WebRTC ChatterBox sample

Microsoft has announced Microsoft Edge now supports WebRTC 1.0 APIs for Universal Windows Platform (UWP) apps. The company has open sourced the documentation on GitHub. Microsoft Edge also supports WebRTC now, available for developers with Insider Preview builds on Desktop devices.

WebRTC is a Real-Time Communications platform created by Google. It is free and open source, allowing developers to place RTC capabilities into their browser and mobile apps. This is achieved through simple APIs.

Microsoft says it has seen WebRTC growth over the last half decade. The APIs have been particularly popular for creating native video chat apps.

With support for WebRTC on Microsoft Edge, developers can build apps in HTML/JS for browsers through the Web App Template through Edge. Microsoft says this is sometimes not enough. In many cases, developers want to create WebRTC apps for other devices, such as Xbox, HoloLens, or Windows Phone.

To deal with these and other cases, Microsoft has ported WebRTC 1.0 for UWP. Available as an open source project, it is 100 percent compatible with Google’s source. The company says this allows UWP scenarios to work across platform to Chrome on the Desktop.

ORTC APIs

Microsoft says WebRTC support now sits alongside its longstanding support of the ORTC APIs. This is a further development of WebRTC and gives developers more tools to manage their media and data. The APIs use standard JSON format rather than SDP. Microsoft points out this is a unique way to describe peer capabilities.

“ORTC was designed with WebRTC interoperability in mind and all media is wire-compatible with WebRTC,” the company says in a blog post. “ORTC also includes an adapter that converts SDP to JSON and exposes APIs that match WebRTC. Those two considerations make it possible for developers to migrate from WebRTC to ORTC at their own pace and enable video calls between WebRTC and ORTC clients. ORTC for UWP is available both as an Open Source project on GitHub as well as a NuGet package.”

Because of combined support of UWP and Edge for WebRTC 1.0 and ORTC, all Windows 10 platforms support RTC and dev’s can choose between APIs.