Participatory Broadcasting: From Social to Mobile to TV

On AirWhy traditional broadcasters need to adapt, fast

Cable companies and television networks can’t take a trick at the moment. As if digital disruption and cord cutting wasn’t making life tough enough, now comes the rise of participatory broadcasting, the phenomena where viewers collaboratively interact while consuming content, and maybe even participate.

Still coming to grips with on demand and online/mobile viewing, traditional broadcasters must now find a way to provide immersive and engaging viewer experiences to compete with the likes of Facebook Live, Meerkat and Periscope.

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Automated Testing for OpenTok Applications in the Browser

tokbox-inc_markWeb Application Developers are used to being able to write automated tests for their applications and have them run with every PR and before deploying to production to give a level of confidence that things are not broken. OpenTok and real-time applications in general present new challenges when it comes to writing and running automated tests. There are challenges when it comes to getting access to microphones and cameras, testing multiple participants and installing the plugin for Internet Explorer among others.

There has been lots of work around WebRTC testing automation and our friends at rtc.io and &yet have written some great articles on the subject. However these articles don’t cover some of the specifics of testing OpenTok applications for example testing Internet Explorer and installing the OpenTok plugin for Internet Explorer. If you haven’t already I would recommend taking some time to read the articles by the folks at rtc.io and &yet before coming back to this. Also if you’re not familiar with Travis and Selenium WebDriver you might want to check those out too.

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Why WebRTC Will Drive the Next Billion Dollar Company

We all have a fascination with the billion dollar startups. Venture Capitalists try and identify them early, media laud them (or bring them down to earth), and early adopters claim discovery. One new technology innovation has the potential to spark the creation of more billion dollar companies, and markets are starting to pay attention. So what is WebRTC, and why is there so much interest?

It begins with recognizing the emergence of two massive trends. The first is the increasing appetite for ‘on demand’. This is evident in everything from movies to car rides, hotels, relationships to groceries to well, everything. And communications is a core part of this, just look at Meerkat and Twitter’s latest acquisition, Periscope, bringing

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Lip-sync Issues: When a Chrome Update Fixes your Application

This post was co-authored by Gustavo Garcia Bernardo, Philipp Hancke and Charley Robinson.

chrome logo

When WebRTC stuff is really broken, it gets fixed very quickly.

Early in December 2015, shortly after the release of Chrome 47 to the general public, we started to notice a subtle and strange behavior in the Audio/Video of streams during our many daily meetings using WebRTC: the video occasionally wouldn’t stay caught up with the corresponding audio. As with many bugs noticed internally by developers, it took a while for any of us to believe that what we were seeing was a real issue. We call this the inverse of productive dogfooding: rather than assume we are just like our users, we can just as easily decide we are nothing like them.

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Crowdcast: Live Video Events That Don’t Suck

CrowdcastThe evolution of live video has spawned new and engaging ways for brands, organizations and people to connect with their audience. Whether it’s participating in a team meeting held remotely, hosting a virtual conference for hundreds of people all over the world, demo-ing a new product to customers via a webinar, or broadcasting a live stream of an event, there is no question live video is now becoming a standard feature in any business or entrepreneur’s communication toolkit.

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When a Chrome update breaks your WebRTC application

chrome logoEarly December saw the roll-out of Chrome 47. When doing anything with WebRTC, this is always an interesting time. A release brings new features or may break things, like removing the getUserMedia functionality for insecure origins.

Our metrics clearly track such roll outs as seen below:

# of OpenTok calls

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Introducing the Annotation Widget in Beta

Icon_set-Annotation-121115Embedded communications is so powerful because of one very important factor – context. Whether that’s a web page, presentation, LMS, medical scan, (the list goes on), context enhances the conversation. Better still? When collaboration features are layered on top.

Using the OpenTok platform, our aim is to make it super simple for you to add rich collaboration functionality to your apps. Today we’re happy to introduce the Annotation widget for the OpenTok platform in beta –  a pre-built UI component that can be quickly added to your application. The widget adds annotation and frame grab capabilities to the OpenTok web, iOS and Android SDKs and is  completely customizable.

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Introducing Inspector: Your new session diagnostic tool

Inspector by TokBoxToday we’re thrilled to announce the launch of our powerful new session diagnostic tool, Inspector. It provides you with a high-level OpenTok session summary at a stream and user level to help pinpoint errors, failures, and quality issues. Our main goal? To simplify your post-session debugging.

Inspector takes the rich and complex operational data that the TokBox engineering team uses to debug OpenTok sessions, and makes it available to you in an easy to use interface. These vital metrics will enable you to drill down into session-level details around:

  • Bit-rate, latency and packet loss graphs at user and stream level
  • Event Logs (Detailed list and description of all session events)
  • User Logs (Information such as location, SDK, browser and client)
  • Error Logs (Details of all errors encountered, time of error and impacted end-users)

Now your technical support team can quickly glance through session data to determine whether an issue was caused by an end-user error, application error, network problem or the OpenTok platform.

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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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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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