WebRTC Stories February 4, 2016

Improved Hangouts is one of the most common requests from Android users. According to a rumor late last year, Google is working on making it a better chat client by removing SMS capabilities. It now appears that as a part of that Hangouts will use a peer-to-peer connection when possible.

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WebRTC Stories August 28, 2013

Google rolling out 720p HD Google+ Hangouts in the coming weeks

According to a new report from GigaOm, Google is in the process of rolling out an update to higher quality 720p HD video for Google+ Hangouts and Google’s Vic Gundotra later confirmed the roll out will continue over the coming weeks. The report explains that the move is part of Google’s transition to new plug-in free standards including the switch from the H.264 video codec to VP8:

One of the key advantages of VP8 is that it will enable Hangouts in HD, something that Chew said simply wasn’t possible with H.264, because handling HD streams from 10 participants would have required too much processing power. The new video format also makes it possible for Google to serve up better-looking streams at low bit rates, which is especially important when it comes to mobile video chats.

Google’s Vice President of Engineering Chee Chew told GigaOm that the company plans to move Hangouts to the open standard WebRTC standard, which it just implemented support for in Chrome, to provide a plug-in free experience for users and other improvements:

“We will eventually move over to WebRTC,” said Chew, but this process may take several more months. However, eventually, WebRTC could actually provide an even more immersive video chat experience, explained Chew. That’s because when the video becomes a native HTML element, it will be even easier to add overlays and other, more subtle improvements.

More details available in the full report here.

WebRTC Stories August 21, 2013

Chrome for Android update w/ WebRTC, WebAudio, & improved scrolling now available

We noted yesterday that the release of Chrome 29 on Windows, Mac, and Linux would be followed by an update to the Chrome app for Android that brings support for the WebRTC standard and scrolling improvements. Google has just released the update on Google Play and also noted that it includes support for the WebAudio API allowing developers to “process and synthesize audio” in web apps. WebRTC support, as we’ve noted previously, is typically used by developers to implement voice calling, video chatting, and peer-to-peer file sharing in their web apps without the ned of a plugin. Google also says the update includes enhancements to “scrolling responsiveness and visual indication when reaching the end of a page.”

The updated Chrome for Android app also brings a new UI for the color picker in web forms and improved startup performance.

WebRTC Stories August 20, 2013

Google announced today on its Chrome Blog that it is beginning to roll out smarter omnibox suggestions for Chrome users that it says will provide “more timely and contextually relevant suggestions.” The feature has been available for a while in beta and Google noted the improved suggestions are based on websites users recently visited. The new features come alongside the release of the Chrome 29 stable release for Windows, Mac, and Linux, which also brings support for new apps and extensions APIs.

Another new feature coming in Chrome 29 is the ability to reset Chrome back to its original state, disabling all added extensions, through an easy to access option located in Settings: expand full story

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