WebRTC World Feature Article

November 27, 2013

How WebRTC is Starting to Impact the Enterprise

WebRTC, as the name suggests, enables Web real-time communications within a browser via simple HTML5/JavaScript code. It is a free, open standard (currently supported by Google, Mozilla and Opera browsers) designed to connect people that want to communicate (to chat, call, engage in a video conference and more) on the Internet and on virtually any device. Basically, it provides the means to engage in Web voice and video interactions quickly and easily.

It can allow cross-browser video communications between computers and devices. WebRTC supports voice codecs G.711, G.722, iLBC and iSAC, in addition to VP8 to support video codec streams. The system is promising to transform the way people use peer-to-peer communication through regular browsers.

WebRTC is a great tool that can help people communicate without having to use a specific application like Skype or WhatsApp; it is based on an application programing interface (API), which is under development through the efforts at WHATWG, W3C and IETF. The WebRTC framework is redefining technology as of today and is in a “transformational” stage: It is undergoing changes in interoperability, intermingling of video, voice and data streams, and more; which means then, it is still going through developments in many areas.

Consumers and businesses alike are sure to find innovative ways to leverage WebRTC; for example, it can enable enterprise organizations “to extend their customer reach without adding much operational or capital overhead,” conveyed a post on UCStrategies.

Many take advantage of “WebRTC apps [to] handle multi-party calls and interact with services such as VoIP and PSTN,” said HTML5 Rocks.

WebRTC enables people to connect with other in real-time without the use of specific plugins; therefore, it is a technology that “provides a broad platform for those firms able to build, deploy and scale compelling applications or services,” affirmed Dialogic, a technical service and software-based solutions provider for application developers. The company also recently released the results of its 2013 WebRTC Impact Survey, which found that WebRTC is significant to 86.9 percent of respondents’ product roadmaps.

WebRTC is forecasted to approach installation on one billion devices by the end of 2013. Its popularity is certainly benefiting application developers; yet, it proves beneficial in the workplace too: In fact, it can have a significant business impacts that are worth considering.

Here are three significant ways WebRTC has the potential to impact a business:

  • It will turn websites into real-time communication tools (by video, messaging and voice) between customers, partners and other stakeholders.
  • It will offer improvements in communication with customers without heavy investments with features like “click-to-call” or instant video conferencing-- much similar to Amazon’s heavily promoted “Mayday” feature that gets a live representative to appear on a device display screen for 24/7 customer assistance.
  • It will offer a full collaboration experience for employees and provide easier, more seamless internal communications without the use of proprietary applications.
One thing is for certain; WebRTC can potentially have a profound effect on communications and lead to new application ideas. With mobile browsers starting to support WebRTC and other browsers investigating support for it, who knows what else is in store for the future of online communications.

Edited by Rachel Ramsey


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