Will WebRTC Change the World of Communications?
- Video Calling
By Jason Unrein, Senior Product Marketing Manager
Probably. But it likely will not come in the form of a WebRTC-based killer app.
WebRTC enables voice and video calling from within a browser without requiring a download or plug-ins. You might ask: ‘Why should I care about that?’ ‘I have <insert the name of your favorite over-the-top calling and/or messaging app here> for that.’
Customers don’t care about enabling technology. They just care if an app will make their life easier. There are already many calling apps that offer voice and video calling for free (and don’t use WebRTC). Therefore, WebRTC needs something more to offer developers (and their customers) than what is already freely available in the market in order for it to gain adoption.
This is the reason I suggested that the transformation of the world of communication by WebRTC likely will not come in the form of a WebRTC-based app—because its most obvious value proposition (web-based voice and video calling) is already offered by so many other applications in the market.
Instead of a killer app that will instantly transform the market, we think WebRTC will change it slowly (but dramatically) over time. Application developers will start to sprinkle communication features in their apps that more traditional (or even alternative) communications can’t support. For example, an Enterprise may lead by adding a ‘click to call’ button on their website—to supplement ‘live chat’—in case their customers would rather talk with a live person. A small business owner may see this, and then decide to do the same on their website, plus add screen-sharing. A consumer-based app may then decide to add a ‘click to call me’ button to make it easier for their end users to reach one another. And so on…
As more WebRTC features are incorporated into more apps, we will see a shift in how people communicate. We will no longer be dependent on a specific application or a specific device to communicate. We won’t have to shift to a specific app or device when we want to share something with someone. Instead, we will be able to reach out how we want (voice, video, or chat), when we want, from whatever website or app we are using.
So will WebRTC change world of communications? I believe it will…although it will likely come in the form of evolutionary change, rather than revolutionary change.