This Wiki page is edited by participants of the Cognitive and Learning Disabilities Accessibility Task Force. It does not necessarily represent consensus and it may have incorrect information or information that is not supported by other Task Force participants, WAI, or W3C. It may also have some very useful information.
Provide on-demand assistance
Video calls with WebRTC
Explanation and whom it helps:
Users with cognitive disability may require assistance when using technology and video communication with another person is highly effective. Examples of video call use include a technical or user support channel, providing personal support as part of a tele-health or tele-care systems, and as apart of a general communications package.
For HTML based solutions WebRTC provides an easily implemented solution with real-time peer to peer Audio, Video and Data exchange between web browsers and devices. In addition to providing audio/video calls and conferencing the data capability may be used to provide chat, file exchange or screen sharing and even collaborative gaming. Communications are secure as they are encrypted. Whilst being peer to peer means no central servers are required, there may be a need for additional cloud-based services for signalling (eg call set-up) or workarounds for firewalls and Network Address Translation (NAT). The advantages of WebRTC to developers include: low cost as no need for dedicated communications hardware, no need for browser plug-ins or other downloads, no phone numbers or other types of accounts requiring sign in. Thus there is a good opportunity for use in communications devices aimed at people with cognitive disabilities.
The WebRTC API is a draft W3C standard and also an open project implemented in the Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox and Opera web browsers giving support on desktop and Android platforms. Whilst Apple have remained silent about WebRTC and Safari, Microsoft are involved in WebRTC but are promoting a variation, ORTC, that includes additional features.
Examples of free, end-user ready services built on WebRTC include Talky based on the open source library simplewebRTC library, Hello included in Mozilla Firefox 34 and appear.in which is funded by Telenor Digital.
FIXME: Need sources