WebRTC Signaling Server - What Is It?

December 26, 2022 - Reading time: 5 minutes

From a client perspective, online video communication is insanely simple today. You do not even need to install anything on your computer to call another person via the Internet. Modern video API solutions often require an Internet connection only to work, which is truly convenient. However, some work must be done behind the scenes to offer software users such an opportunity. Thanks to WebRTC signaling servers, people can engage in peer-to-peer communication right in the browser using video, audio, and data sharing. Whenever you are using a web interface to communicate with someone in real time, this connection happens via WebRTC signaling servers.

What Does WebRTC Mean?

Before jumping into the servers used in WebRTC, it is necessary to understand what it is in itself. This abbreviation means Web Real-Time Communication, which is pretty self-explanatory. WebRTC is a project developed by Google and used by other companies as well, such as Microsoft, Apple, Mozilla, Opera, etc. This project enables Internet browsers and portable gadgets to connect users over the Internet for real-time communication. As such communication happens through the application programming interfaces, there is no need to download and install any programs. From the customer's point of view, this technology really seems like using a certain online platform like Digital Samba for instant video calls without additional installations. But for API developers, it is necessary to incorporate a variety of servers that enable such a quick and effortless connection.

What Are Signaling Servers?

Signaling servers used in WebRTC are special servers responsible for connecting two devices over the Internet. They are not made for transferring media and data but for managing the connection itself. This includes finding two devices and bringing them together, maintaining this connection, and renewing it if it was lost. Such servers are needed for protecting the information transmitted via this connection while not necessarily interpreting these data. The main objective of a signaling server is to essentially transmit the signal and connect the two endpoints.

The Benefits of WebRTC Technology

WebRTC has changed the whole virtual communication industry dramatically thanks to its numerous advantages. Here are some of the key benefits of using online video API for instant communication:

  • Free of charge – this Google technology is open-source, and everybody can benefit from it without paying any money. The main goal of WebRTC is to ensure convenient communication and compatibility with all browsers.
  • Cross-platform compatibility – one of the biggest perks of this technology is that users are not dependent on a certain platform or device. If API or a gadget supports WebRTC, you should be all set. Two people can connect via a video conferencing platform even if one of them is using a PC and the other one is on their mobile phone.
  • Safe communication – various encryption protocols are incorporated to secure both video and audio transmission. This is especially important when you are using video calls via open Wi-Fi spots.
  • Great quality of sound and video – top-quality video and audio codecs are used in WebRTC to provide peak quality during calls. Similar codecs are used by Skype and other software.
  • Quick app development – when creating applications for video and audio communication, the process becomes much quicker and easier thanks to WebRTC technology. As it is open-source, there is no need to study it thoroughly, and standard API solutions can be used. In addition, video and audio codecs required for development are royalty-free.

Because of the benefits offered by WebRTC, this technology has gained popularity and continues to improve to keep up with the demands of the industry.

Video Conferencing Using WebRTC

For the longest time, people had to download special software and install it on their devices to be able to communicate via the Internet. In addition, both users needed to have the same program installed. With WebRTC, a lot of these issues are eliminated. Not only can you use any platform to call each other online, but no apps need to be installed. Video conferencing platforms are useful in many ways, and here are some of their perks:

  • Useful solution for work – video communication is now widely used in a corporate environment. Instead of running around the building to talk to other employees and visit a meeting, it is now possible to arrange a video call in a matter of seconds. Not to mention the convenience of working from home if you had to stay because of weather conditions, your health, etc.
  • Cost-efficient services – many video call platforms offer gratis services or affordable plans for regular calls if you are working in a company or use video conferencing for education.
  • Great security – to protect personal data and any information transmitted via video calls, E2EE encryption methods are utilized. Digital Samba is a highly reliable software as it is also GDPR-compliant for added security.
  • Scalability – with WebRTC, you can arrange one-on-one calls without any issues. However, video conferencing solutions are very scalable, and with additional servers and specific technologies, you can easily host streams with many participants and viewers. It is a great solution for businesses and schools.
  • Video recordings – you can not only talk to other video API users over the web but also record your calls for later. This includes both voice and video. The recorded clips can be also stored online in a cloud, thus freeing space on your device. Such solutions are especially convenient for recording business meetings and educational videos that can last hours.

Using the right servers for facilitating video communication over the Internet is the key to convenient and swift services.

by E.Brown