Pure WebRTC peer2peer video chat vs Vonage-Tokbox/Amazon Chime/Twilio

During Coronatime everything went online. If you have been organizing big offline events, now you have to do the same thing online. A year before you simply went to the doctor’s office, now you think twice and use the Telemedicine calling application to consult the doctor first. Education apps flourish online as well.

It’s no surprise that video streaming providers like Vonage, Amazon Chime, Twilio are booming. They bill audio/video streaming per minute. And if your business has many customers – you are in $$$ trouble.

But sometimes it’s possible to overcome extra expenses. And in this blog post, I will let you know what to do if you need to manage many 1 to 1 video calls or video conferencing in small groups.

Quick theory about how most of the video conference system works. We have a server in the middle and every participant connects to the server. It works great, and there is no alternative when you have many users in a room.


But, when you have a limited amount of participants in a room or 1 to 1 video call, you can use a different approach.


See, there is no server, all participants are connected to each other. How cool is that! 

As always there are pros and cons of such a system, it’s called “Mesh” by the way.

Pros: You don’t need media streaming servers.

Cons: You can’t hold many users in such a room. It depends on the video quality and device power, so let’s say 6-8 users is a maximum.

Ok, so we have this Mesh approach and it works well for Telemedicine, for Education applications in small groups.

Let’s calculate and compare the usage costs for both types of systems.

 

Imagine we have a Telemedicine application, and you have mostly 1 to 1 call, sometimes up to 4 participants in the room.

Let’s assume the system has 1000 video calls per day. Every call duration is 15 min on average. 

Vonage/Tokbox costs:

One video call has 2 video participants streams involved. Meaning 1 call on average is 2x15min = 30 min of video streams. Then 30 min x 1000 calls = 30,000 minutes of video streaming.

Vonage has a pricing of $0.0045 per minute of the video stream.

$0.0045 x 30,000 minutes = $135 per day, or $135 x 30 days = $4050 per month

WebRTC Mesh System costs:

For such a system, you need to use a server only to establish a call and connect users directly. In some rare situations, you need to use a relay TURN server for sending traffic.

The server to establish calls will cost you roughly $100/month.

The relay TURN server will add roughly $100/month on top. In total, we have $200 per month.

Wow, it is $4k vs $0.2K! Where is a catch?

Well, you definitely need to consider installing such a “Mesh” system, and by coincidence, we have developed it! And we even sell it with source code and can install it on your premises.

Message me to get the Demo and Quote: sz@trembit.com 

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