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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Obihai and WebRTC: The Future is Calling

WebRTC: The Next Big Thing in Cloud Communications?

More and more, those who follow voice and video communications are hearing the term “WebRTC” in reference to how we will make calls using Internet-connected computers, tablets, smart phones and associated apps. WebRTC gets mentioned as VoIP technologists and leading-edge Cloud Communications companies bring focus to the best way forward for products, applications and over-arching collaboration solutions to meet the needs of their users. If you are not intimately involved with VoIP hardware, software or the network apps that allow real-time communication using the Internet, you might be asking yourself, “What exactly is WebRTC and why would I want it?”

In a nutshell, WebRTC is a new feature to be incorporated in virtually all web browsers. It will also be leveraged in stand-alone apps where one aspect of the application is a real-time voice or video conversation using the Internet (a.k.a. VoIP). The feature is built on-top of another newish web technology called HTML5.  Using HTML5 and WebRTC, applications may access available audio and video capabilities resident on the local host device without the need to install any sort of plug-in or special application. In other words, you may simply, launch the web application from a link or bookmark on your Internet connected device, and instantly make a call to your friend or a business. With WebRTC, you no longer need to install a platform dependent soft-phone application, and then deal with a complex configuration in order to make a simple call.

With the support from Google and Mozilla (Firefox), WebRTC is currently available in Chrome and Firefox. Other major (and minor) browser and web application players already do or are also expected to soon support WebRTC. While WebRTC was conceived as a solution for browser to browser calls, a more versatile application is to let the browser make calls through a VoIP service with connectivity to any phone number in the world. Some service providers have built or have plans to build WebRTC-based applications to be used in conjunction with their services.

What Has Obihai Technology Been Doing with WebRTC?

Engineers at Obihai have been working to enhance the real-time communication software, i.e.  “stack” used on OBi VoIP products to make them compatible with the WebRTC standards. There are many possible applications and products that will come-about as a result of this work.

Resource Links:
Google Inc. sponsored WebRTC site
WebRTC on Wikipedia
Getting Started with WebRTC (HTML5 Rocks)