back to article Google open sources $68.2m realtime comm platform

Google has open sourced a framework for realtime video and audio inside the browser. Known as WebRTC, the framework is based on technology the company acquired with its $68.2 million purchase of Global IP Solutions (GIPS) last year. "We’d like to make the browser the home for innovation in real time communications," Google …


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  1. Giles Jones Gold badge


    It must suck to be Skype right now :)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Skype ?

      It must suck to be Microsoft now - that's that corrected.

      1. Anonymous Coward


        and it's not a coincidence, methinks

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Letters are contained within the required digital title.

    Being opensource, this could easily be integrated into a system like asterisk. This could become a Skype alternative that does not even need to be installed.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Have to love these valuations

    $68.2 million for ~ 37Mb of actual useful code (excluding their testing code)

    That's almost $2 PER BYTE, including white spaces.

    Good money if you can make it.

    1. Sampler

      And what does $8.5bn equate to in Skype code?

      Bet you it's a little north of $2/b

      Tell you what it's really worth now...

      Just goes to show how well one business is run to how poorly another is run if both can purchase pretty much the same thing for vastly different sums.

      (speaking technically, I know MS are trying to buy a userbase two which counts for a lot more but there's a totally other argument to why that's going to fail)

      1. Anonymous Coward


        Skype has established services, servers and a vast userbase.

        What does this one have? It's just code, not sure it even has any patents, most stuff they use has expired already or is royalty free (like ilbc)

    2. Alastair 7

      Spoken like a true consultant

      Clearly the valuation has nothing to do with the number of lines of code. The usefulness of a program has nothing to do with it's size.

      It has everything to do with the ability and uniqueness of the product.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Not at all @Alastair7

        What uniqueness? There's plenty of A/V conferencing software already out on the net, using SIP for example - or even older stuff like vic/vat for MBONE.

        The only thing this has is the actual code, oh and Google's name label if that floats your boat. It's only uniqueness is Google slapping the "Web" word in front of it, which is just marketing bullshit since it doesn't work over HTTP.

        Nothing else, G.711 and G.722 audio codec patents have both expired already. There's VP8, but that's free now as well.

        This is not even even being used anywhere yet, who knows if it works at all.

        $100,000 would be more like it and being generous. $68 million is just a ridiculous figure to catch the headlines.

        1. coppice

          @Anonymous Coward

          If you bothered looking you would see that they haven't opened up G.722. They actually use *my* G.722 code. What they have opened up and given patent grants on is iSAC and a bunch of well proven audio enhancement and echo cancellation stuff they got from GIPS. G.722 and G.711 are just part of the total bundle.

          This is great news. Nobody has really produced open source versions of these functions that are world class. The speex library has some of the elements, but they are far from polished, and have specific problems. This could save a lot of work.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward


            Yes did notice how much of the code is taken from other projects, never was it mentioned that they had opened G.722.

            What's the advantage of iSAC vs G.722 or indeed G.729.1, both of which already had decent open source implementations? Is there any big improvement? Doesn't seem so.

            Plenty of code out there for audio enhancement and echo cancellation, for example the Oslec package.

            Maybe Google's implementation slightly better and I'm not saying it's not good news, but not $68 million good news that's for sure. That valuation is beyond ridiculous.

            Also this code isn't actually that well polished either.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward


            Cool! So... in the interest of full disclosure are you planning to join Google's payroll anytime soon?

  4. NoneSuch Silver badge

    Breaking News

    Microsoft is buying Nokia's phone business. After their deal lowered Nokia's stock by 2/3 of its value, they are now buying the phone business for a few billion. Looks like Elop will be starting in Seattle a lot earlier then people thought.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It'll be interesting to see what Microsoft's response is.

    If it's built into Chrome then if you need the chat features you'll install Chrome and if you've got Chrome, you're likely to use it for web browsing.

    So this could increase the market share of Chrome at the expense of Internet Explorer so what do you do if you're Microsoft?

    1. Rob Beard
      Thumb Up


      I know a load of people who installed Chrome just to play Angry Birds, saying that I think you're right.


  6. Anonymous Coward

    bye bye


  7. Levente Szileszky

    Whoah, Gates really needs to STFU and Ballmer...

    ...well, Ballmer really needs to go, period.

  8. David 164

    Nice move by Google

    Nice move by Google, got to wonder when Google will transferring its own video communication tools over tot this framework.

  9. kevinanchi


    just imagine google 10 years from now.............

  10. Jim Benn

    Wishful thinking (sort of).

    Who thinks we should send the street address of the MPEG-LA group to Ted Kaczynski ??

  11. Jim Benn

    Wishful thinking (sort of).

    And NO, for Christ's Sake, I am NOT advocating ANYTHING. It would be better for the MPEG-LA group to run up against a company like Google, who would BURY them in Lawyer fees.

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