Chris Kranky

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The pressure mounting on Apple & Microsoft

Chris KoehnckeChris Koehncke

fuzzyThis isn’t Google’s first rodeo at tangling with either Apple or Microsoft. You have to admire the way Google is slowly tightening the vise grips on these two seemingly dorky competitors (yes I said Apple is dorky). Google has deftly been working to slowly distance themselves from WebRTC. They no longer are in the center of the discussion. It’s rare for you to even hear them commenting. Ironically, at this 3rd WebRTC Expo, Google isn’t even a sponsor.

WebRTC is quickly become an industry discussion. It has a life of it’s own. A heartbeat. The GSMA is busily talking about WebRTC being some way to make IMS finally look good. The IETF is arguing about SDP offer/answer. W3C politics already at work. ATIS trying to make themselves relevant again with Orca. Javascript libraries appearing daily on github.  Everything is powering along quite nicely thank you very much.

Indeed, in the grand scheme of things, WebRTC is but a small planet in a new solar system being constructed out of various new components of HTML 5 resulting in an entirely new type of application space. The introduction of the little icon, “Chrome App Launcher” is another signal in this changing world. Google is not trying to replace the operating system, but rather has built an entire skyscraper around it. The shadow quickly falling on Microsoft.

In another sign that Google is predicting the irrelevancy of Microsoft is the end of year termination of Chrome Frame. A plug-in for Microsoft Internet Explorers that allow many of the Chrome HTML 5 technologies (including WebRTC) to run inside Explorer.

The fact that WebRTC and numerous HTML 5 Chrome specific enhancements are becoming defacto standards suits Google just fine as they slip away quietly. Their work here is done.  The pressure now mounts on both Microsoft and Apple. How can they not like something that is free, open and being widely accepted.  Do they give in, admit defeat and join the party? Attempt to start their own party with rail vodka?  Or is there another scheme that might work. Perhaps Google has another chapter in this story yet to come.