Apple and WebRTC
It was in the news a few days ago: Apple is starting to integrate WebRTC in WebKit, the engine that is behind Safari. That is a step that should not underestimate. Why?
Apple is the last major platform vendor that does not integrate WebRTC yet. All others, including Google/Chrome, Microsoft/Edge and Mozilla/Firefox rolled it out already. I never understood what they are waiting for. Was it too challenging from a technology point of view? Hard to believe looking at what Apple delivers. Or patents or codecs? Also hard to believe, considering that the others can offer it, even without charging for it. Was it because they thought that they could make it with facetime? With 20 % of the people using the Apple platform, you would end up 80 % of the time not using facetime. Instead you would use Skype on your iPhone. I don't see how that helps Apple.
The impact of Apple eventually joining the group of WebRTC platform vendors will be pretty big. Now software vendors can seriously start building platforms that include iPhones, Android, PC, tablet and what else is out there.
Consider facebook. If they offer a talk function on their platform using WebRTC, they will turn into a telecom company that has more subscribers than China telecom. Why would you call someone over a telephone number if you can do the same from WebRTC. If you are a telecom provider you need to really seriously think about providing quality data connections when there are 50 RTP packets per second going back and forth. Users will demand this from the market, and they will get it sooner or later.
It is bad news for those who have written "native" applications that runs soft phones on Windows, MacOS, Android or other platforms. There will be no need to install any software on your device any more. And if there is software being installed it will be essentially a sugar-coated HTML5 application, like we have done with the Vodia App.
My feeling is that this was the tipping point. From now on, WebRTC will drive the real time communication business. I don't see any alternative. It will happen, and we want to be part of it!