WebRTC: Benefits and Prospective areas of application


The Internet of Things is growing tremendously, resulting in a similar increase in the number of camera-based connected devices responsible for providing and dispatching real-time media data to a PC or smartphone. Browsers have effectively replaced the use of standalone apps in playing audio or video clips.  

Adobe Flash, due for release by major browsers towards the end of 2020, can be used to incorporate an IP camera into a web browser. They are not designed for live streaming in low latency as they are HLS and MPEG Dash. And although WebRTC is a recent technology provision, it still outperforms its opposite number without necessarily guaranteeing the highest amount of device coverage 

What exactly Is WebRTC?

WebRTC, short for Web Real-time Communication, is an open-source technology with which developers provide web browsers, mobile applications, and connected devices with real-time video and audio communication capacities. Owned by Google since 2010, WebRTC is credited to be the brainchild of Global IP Solutions, frontiers in Videoconferencing and VoIP. 

To put it in clear terms, WebRTC enables peer-to-peer interaction between web or mobile browsers without the need for additional plugins, allows access to a device’s camera and microphone, and can stream media files with less than a half-second lag. Various sources acknowledge it as the principal act behind media file transfer technology. It mainly finds application in team collaboration tools along with audio and videoconferencing

Reasons for using WebRTC?

  • Backed by the four leading browsers: Safari, Chrome, Firefox, and Microsoft Edge, it is not limited to a specific network 
  • It functions as a client-side real-time media and can thus transfer data types other than media content.
  • WebRTC is designed with security in mind: Using the (DTLS) and Secure Real-Time Protocol (SRTP) to encrypt the data that’s sent between devices, it will also warn the computer user prior to using Ra: Due to its technology being web-related, It is much simpler to use in writing the client-side of any app.
  • Developers can exploit the real-time communication engine to spread other data types over media content.

How Does WebRTC Operate?

For two users to initiate a communication session, their browsers must first find themselves and then get the license to trade media data in real-time. However, network access translation(NAT) devices or firewalls create a block against the user’s smartphones or laptops, and therein lies the challenge. 

These smartphones and laptops have no static web addresses, as opposed to HTTPS websites whose location can be pinpointed by the Internet. WebRTC uses session Traversal Utilities for NAT (STUN) and Relays around NAT (TURN) servers, alongside signaling/communication protocols to establish a video or phone call with a user away from a home network.

C/C++ was once relied on for real-time communications before the advent of webRTC. This led to the development of collaboration tools and custom conferencing to imply extended project durations and more significant costs. With its JavaScript API at the top of the pile, webRTC will save developers the stress of going too far in search of the tools used in creating applications that interface with browsers.

How Can WebRTC be blended into IoT Solutions?

Aside from the labels and security radar, WebRTC may add value to an RFID-based retail store security system. The solution might integrate an IP camera that closely inspects store activity and feeds real-time video data to a chief security personnel’s PC via a web-based application

When an unpaid item triggers the detectors, the manager can compare the warning signal to video footage and  the shoplifter

While the code package in the domain of WebRTC can be used when compiled to produce a peer connection, devoid of a go-between media server,  WebRTC is a browser-first technology.  This implies that a majority of the IoT services and embedded systems do not support it right away.

 Its GStreamer might provide a fix. It operates using a pipeline-based structure with a flexible source code with which multimedia streaming apps for PCs, networked devices, and servers can be built.

Its feature set gets a native WebRTC API  in addition to it. And it can be operated much easier in comparison to the official WebRTC Native APIs

The functional pipe bends are referred to as elements in GStreamer. They are separated into source elements that generate data and sink components that receive it.

Pads are the connection between these elements and the outside world and can permit developers to link elements with respect to their capabilities.

GStreamer also includes built-in synchronization techniques to ensure that audio and video samples are played in the correct order and at the appropriate time.

WebRTC and GStreamer: areas of application

A lineup of embedded development projects that can make use of GStreamer is outlined below

  • Intelligent surveillance Traditional enterprise and public closed-circuit television (CCTV) systems have existed for a long time, but they are incapable of making independent decisions and demand constant monitoring.
  • IP camera makers can use WebRTC to apply video and audio enhancements to video streams, give entry to camera footage from out of the firewalled network and build bespoke intrusion or accident detecting plugins, bringing camera intelligence further towards the edge
  • Shared Augmented Reality:An onsite, remote expert inserts digital markers, schemes, and text inside a common Augmented Reality space, and field workers can receive real-time directions via a smart headset.
  • eLearning companies, beauty industry professionals, and retail brands aiming to customize consumer experience can all use a similar method.
  • Smart Transportation:Through a mix of in-vehicle cameras, other surveillance equipment, and a high-frequency link with a computer close by (or a fleet dispatcher’s),  improved navigation and driving experience in the automotive sector can be built with the help of WebRTC

The crux of the matter

More WebRTC-based linked goods, particularly industrial systems for offsite equipment maintenance,   Smart Home items, telemedicine apps, intelligent vehicles gathering real-time telemetry data, and wearables, will soon become visible as GStreamer gains popularity from its use by embedded software engineers.

Third-party developers can leverage restful APIs to build WebRTC-based embedded communications, utilizing sensor data from connected devices to generate alert alerts, voice calls, and video sessions.

WebRTC adds a new degree of security to IoT applications and can be utilized as a secure data transmission route. Lastly, the technology is much more than just audio and video streaming. A live video feed may be offered by a Home security system based on WebRTC, which will, in turn, use data from a connected lock to determine which door is open.