by Jason Snell
Safari to gain real-time communication features?
On January 19, Apple checked WebRTC support into the WebKit open-source project upon which Safari is based. This is kind of a big deal because it suggests that WebRTC will eventually make its way into Safari.
WebRTC is a collection of plugins and APIs that enables audio and video communication within a web browser without any third-party plugins. It’s currently functional on Chrome and Firefox. It’s literally the only reason I use Chrome—for using Roll20 and Google Hangouts to play Dungeons & Dragons, and for using the Cast podcasting-recording app to record TV Talk Machine.
But I’m not just excited because it means I may be able to stay in Safari on my Mac to use those apps down the road. I’m excited because on iOS, Safari/WebKit is the only game in town. And these check-ins suggest that WebRTC might be coming to iOS in the future. That would be a game-changer for podcasting, because it would let browser-based apps like Cast and Zencastr function on iOS. At that point, recording podcasts on iOS would be possible without any real compromises.
A WebKit check-in doesn’t mean it’s going to happen tomorrow, but it’s possible that we’ll see it this year. As a podcaster who prefers to travel with an iOS device, I’m excited!
[via Feross Aboukhadijeh, retweeted into my timeline by Daniel Appelquist.]