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The Rise of Video
We have entered the era of a video-first culture where video is core to how we connect, collaborate and grow. Other than providing great value to remote work, video also helps boost productivity and efficiency. And for businesses that prioritise customer experience and continuity, it’s even more crucial for them to embrace this medium and map for the next-generation digital transformation.
While the market is flooded with video meeting solutions that work great for general meetings and virtual hangouts, customer-fronting businesses that prioritise ease-of-use and want to offer in-app experience should opt for embedding CPaaS Video API into their current applications.
What is CPaaS Video API?
Think of Communication Platform-as-a-Service as a building block. You can use it to weave video and other communication channels into your existing solution or build a whole new communication application to suit your needs without the complexity of building infrastructure. Comes with easy-to-use video API, developers can rapidly build innovative communication experience within any browsers or mobile app, thereby offering high time-to-market value. It also enables new functionality and use cases that might have otherwise been difficult to achieve, thus opening new revenue opportunities.
Key Factors to Consider Before Choosing An Ideal Video API Provider
It is important to know and understand that not all CPaaS platforms are alike. Beside capabilities and features, one should also look into the flexibility and customisation it can offer. Mentioned below are some of the pointers that you can consider while evaluating the right provider:
Meet 5 Video API Providers that Are Winning the Market
Twilio- Twilio is a cloud-based communications platform that offers a range of services to enterprises and developers. They allow developers to use standard web languages to integrate video as well as other communication channel into their web and mobile applications. Twilio gives a comprehensive repository of documentation for users to access information regarding REST APIs and SDKs. While their Support team interacts regularly with users, their detailed tutorials and setup guides are also easily accessible. For enterprises that are comfortable hosting on Twilio cloud platform, this is a good go-to-provider.
Pricing: For video group of up to 50 participants, they are charging $0.004/per participant per minute. There will be additional charges for recording, media storage and others.
Vonage- Vonage is considered as one of the noteworthy PaaS companies to build video calling apps on Android, iOS and Web. As they offer robust video chat SDKs & APIs, the customisation or integration of video calling apps become a lot simpler. Vonage’s solutions are embedded with WebRTC and modern features that allow developers to enhance the video call experience across platforms. Like Twilio, they also offer a comprehensive range of communication APIs besides Video. However, they do not have the flexibility to host the solution beyond their own cloud environment.
Pricing: $9.99/month for the first 2,000 streamed subscribed minutes. Additional calls will be charged at $0.00475/subscribed minute. Note: Their charging is based on subscribed minutes and can be more expensive than other players when the number of users increases. Screen sharing will also be counted as an individual media stream.
EnableX - This is one provider that offers a comprehensive range of communication channels to support omnichannel experiences. Beside its key product, Video API, it also comes with SIP Voice, SMS, Chat, Emotion AI, Virtual numbers and more. What makes EnableX stand out in the market is its flexibility to support multi-cloud deployment options- public, private, on-premise and hybrid. Unlike other CPaaS providers that only offer public cloud-based solution, EnableX ability to deploy the platform on customers’ data center help meets enterprises regulatory and security needs. They are often appreciated by the customers for providing unparalleled support to help their applications get up and running quickly. EnableX also offers professional services packages to assist its clients with custom development, integration, testing and more.
Pricing: Pay-as-you-use pricing model, starting at $0.0040/Participant/Min. No additional charges for screen sharing and other communication features. Volume discount applies.
Sinch- Sinch is a cloud-based communications platform that can be used by developers to easily add SMS, MMS, IM chat, voice, video, and verification into the applications that they are working on. While they do offer video API, their main business focus is on promoting its high-volume/high-quality messaging. Its customer base is led by large enterprises as well as technology vendors, primarily using SMS via A2P.
Pricing: starting at $0.003 per minute for the first 2,500 minutes per month
Agora- Agora has been providing video call features to SMEs & enterprises globally so they can connect and collaborate better. Agora’s SDK provides end-to-end customisation of features, background segmentations & themes. They also offer multiple video communication channels like One-to-one, One-to-multi-party video calling and video conferencing to users virtually. All the calls carried over the Agora applications are completely encrypted.
Pricing: $0.00399/minute for 720P and below resolution. For more than 720P, i.e. HD+, charges are at $0.01499/minute. There is some complexity in deciding if the call is HD or not HD and once screen sharing comes into play, the entire video meeting will be considered HD+.
The CPaaS market is expanding and integrating live video technology into existing or new applications can be highly beneficial for businesses vis a vis costs, flexibility, and customer experience. With more CPaaS providers entering the market, there’s already a race to roll out newer capabilities and gain market share. Since video is where the maximum growth and adoption will be, choosing the provider with the strongest video offering will be crucial for businesses.