WebRTC World Feature Article

January 27, 2015

A Chat with Acision: WebRTC Needs to Get Creative

WebRTC is a technology that has created a lot of buzz over the past few years, but there is still much left to theory and the imagination when it comes to practical implementation. Where will WebRTC find its true niche? When will consumer adoption kick-start more widespread integration? At the WebRTC Conference & Expo, Acision’s chief marketing officer, JF Sullivan, shared his thoughts with Webrtcworld regarding the technology’s potential and where he thinks it’s headed.

The first and most obvious application for WebRTC is in customer service, as it allows agents to share and collaborate in real time with customers through any browser or device. But Sullivan feels that in this vein the technology hasn’t really taken off the way it could. Sure, it’s a useful feature in providing more personalized customer service, but the market demand might be too narrow, and until it expands into a broader market, the technology will probably remain a topic of interest more than a profitable solution.

“Eventually, [all this talk] needs to lead to some sort of business proposition so people can actually monetize it and get it out there,” Sullivan suggested. “Wouldn’t it be better if they had an even more creative [WebRTC] solution, so that there was a broader consumer option than customer support?”

Acision is one of the largest infrastructure providers out there for mobile operators, handling about 45 percent of all message traffic globally for traditional messaging systems, and between 62 and 83 percent of all mobile phones overall in any given year. With such heavy involvement in the mobile space, Acision has a unique position in terms of looking at how mobile operators are deploying WebRTC. “They are pretty creative in certain emerging markets about how they use and leverage WebRTC,” Sullivan noted.

One of the major hitches in WebRTC adoption, for now, is the fact that Microsoft and Apple seem to be dragging their feet on using it, which means that total penetration of WebRTC into the application market isn’t quite there yet. If Microsoft and Apple were players in the WebRTC space right now, Sullivan said, there would be more of a validation in the market overall, and the technology might garner more attention and development across many industries.

In particular, WebRTC could have exciting potential in the video app market. As Sullivan sees it, consumer demand is ultimately what will be the driving force that pushes WebRTC into the mainstream. “Call centers are interesting, but they aren’t going to drive a lot of adoption. You get an equivalent SnapChat-like application based upon WebRTC? Suddenly Apple and Microsoft will support it, because they want to get to those consumers.”

To continue the discussion of WebRTC adoption, check out ITEXPO Miami, taking place this week. On Thursday at 2:30 p.m., experts and thought leaders from GENBAND, Oracle, Ghostpoint and Super Technologies Inc. will be hosting a panel titled “Making WebRTC Work: From Theory to Practice,” during which they will explore the possibilities and roadblocks of this up-and-coming technology. 

Edited by Maurice Nagle


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