It's been a while since Google's Chrome team laid out in their WebRTC roadmap plans to implement the HTML5-based real-time audio and video stack, but with today's release of Chrome 23, that dream has now become reality. With this embedded functionality, Chrome users can now initiate video calls from within the browser, without the need for a Flash plug-in or anything at all outside of the browser itself and a Bistri account.
Chrome is the first browser to implement the new W3C P2P communication standard, which was established by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and lays out the standards that must be followed in real-time communication between browsers.
In order to take advantage of this service, users must first have the latest version of Chrome installed; you can check your version by typing “chrome://chrome/” in the address bar and if it says 23.0.1271.64, you're ready to go. Sign into your Bistri account, regularly or via Facebook, or make a new account on the Bistri website and make a video call with any other person also running Chrome version 23. You can even test it out on your own by opening an incognito window (Ctrl+Shft+N in Windows, Linux and Chrome OS and ?+Shift+N in OS X) and pasting your Bistri link in the url bar there.
An incoming call will let you choose the webcam and microphone you prefer to use on the top-right of the screen. Chrome will ask if Bistri.com can use your camera and microphone. And that's it!
The Bistri service features a number of video effects to play with and conversations can be set into full screen mode with the click of a button. Furthermore, a "take snapshot" button makes it easy to capture photos of the video session. These snapshots can then be immediately shared on Facebook, Twitter or via e-mail and SMS if you so choose.
Edited by Brooke Neuman