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WebRTC API

WebRTC (Web Real-Time Communications) is a technology which enables Web applications and sites to capture and optionally stream audio and/or video media, as well as to exchange arbitrary data between browsers without requiring an intermediary. The set of standards that comprises WebRTC makes it possible to share data and perform teleconferencing peer-to-peer, without requiring that the user install plug-ins or any other third-party software.

WebRTC consists of several interrelated APIs and protocols which work together to achieve this. The documentation you'll find here will help you understand the fundamentals of WebRTC, how to set up and use both data and media connections, and more.

Interfaces

RTCPeerConnection
Represents a WebRTC connection between the local computer and a remote peer. It is used to handle efficient streaming of data between the two peers.
RTCSessionDescription
Represents the parameters of a session. Each RTCSessionDescription consists of a description type indicating which part of the offer/answer negotiation process it describes and of the SDP descriptor of the session.
RTCIceCandidate
Represents a candidate internet connectivity establishment (ICE) server for establishing an RTCPeerConnection.
RTCIceTransport
Represents information about an internet connectivity establishment (ICE) transport.
RTCPeerConnectionIceEvent
Represents events that occurs in relation to ICE candidates with the target, usually an RTCPeerConnection. Only one event is of this type: icecandidate.
RTCRtpSender
Manages the encoding and transmission of data through a MediaStreamTrack for an RTCPeerConnection.
RTCRtpReceiver
Manages the reception and decoding of data through a MediaStreamTrack for an RTCPeerConnection.
RTCTrackEvent
Indicates that a new incoming MediaStreamTrack was created and an associated RTCRtpReceiver object was added to the RTCPeerConnection object.
RTCCertificate
Represents a certificate that an RTCPeerConnection uses to authenticate.
RTCDataChannel
Represents a bi-directional data channel between two peers of a connection.
RTCDataChannelEvent
Represents events that occur while attaching a RTCDataChannel to a RTCPeerConnection. The only event sent with this interface is datachannel.
RTCDTMFSender
Manages the encoding and transmission of dual-tone multi-frequency (DTMF) signaling for an RTCPeerConnection.
RTCDTMFToneChangeEvent
Indicates an occurrence of a of dual-tone multi-frequency (DTMF). This event does not bubble (except where otherwise stated) and is not cancelable (except where otherwise stated).
RTCStatsReport
Reports stats for a given MediaStreamTrack asynchronously.
RTCIdentityProviderRegistrar
Registers an  identity provider (idP).
RTCIdentityProvider
Enables a user agent is able to request that an identity assertion be generated or validated.
RTCIdentityAssertion
Represents the identity of the a remote peer of the current connection. If no peer has yet been set and verified this interface returns null. Once set it can't be changed
RTCIdentityEvent
Represents an identity assertion generated by an identity provider (idP). This is usually for an RTCPeerConnection. The only event sent with this type is identityresult.
RTCIdentityErrorEvent
Represents an error associated with the identity provider (idP). This is usually for an RTCPeerConnection. Two events are sent with this type: idpassertionerror and idpvalidationerror.

Guides

WebRTC architecture overview
Beneath the APIs that developers use to create and use WebRTC connections lie a number of network protocols and connectivity standards. This brief overview covers these standards.
Lifetime of a WebRTC session
WebRTC lets you build peer-to-peer communication of arbitrary data, audio, or video—or any combination thereof—into a browser application. In this article, we'll look at the lifetime of a WebRTC session, from establishing the connection all the way through closing the connection when it's no longer needed.
WebRTC API overview
WebRTC consists of several interrelated APIs and protocols which work together to support the exchange of data and media between two or more peers. This article provides a brief overview of each of these APIs and what purpose it serves.
WebRTC basics
This article takes you through the creation of a cross-browser RTC App. By the end of it, you should have working peer-to-peer data channel and media channel.
WebRTC protocols
This article introduces the protocols on top of which the WebRTC API is built.
Using WebRTC data channels
This guide covers how you can use a peer connection and an associated RTCDataChannel to exchange arbitrary data between two peers.
WebRTC connectivity
This article describes how the various WebRTC-related protocols interact with one another in order to create a connection and transfer data and/or media among peers.

Tutorials

Improving compatibility using WebRTC adapter.js
The WebRTC organization provides on GitHub the WebRTC adapter to work around compatibility issues in different browsers' WebRTC implementations. The adapter is a JavaScript shim which lets your code to be written to the specification so that it will "just work" in all browsers with WebRTC support.
Taking still photos with WebRTC
This article shows how to use WebRTC to access the camera on a computer or mobile phone with WebRTC support and take a photo with it.
A simple RTCDataChannel sample
The RTCDataChannel interface is a feature which lets you open a channel between two peers over which you may send and receive arbitrary data. The API is intentionally similar to the WebSocket API, so that the same programming model can be used for each.
Signaling and two-way video calling
Sample, we take the web socket chat system we've created in another example and add the ability to make video calls. The chat server is augmented to handle the WebRTC signaling.

Resources

Protocols

WebRTC-proper protocols

Specifications

Specification Status Comment
WebRTC 1.0: Real-time Communication Between Browser Working Draft The initial definition of the API of WebRTC.
Media Capture and Streams Editor's Draft The initial definition of the object conveying the stream of media content.
Media Capture from DOM Elements Editor's Draft The initial definition on how to obtain stream of content from DOM Elements

In additions to these specifications defining the API needed to use WebRTC, there are several protocols, listed under resources.

Document Tags and Contributors

 Contributors to this page: Cocoa, Sheppy, jpmedley, teoli
 Last updated by: Cocoa,