WebRTC World Feature Article

January 09, 2013

WebRTC vs. Chatwing - Is There a Dominant Solution?

Examine the telecommunications industry as a whole and we’ve come a long way in just in the last two decades. A closer look at online options identifies how those tools once only available to fictional characters on Sci-Fi movies are now available for everyone, erasing the miles separating conversations and enabling truly visual, real-time communications.

Access to broadband solutions and high-speed data connections enable the use of Skype, click-to-chat and even video conferencing. The challenge with any of these options has been the presence of the right software solutions to support the preferred communication. Skype is easy to use, but you must have Skype loaded on your PC; video conferencing can enable face-to-face communications, but you must have the right software to allow for the visual interactions.

WebRTC aims to change this, eliminating the need to download any type of software or application and still communicate in real-time. While the overall concept is still in development, it’s already been adopted by Google and Firefox, with other industry leaders set to come on board. When adopted as the standard, all browsers will allow users to simply input a URL to connect with another individual, or individuals, in real-time via the Web.

Not everyone is waiting for WebRTC’s adoption across the board, however. One company, Chatwing, has developed a chat application it believes is reliable and efficient with better customization options to empower connections on social media platforms. The goal, according to this announcement, was to improve the Web chat tool by providing users with real-time and global connectivity. The latest version includes social media integration and conversation control features for faster and more purposeful interactions.

In the market, Chatwing positions its chat software as providing an improved experience with online presence and visibility. It’s built for compatibility with most blogging and website platforms and the installation process is touted as quick and uncomplicated. The company suggests the application is ideal for marketers and entrepreneurs seeking to maximize online promotions. 

While the Chatwing application appears to touch on key user needs, it still requires the download of the software to make it work. When chatting, both chatters need to have the same software in place to experience the optimal benefits. And, it’s not available on every platform, further limiting its usability across the board.

Users seeking to enjoy real-time communications via chat – and video chat – can enjoy the capability without added commitment with WebRTC. And, with further acceptance among the power players in the online world, the technology is likely to be the dominant force. For instance, this Gigaom post highlights the latest move by Google in adding a key component of the WebRTC framework to its latest beta Chrome browser.

Now third-party developers can build video chat applications that do not require a downloadable plug-in. Even better, the technology could evolve to eventually enable Google Hangouts video chats using Chrome. As the search giant aims to replace its proprietary plugin with WebRTC, the new standard has the potential to be a significant disruption to mobile video communication.

Edited by Rachel Ramsey


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