Real-time access to relevant communications has seen tremendous online growth over the past few years, especially during 2012. WebRTC (Web Real-Time Communications) has not only gained in popularity in corporate environments – Google Apps and the like – so employees may collaborate on special projects and tasks, but also in social media.
Using simple Java APIs and HTML5, WebRTC makes it much easier to communicate over the Internet on a peer-to-peer basis. There will be no need to download an application or a plug-in; simply start up your browser and go.
Websites such as Twitter are feeding the demand for real-time communication. The site boasts more than 200 million active monthly users, and additional Twitter clients such as TweetDeck or Hootsuite can allow for searching of specific terms and then display the results in real-time using multiple streams, making it easier for users to interject themselves into a conversation.Cheryl Conner is a PR pundit and regular contributor to Forbes.com. In her latest article, she examined the concept of Tweet Chats.
“'Tweet Chats are where Twitter users with common interests can join on Twitter at recurring times to discuss an area of interest,” she wrote. “In essence, a Tweet Chat is like a 'crowdsourced webinar' where all participating members can speak, identifying their remarks with a unifying hashtag, such as #innochat, and a corresponding Web property.”
Using WebRTC, a company called Twelephone looks to take Tweet Chats to another level. Twelephone has developed and launched a website which allows Twitter users to place and receive real-time, encrypted, peer-to-peer, high-definition video telephone calls within their browser in seconds.
Mozilla has also begun development on video chat for its Firefox browser. In December 2012, the Mozilla Firefox team posted a video demonstrating live video calling and data sharing using WebRTC and new social API facilities embedded in Firefox 17.
“Sometimes when you’re chatting with a friend, you just want to click on their name and see and talk with them in real-time,” wrote Maire Reavy, product lead, Firefox Platform Media in a recent blog post. “Imagine being able to do that without any glitches or hassles, and then while talking with them, easily share almost anything on your computer or device: vacation photos, memorable videos, or even just a link to a news story you thought they might be interested in simply by dragging the item into your video chat window.”
As the technology continues to be adopted and improved upon in 2013, the potential that WebRTC offers is becoming more apparent.