Is WebRTC an opportunity to displace Skype or just overwhelm it?
Chris Koehncke wrote a nice post recently – about Skype’s threat from Google’s WebRTC. It is a good post I suggest you read.
There was one thing that bugged me in it – the way Chris sees it, displacement can come from a single place and that place is Google:
So I started thinking, if there was some WebRTC application that already had a bizllion users, […] maybe some other time worn critical communications elements with the added benefits of a WebRTC capability- now that could likely challenge Skype pretty quickly.
Chris thinks that someone can be Gmail. I think it can be Facebook (more on that next week).
But why should it be a single application with bizllion users? I am more into death by a thousand cuts. These thousand cuts? They are all services – web based services – all vying to can a piece of the communication happening today on Skype.
I did most of my intro calls with companies for the WebRTC interviews over Skype, but recently, the companies I interview prefer them to take place on their own service – using WebRTC.
I assume that Skype “buttons” on websites (can you honestly say you’ve seen such a button?) will be replaced by WebRTC ones in the coming years.
LinkedIn can add the ability to communicate on their site, and there goes some of the interactions from Skype.
Online calendars can do the same, and then scheduled meetings are thrown out the window.
WebRTC doesn’t necessarily need the initial presence/chat mode that Skype offers. It can be added – a lot of WebRTC vendor have done it already – others haven’t – it all depends on the use case.
I’d argue that a lot of interactions that end on Skype start elsewhere – so what happens when that “elsewhere” places decide to add WebRTC?
Did I mention Facebook?
It will be a thousand cuts – big and small ones.