A closely followed Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) meeting in Vancouver last week took an anticlimactic and mysterious turn. Committee members failed to reach a consensus on an important component of the new web-based communications standards called WebRTC.
RTC stands for Real Time Communication. The stakes are high because several large technology vendors with large communications businesses went into the meeting jostling for position of their respective video streaming technologies.
Cisco Systems and Google, in particular, faced off on their competing standards for the video codec —the underlying code for streaming video in real time — in WebRTC. Sources familiar with the proceedings reported IETF members needed more time to work out the economic impact the various video codec selections would have on developers.
We’re disappointed that the IETF failed to reach consensus. We plan on fully continuing our initiatives in making H.264 available and working with Mozilla in enabling H.264 support in Firefox. In parallel, we will continue to participate in the IETF processes in the hopes that consensus can be reached in the near future."
The delay will stymie technologists and developers who want to push forward with web-based communications apps. WebRTC is already behind where many developers thought it would originally be. It was expected to be finalized by the end of 2013.
About the Author
R. Scott Raynovich is an independent author, technology analyst and media consultant. He publishes a blog, The Rayno Report.
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