Google Helpouts wasn’t helping

helpouts-gGoogle shuts down plenty of products. Reader, Glass, Talk, Wave. But the closing down of Helpouts gives particularly valuable lessons for those who are building WebRTC based applications and services for the always on ‘find an expert market’, of which there are many.

 While it’s clear that it didn’t get enough  traction and had some monetization issues, the real question is why? In healthcare in particular there is a large and growing world of people for whom video communications, powered by WebRTC, is a critical lifeline (literally).  This is a world that includes housebound cancer-patients, the blind, recovering drug addicts, time-constrained parents and their community of carers, and healthcare practitioners. A recent report cited 89% of healthcare executives that said they expect telemedicine to transform the U.S. healthcare system in the next decade, with the number of patients using telehealth services growing to 7 million in 2018, up from 350,000 in 2013.

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Kicking off TechToks at TokBox

techtoksHere at TokBox, we passionately believe that great products and technology can have a huge impact on the way we live and work. This is especially true when innovative minds from diverse fields and disciplines come together to create them.

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TokBox at Money 2020 Europe

money2020There is no doubt that the financial service industry is going through a period of accelerated change.  In order to keep up with shifting customer behavior and expectations, organizations are turning to a range of new technologies in order to create better experiences for their employees and customers.

Money2020, the world’s largest fintech event, focuses exactly on these innovative and disruptive technologies and how they are being used.  For the first time, TokBox will be exhibiting this year at the European show, taking place in Copenhagen, April 4-7.

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The Royal Bank of Scotland Introduces Video Banking

The Royal Bank of Scotland introduces Video Banking with OpenTokAn innovative approach to banking has enabled Coutts and Co in particular to thrive since its inception more than 300 years ago. The bank of choice for Her Majesty The Queen, Coutts has a commitment to continually bring the latest offerings in banking and support for its 70,000 global customers.

As Coutts operates as part of the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) group, ensuring quality of service to its clients worldwide is a top priority. RBS has a heavy focus on innovation and scouts the globe to identify companies and technologies that may be of service to the bank and its customers needs.

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Using Angular JS with OpenTok

AngularJSBlogIntroduction

We’re big fans of Angular JS at TokBox and we have been using it internally to build applications for quite some time. It’s a fantastic framework for building Single Page Web Applications – since all OpenTok Applications are Single Page Web Apps they work really nicely together. This post is going to be based largely on our experience writing meet.tokbox.com, our own video meeting tool we use internally. The code for meet.tokbox.com can be found at https://github.com/aullman/opentok-meet

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The next generation of Virtual Reality

tokbox-inc_markTokBox is happy to announce our first meetup of 2015.  This month we will be hearing from Josh Carpenter, Virtual Reality Researcher at Mozilla, who will be talking about bringing the open web to Virtual Reality.

The Mozilla VR team believes that the attributes that define the web—interoperability, accessibility, low friction publishing, freedom of navigation, etc—are sorely needed in the emerging modern VR platform, and that the creative potential of the combination of web + VR is unprecedented. In this talk, Josh will focus on a how we might build a new generation of real time collaboration experiences, powered by technologies like WebRTC and WebVR.

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Be My Eyes: Connecting blind people with sighted helpers via video

bemyeyes-logoWhile blind people are able to go about their day just like anyone else, simple everyday tasks can often present challenges. Whether it’s identifying the right public transit route for a commute, checking the expiration date of a carton of milk, or grabbing the right ingredients from the pantry for a meal, it may require assistance.

Founder of non-profit organization Be My Eyes, Hans Jørgen Wiberg, spent three years working for the Danish Blind Society consulting people about how to cope with visual impairment. Wiberg, who is visually impaired himself, found one common thread among all of the people he worked with: while the visually impaired often lean on friends and family to help them overcome everyday hurdles, they at times feel guilty asking for assistance. If they just ‘had a pair of eyes’ once or twice a day, they could accomplish a whole lot more on their own, without leaning on those closest to them.

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Firefox Hello now available for all Firefox users

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Today the latest version of Firefox Hello, powered by OpenTok, has been released. In the coming weeks, Firefox Hello will appear at the top right hand corner (chrome) of your Firefox browser, making it easier than ever to start a call.

Mozilla has produced a new product video that demonstrates Firefox Hello in action (included below). For further information you can read the Mozilla blog post here, as well as copied below.

We hope you enjoy using Hello and look forward to sharing more updates with you soon.

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The Future of WebRTC and Video Banking: 4 Use Cases

The Future of WebRTC and Video Banking: 4 Use CasesWhen people think about banks, the thoughts that spring to mind are images of serious people in conservative suits, large buildings with marble-floored lobbies and rows of teller windows, and well-fed men who look like the guy on a Monopoly box. Indeed, leading banks have always worked hard to maintain stellar reputations for reliability, safety, and longevity. You don’t tend to think about banks being big risk-takers, or experts at trying out new business practices or cutting edge technologies.

But when you look a little closer, the truth is, leading banks are expert at understanding and taking calculated risks, which is essential to their core business of taking deposits from some customers and prudently loaning out those funds to others. They are also remarkably forward-looking in trying out new technologies and business innovations, even if they don’t always portray themselves this way.

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ConceptBoard: The Future of Remote Working Tools

cb_logo_300ppiIn the past decade, technology innovation has been one of the main catalysts for change in the way that we work. Tools like email, instant messaging, Skype, productivity and task management systems are making it easier than ever to stay connected (and focused) outside of the office – whether you’re at home, a coffee shop, or in a plane, train or automobile.

According to one estimate by the American Community Survey, telecommuting has risen 79 percent between 2005 and 2012 and now makes up 2.6 percent of the American work force, or 3.2 million workers. Two+ years later, you can imagine how much this has increased. 

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