In this new era of communications, customers and users want deeper, more interactive and collaborative experiences, as well as reliable, high-quality voice and video, says Agora.io chief operating officer Reggie Yativ.
Decades ago the arrival of the internet transformed the way people communicate. They no longer had to rely solely on traditional tools to interact with friends, family, customers and colleagues. Instead, they could send an email or engage in a text chat easily and quickly. Then the advent of VolP changed the way people connected over voice and video by giving them the ability to see and hear each other over the public internet.
But today simply making a connection is not enough. We’re in the era of real-time engagement. Everything we do online – from social media and shopping to gaming and entertainment – is a shared, collaborative experience. The same is true in the enterprise space as more businesses manage teams and customers via advanced online platforms. We’re no longer reliant on one particular platform for real-time communications (RTC) or engagement. Interacting through live voice and video with our family, friends, and co-workers has become part of our everyday routines.
Real-time communications and engagement is a game-changer for all industries
In this new era of communications, customers and users want deeper, more interactive and collaborative experiences, as well as reliable, high-quality voice and video. In fact, video quality is the most important factor for 67% of viewers when watching a livestream broadcast. Providers who can’t deliver real-time experiences that are scalable globally will fall behind as new platforms and services put engagement at the centre of the user experience and rise to the top with innovative new solutions and services.
Of course, real-time engagement is not exclusive to one particular space or vertical – it impacts every industry. For example, retailers have the opportunity to connect with their potential or current customers by building relationships through live streaming and other real-time engagement experiences, such as live fashion shows and how-to tutorials. Gravy, a live shopping party app, is gamifying the online retail experience and giving its users the chance to win the newest beauty and tech products.
By embedding live video and voice, companies like Gravy can increase engagement, improve user stickiness, and create new monetisation opportunities. Moreover, this technology is easier than ever to deploy. What was once an arduous and time-consuming process is now made easier with RTC solutions that require as little as a few lines of code. In other words, anyone can leverage the power of real-time engagement technology.
Looking ahead, it is clear that advancements in machine learning and AI will continue to drive innovation in the RTC space. The emerging technologies are being used to analyse network and media quality metrics, and identify ways to improve communications in less-than-ideal network environments. For example, Agora’s Software-Defined Real-Time Network (SD-RTNTM) is already utilising machine-learning to dynamically manage the routing of voice and video to overcome severe packet-loss incidents and enable uninterrupted, high-quality real-time streaming across the globe – even in the most remote locations and emerging markets.
The rise of AR and VR will also influence the way people communicate and interact with each other. Because these technologies require low-latency and a huge amount of data, RTC technology must continue to evolve to support these mediums.
At IBC Content Everywhere we’ll get a glimpse at some of the latest developments in both consumer and enterprise technologies that are influencing the future of RTC. We’re also excited to see how real-time engagement solutions can further enhance the platforms, applications and businesses featured at the show.
Reggie Yativ is Chief Revenue Officer & COO at Agora.io.
Agora.io will be exhibiting at IBC2019 on Stand 14.H06