WebRTC - A Revolution in Real-Time Communication
WebRTC is a new browser-based communication tool that relies on free, open-source technology.
A Closer Look
Reasons for Using WebRTC
Now you must be thinking that with so many different communication technologies available today, why should we choose this particular technology for application-based video chat communication? Well, here are a few reasons:
- This framework uses all open and free Internet technologies, like HTML, TCP/IP protocol, and Hypertext Transfer Protocol. It is a full package that turns the browser into a communication machine in the cheapest manner possible.
- It supports different kinds of proxies, and has an abstract key like NAT. It also uses the latest firewall technology via ICE, TURN, STUN and RTP-over-TCP.
- It is integrated with the best engines for processing voice and video quality, which are deployed on many different end points.
- The unique signalling process of this framework is due to a special and unique signalling machine. This machine is a state machine, which maps directly to a peer-to-peer connection. It builds the strength of the browser. The developer can choose any protocol, depending upon the situation.
There are few codecs that are very important for this technology:
- Opus Audio Codec: This is a royalty-free codec. It supports both constant as well as variable types of bit rate encoding techniques. It also supports sampling rates from 8 kHz to 48 kHz.
- iSAC Audio Codec: This is an adaptive and robust technique that is used in many different kinds applications using voice over IP and audio streaming features.
- iLBC Audio Codec: This is also an audio codec used in different platforms. It uses a narrowband technique and the latest version of this codec has a profile draft feature in it.
- VP8: This is a very efficient video codec used by different kinds of platforms. It uses a unique compression technique, which is known to reduce the size but the not the quality of the images. It’s developed by On2 technologies, but since On2 is a part of Google, this framework uses the codec without any cost.
Components of the WebRTC Package
There are many different components that comprise the total WebRTC package. The major components are given below with explanations:
- Audio: This framework provides a complete set of capabilities to provide flawless sound in the communication process. It has many different codecs and audio components, which increase the rich experience of the sound. It also has a software-based functionality, which reduces any echo, using acoustic echo cancellation techniques. This framework also works on suppression of noise and reduces it, automatic gain control and controls the hardware access in different types of platforms.
- Video: It uses VP8 for its video as it is the latest video codec to be introduced. Using this codec for the video component, this framework can fix all kinds of packet loss. Additionally, the framework can clean up all types of blurry, unfocused and noisy images and also has the capability of capturing and performing playback in many different types of platforms.
- Network: As previously mentioned, this framework works on a secure peer-to-peer connection using different technology. This also has a dynamic jitter buffer and error-correcting techniques which work on any unreliable network and stabilize it. These techniques together help the framework to utilize every different kind of platform with the same quality and also conceal the loss of packets in the network to increase the quality of video and audio.
The components are always subject to change, as this framework is based on an API which is still going through a development period. It can only be stabilized when a few browser vendors begin to implement it as a test. After the API retains stability, then there will be different kinds of backend tasks, like increasing compatibility and efficiency. After this, the developers are also thinking of a layer structure for improving the presentation, features and quality. (For another way to communicate via the Internet, see Remember IRC? It's Still Around - And It's Still Worth Using.)
The WebRTC framework is free of cost and highly efficient. It uses different kinds of codecs and a robust technology to make real-time communication smooth, simple and cheap. In the days ahead it is sure to have a big impact in the world of real-time communication.