WebRTC: The Survey Says...
Interoperability was seen as the biggest challenge, while UC--not surprisingly--was seen as facing the biggest impact.
WebRTC (Web Real Time Communication) is the next wave affecting the enterprise, and Dialogic recently surveyed 169 executives of service providers and application developers to collect their opinions about WebRTC and the effect it will have on their business models. About 87% said that WebRTC would have a significant impact on their product roadmaps. The roadmaps will then influence the enterprise's implementation of WebRTC applications.
Question 1 of the Dialogic survey asked about the disruptive nature of WebRTC. The respondents identified that the browser-based capability was its most disruptive aspect, with 59.5% selecting this choice. It is predicted that more than 1 billion browsers will be supporting WebRTC by the end of 2013. The remaining 40.4% of the opinions were divided among the web services model, open source technology, royalty free video and audio codecs, and finally the backing of Google and Mozilla
Question 2 asked the respondents what they thought would be the market impact on telecom solutions. The survey respondents selected Unified Communications (37.7%) as the single market segment that would experience the greatest impact from WebRTC deployment. Many people looking at WebRTC are predicting that the convergence of audio and video, conferencing, and collaboration capabilities will be very attractive to the enterprise when offered as single package. An interesting question not asked is "Will UC companies like Avaya, Cisco, and Microsoft compete or complement WebRTC with their products?" It is quite possible that Lync plus Skype will be developed as a competitor. Avaya and Cisco will probably embrace WebRTC but add a number of proprietary extensions.
The second choice in terms of most impacted area is video conferencing systems at 29.3%. With all the different and usually incompatible video conferencing products on the market, standardized WebRTC could vastly change this market. The video conferencing vendors will be pushed into either producing WebRTC-compatible products and/or modifying their products to support WebRTC while simultaneously supporting their existing video capabilities. This will set up a competition; which is better and which is cheaper as well as whose products deliver the greatest interoperability.
The final three choices for technologies affected: contact center vendors, who are pursuing WebRTC as an improved way to engage customers; and the IP PBX vendors and audio conference services, which were ranked fourth and fifth in the opinion of the respondents.
Question 3, "Telecom Services: Market Impact" explores which operators and providers would be disrupted by the introduction of WebRTC. Mobile network operators (24.6%), with their huge number of subscribers, would feel the greatest impact, respondents said. The next three operators/providers--multi service operators (cable companies), PSTN service operators, and over-the-top service providers--were about the same at 21%+. The cable companies will probably upgrade their set top boxes to support WebRTC connections.
ISPs were considered the least impacted by WebRTC, mainly because there are so many voice and video services already running over the Internet. WebRTC will be a competitor to the existing services usually provided by third parties, not the ISP itself. At minimum, some of the operators and providers will offer gateway services to connect legacy PSTN and VoIP services to WebRTC users.
Next Page: The Roadmaps