, Mozilla, and Opera. Other parties with a vested interest in the standard include Apple, Microsoft, Ericsson, Cisco and countless smaller real-time communications companies.

What is the goal of WebRTC?

WebRTC aims to give the development community access to open, high-quality, real-time communications technology. Before WebRTC, this type of RTC technology has only been available to large corporations who can afford the expensive licensing fees or through proprietary plugins like Adobe Flash. WebRTC will open the door for a new wave of video, voice, and data web applications.

Where does WebRTC work?

WebRTC is currently supported in Opera, Google Chrome versions 23+, and Mozilla Firefox versions 22+.

Why is WebRTC important?

The WebRTC project is incredibly important as it marks the first time that a powerful real-time communications (RTC) standard has been open sourced for public consumption. It opens the door for a new wave of RTC web applications that will change the way we communicate today.

  • Significantly better video quality
       WebRTC video quality is noticeably better than Flash.
    Up to 6x faster connection times
       Using JavaScript WebSockets, also an HTML5 standard, improves session connection times and accelerates delivery of other events.
    Reduced audio/video latency
       WebRTC offers significant improvements in latency through WebRTC, enabling more natural and effortless conversations.
    Freedom from Flash
       With WebRTC and JavaScript WebSockets, you no longer need to rely on Flash for browser-based RTC.
    Native HTML5 elements
       Customize the look and feel and work with video like you would any other element on a web page with the new video tag in HTML5.

    Get a comprehensive overview of WebRTC from Justin Uberti’s Google I/O 2013 session:

     

  • What are the WebRTC development roadblocks?

    1) The video codec debate. Browser vendors, outside of Google and Mozilla, can’t agree on which video codec—VP8 or H.264—should be included in WebRTC.

    • What is VP8?
      VP8 is a video-compression format created by On2 Technologies and owned by Google. VP8 was open-sourced by Google in 2010. When compared to H.264, VP8 is rarely used.
    • What is VP9?
      VP9 is the successor to VP8. As with VP8, VP9 will be open sourced and available for free. T
    • What is H.264?
      H.264 is a standard for video compression, and is currently one of the most commonly used formats for the recording, compression, and distribution of high-definition video. H.264 is patented by the MPEG LA group.
    • Why does WebRTC use VP8?
      The standard committee has chosen to use VP8 due to H.264 licensing issues with the MPEG LA group.
    • Do either of those video codecs work on mobile devices?
      Both codecs can work on mobile devices, but to get truly real-time performance and quality, mobile phones must have hardware to help decode the video. As of today, only H.264 hardware is found in mobile devices.
    • Where do all the interested parties stand on the issue?
      Company VP8 H.264
      Google
      Mozilla
      Opera
      Cisco
      Microsoft
      Apple
      Ericsson

WebRTC is fundamentally changing communications with the unprecedented ease of use where the browser is your “all-in-one” communications device. The adoption of this new standard (by estimates 1 billion devices this year) is providing opportunities to recast communications with customers and employees.

By leveraging innovation, strategy and timing WebRTC can provide a new and rich environment to establish market leading solutions and revenue opportunities.

WebRTC brings the promise of significant productivity gains through collaboration, instantaneous rerouting of communications traffic, with the ease of embedding communications capability inside of an existing business process

  • Doctors being biometrically authenticated and able to remotely approve prescriptions and procedures through a secure channel – maintain dialogue with the patient and transfer video feeds in real time.
  • Service technicians being rerouted in real time based on workload and changing customer priorities; real time mapping customer locations and communicating with the dispatcher and the customer, with a click of a mouse or device.
  • Customer service calls leveraging skills based routing algorithms to ensure the customer has the right representative based on the question or web page and others conferencing into the call based on the complexity of the question and the value of the customer.
  • IT manager finding the resource at the right time based on LDAP dip, looking at skills, locations, and a dip into the calendar to see availability for reassignment based on the issue.
  • During times of natural or other kinds of disasters, communications and collaboration applications instantly rerouted, real time conferences set up with a touch of a finger with highly secure communications and hacking eliminated.

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