The web is the Open Platform for Mobile

Mobile operators and network equipment providers have long been critical actors in the deployment of web technologies to the public at large.

The convergence of Web and mobile industries is now fully in march, driven by the convergence of the underlying technologies to IP-based systems.

As the Web platform matures, it brings richer and richer capabilities to service providers to extend their existing services to new users and devices, and to propose new and innovative services to their subscribers.

In developed markets, voice and messaging revenues are set on a path of decline; service providers have already started to take their first steps toward their digital pivot, where they can provide additional services to their subscribers at a lower cost. The Web platform is the most open platform on which these new digital services can be built, and its recent extension to real-time communication, payments and Internet-of-Things mark it as a critical component of any digital strategy for service providers.

In developing markets, mobile networks are the primary and often unique Internet connectivity available to the vast majority of users, bringing vast opportunities for operators to serve as enablers of a new episode in the IT boom.

§ WebRTC reshaping the communication landscape

“To influence the evolution of WebRTC, mobile operators must be ready to advocate in the standard bodies, such as IETF and W3C” — GSMA Whitepaper, “WebRTC to complement IP Communication Services.

Web Real-Time Communications

Operators have long been restricted to provide their communication services on a particular device factor (a handset), on a specific network (theirs).

The number of connected devices their subscribers own and operates is exploding, and they want their communications capabilities to follow their usage.

WebRTC reshapes the whole communication landscape by making any connected device a potential communication end-point, bringing audio and video communications anywhere, on any network. This vastly expands the ability of operators to reach their customers.

Web as a value-added services enabler

Web application developers need all the tools they can get to create smooth user experiences.

Operators have precious assets that the millions of Web apps developers are ready to exploit: user billing, identity management, real-time notifications.

By exposing these capabilities as built-in features in Web browsers via its work on Web Payments, WebRTC and Push notifications, W3C dramatically expands the number of potential adopters of operators value-added services.

Identity & Authentication

Operators already play a strong role in acting as a relay for identity verification and authentication.

As the world is moving away from passwords, the W3C work on Web Authentication opens up new opportunities for operators to help their users in managing their digital transactions.

The workshop on Strong Authentication and Identity looked at how existing work on payments, authentication, credentials and upcoming work around decentralized identity systems intersect.

The Web, the Open Platform for Mobile

“What we believe is that the third platform will be the Web, not a proprietary one” — Carlos Domingo, Director of Product Development and Innovation for Telefónica Digital.

§ What's next for Telecommunication on the Web?

Web & Networks

Fifth generation networks (5G) are intended provide higher bandwidth, lower latency and better coverage than today's 4G networks. Improvements to both the physical network and its control plane are expected to make the network more reactive, flexible, and with better performances, and enable better cooperation among its end points.

In parallel, transport protocols are providing more and more options to optimize performance of applications and networks alike.

To take advantage of this program, the application layer must also be up to the task, and the network and application layers will need to cooperate better.

Following up to the Web5G Workshop which started exploring how and where the mechanisms for that collaboration would happen, W3C chartered the Web & Networks Interest Group to explore solutions for web applications to leverage network capabilities in order to achieve better performance and resources allocation, both on the device and network.

WebRTC Next Version

The WebRTC Working Group has released WebRTC 1.0 as a Recommendation and has started work on WebRTC “Next Version”, offering a unique opportunities for bringing to the table new use cases, applying lessons from existing WebRTC services and products.

Web Payments & Operators

In many markets, telecommunication operators also act as payment providers: W3C has identified a number of opportunities for operators to take advantage of the seamless payments mechanisms afforded by our Web Payments activity - come and help make these opportunities come true.

Interoperability for the IoT

The Web of Things Working Group is bringing a first layer of interoperability in the hyper-fragmented space of the Internet of Things through a shared vocabulary for describing “Thing” and a common scripting framework to interact with them.

Active groups

These groups work to create new and innovative services at the convergence of web and mobile industries.

Immersive WebWorking group

The mission of the Immersive Web Working Group is to help bring high-performance Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) (collectively known as XR) to the open Web via APIs to interact with XR devices and sensors in browsers. Visit the Immersive Web Working Group

Web Real-Time CommunicationsWorking group

The mission of the Web Real-Time Communications Working Group is to define client-side APIs to enable Real-Time Communications in Web browsers. These APIs should enable building applications that can be run inside a browser, requiring no extra downloads or plugins, that allow communication between parties using audio, video, and supplementary real-time communication, without having to use intervening servers (unless needed for firewall traversal, or for providing intermediary services). APIs enabling supplementary functions, such as recording, image capture, and screen sharing are also in scope. Visit the Web Real-Time Communications Working Group

WebTransportWorking group

The mission of the WebTransport Working Group is to develop APIs that enable data transfer between browsers and servers with support for multiple data flows, unidirectional data flows, out-of-order delivery, variable reliability and pluggable protocols. Visit the WebTransport Working Group

Web & NetworksInterest group

The mission of the Web & Networks Interest Group is to explore solutions for web applications to leverage network capabilities in order to achieve better performance and resources allocation, both on the device and network. Visit the Web & Networks Interest Group

Immersive WebCommunity group

Our goal is to help bring high-performance Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality to the open Web. Visit the Immersive Web Community Group

§ Why join?

Since 1994, we have been leading the World Wide Web to its full potential by developing protocols and guidelines that ensure long-term growth of the web.

By joining these groups, you have the ability to discuss and drive the standards produced by W3C. The conversations occurring in the groups concern both current and future standards, constantly aiming to make the web a better place. You have the ability to take part in guiding the future of the web.

Our values revolve around building the web for all

The social value of the web is that it enables human communication, commerce, and opportunities to share knowledge. One of W3C's primary goals is to make these benefits available to all people, whatever their hardware, software, network infrastructure, native language, culture, geographical location, or physical or mental ability.

Recent activities in the Network & Communication community

Find out more via recent stories, news, workshops, talks or events.

W3C Members

63 member organizations are involved in the network & communications ecosystem, including:

DappWorks Technology Inc.
ERICSSON
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)
Tencent
AT&T
Ecole Mohammadia d'Ingenieurs Rabat (EMI)
View all members of the network & communications ecosystem

Ways to get involved:

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