WebRTC is used for mass user services, how does this impact me?
Statistics for usage of web services are common. Facebook by the number, twitter by the numbers, skype by the numbers…
Less popular and harder to accurately collect are statistics for web technologies.
WP engine, a hosting service that focuses on WordPress only (this website is hosted there) came out with WordPress live statistics, numbers that demonstrate the strength of WordPress as the engine behind a good part of the web.
I don’t know how they are collecting this data and what they calculate into it. Since WordPress is open source (GPL) where do they draw the line deciding what to include in this count and what not to include? If a website is built on a fork of WordPress, is it still considered as a WordPress based website?
A similar but more complex question arises for WebRTC. WebRTC is a lower level technology than WordPress. WordPress is more of a complete solution than WebRTC. WebRTC has a more permissive license (BSD for both the Google and Ericsson implementations) and there are good reasons to reuse sub-components of it for different purposes.
Dean Bubley from Disruptive Analysis predicts over 2bn WebRTC users by 2019 but he also talks about the complexity of quantifying WebRTC usage.
If a company like Vonage or Amazon takes the WebRTC implementation, breaks it to pieces and takes only some parts of it, are these considered WebRTC base services we should count?
How do we count a peer assisted CDN service that makes use of the data channel, by the minute? By users that received data from another peer?
To my view, these numbers are nice to brag about but they are not the important point. The important worth bragging point is where WebRTC can be found today. Those who are not following closely usage of WebRTC might be surprised to learn the following impressive points:
- Hangout of Google is using WebRTC
- Snapchat is using WebRTC for its voice chat, they acquired AddLive for that
- Vonage took parts of WebRTC, added codecs and some logic and built their mobile applications with it
- Amazon apparently used the video parts of WebRTC for their Mayday button
- What will WhatsApp/Facebook use for their voice or voice calling service? It will probably be WebRTC
- What does Microsoft use in Skype for Web and new the Lync client? They already announced adoption of WebRTC with ORTC
- Other OTTs are playing with WebRTC, yet to be seen what will be the result of that
- Tier 1 service providers are invested in WebRTC (Telefonica, AT&T…)
- Tier 1 banks are building new services based on WebRTC
- The largest OTT content providers are investing in WebRTC to reduce their OPEX
- Well know team collaboration companies make their move into WebRTC – Slack acquires Screenhero
This is impressing information. It shows maturity of the technology.
The harder question is how does it impact you.
How does this impact me?
Since most of those using WebRTC in mass deployment are islands and WebRTC is behind the scenes does it matter at all?
Usage of WebRTC by masses of users has impact on all of us in 2 ways:
From technology standpoint, the more WebRTC is used, even as technology components torn from it, it increases the maturity of the implementation. It is used in more use cases, problems are found and fixed.
From compatibility and interoperability standpoint, being used in browser based implementations increases the pressure on browser vendors to support WebRTC and adhere to the standards.
Now to those WordPress statistics and some numbers of services around the Web provided by WP engine.
Make sure to toggle between Right Now, After 1 day and After 1 month.