Please contact:
David Williams
Global Director of Sales, Research
or via email at:
WebRTC: Get Ready for the Next Telecom Revolution
WebRTC (Real-Time Communications) is, as anyone who points a Web browser to a search engine can tell you, an application programming interface (API) standard drafted by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) that supports browser-to-browser applications for voice calling, video chat and peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing without plugins.

Perhaps the most powerful thing about WebRTC is that, when implemented in a Web browser, voice and video telephony applications can be developed in JavaScript. JavaScript is a programming language understood by millions of developers; voice and video networking protocols are not. Hence WebRTC has the potential to enable armies of developers to create their own real-time communications apps in a way that has not been possible until now.

Another key advantage of WebRTC over existing voice over IP (VoIP) technology is that it can be contextualized. If this contextual information can reduce the time spent on the phone by a few tens of seconds, it will not only lead to a better customer experience, but it can also cut down on call center staffing requirements. However, not all Web browsers support WebRTC. Google's Chrome is perhaps the most WebRTC-compliant browser in its various versions (PC, Android). Mozilla's Firefox and Opera are nearly there. But Microsoft's Internet Explorer and Apple's Safari do not support WebRTC.

WebRTC is both an opportunity and a threat for telcos. The threat is clear: consumers and enterprises could increasingly turn to the Web for their voice and video communications, dispensing with conventional telecom services. However, PSTN bypass is not a new threat to carriers, and in many ways WebRTC is more of a threat to over-the-top (OTT) players like Skype than it is to telcos.

While voice and video over IP applications are already widely used, today they are enabled via dedicated software programs or clumsy browser plug-ins. These look set to be replaced by WebRTC in a similar way to how Web mail has supplanted dedicated email client software for the vast majority of consumers and a growing proportion of corporates. In its purest form, WebRTC involves the P2P communication between two browsers without the need for signaling or media servers. All the media processing is done locally on the PC or phone.

WebRTC: Get Ready for the Next Telecom Revolution provides a current view of the developing WebRTC environment, focusing on the nascent standard's likely impact on telecom operators. It examines the types of applications that are likely to develop using WebRTC technology, along with examples of some early-stage apps now available. The report identifies and analyzes WebRTC's primary threats and opportunities for telecom carriers, explains the key technology underpinnings of WebRTC, and details how those underpinnings differ from previous attempts to establish IP-based real-time communications, such as IMS. The report also presents an early-draft taxonomy of WebRTC vendors and profiles 11 leading suppliers in the market.
Sample research data from the report is shown in the excerpts below:
Table of Contents (hri0614_toc.pdf)
Consumers are likely to adopt WebRTC services if they are free and easy to use. Monetization will depend on advertising and upselling premium services. However, the bigger dollar opportunity for developers is perhaps in the enterprise space. The following excerpt helps to frame the opportunity for WebRTC. Ultimately it is all about enterprises and consumers communicating with one another.
[click on the image above for the full excerpt]
Companies analyzed in this report include: Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU); Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC); Genband Inc.; Mavenir Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: MVNR); OpenCloud Ltd.; Oracle Corp. (NYSE: ORCL); Dialogic Inc. (OTC US: DLGC); Radisys Corp. (Nasdaq: RSYS); BroadSoft Inc. (Nasdaq: BSFT); CafeX Communications Inc.; and TokBox Inc.
Total pages: 25
To view reports you will need Adobe's Acrobat Reader. If you do not have it, it can be obtained for free at the Adobe web site.