Although it may be a little premature to declare Web Real-Time Communication (WebRTC) as “the” dominating technology of 2015 – it is certainly starting to show strong signs of future potential.
Earlier this month at a developer conference, communications giant AT&T announced that it will be the first US carrier to commercially support the initiative and take advantage of the seamless browser-to-browser audio, video and messaging communications offered by the technology. The company also revealed that it has enhanced the basic WebRTC standard with a new open beta program for the AT&T Enhanced WebRTC API.
The following day, at the 2015 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Acision announced an agreement with WebRTC specialists Blacc Spot Media Inc. to further boost development efforts.
The mobile messaging company also revealed details about a new developer contest – “forgeathon” – whereby entrants will be able to use the company’s forge by Acision SDK toolkit in order to create winning Android, iOS or Web apps. Furthermore, Blacc Spot Media will also be sponsoring a developer contest called the WebRTC Challenge.
In addition to Google Chrome, WebRTC is also supported by the Mozilla and Opera browsers – and we hear that Microsoft intend to support the technology in Internet Explorer. Currently, Apple’s Safari browser does not offer support, and the company is remaining somewhat tight lipped about any future intentions.
However, Google and various other companies have been fairly active on the project; with Google operating the webrtc.org site and further examples available on GitHub.
WebRTC is under consideration as a standard on the API level by the W3C – and as a protocol by the IETF. Although the technology is relatively new and details are still being ironed out, many experts believe that the project will become increasingly mainstream as implementations of the project evolve.
AT&T, for example, said that its implementation has improved upon the basic technology in a number of ways. In a statement, the company said: “The first enhancement is that Enhanced WebRTC communications can now extend to land lines and mobile numbers, not just P2P or browser-to-browser sessions. This is valuable for developers and customers and will spur growth by eliminating a key barrier to adoption.
“A second enhancement is the ability for developers to programmatically enable Caller ID for WebRTC communications through the use of their end user’s AT&T mobile number, for calls placed from WebRTC-enabled browsers. Last, developers now can enable end users to move or transfer a call starting on a PC, Mac or tablet to a smartphone.”
In an interesting new article, Tsahi Levent-Lev: an Independent Consultant for WebRTC and Product Manager at Amdocs Tsahi Levent-Levi, explores the potential of WebRTC from the perspective of a developer: read it here.