Instant messaging and other text-based communication media paved the way for improved human interactions where users can exchange messages from any location in the world at any time within seconds. Video chatting has taken this paradigm shift to another level. With real-time audio and video chat between users, there have been fewer IT ideas that can rival the applications and convenience that are provided by the video chat technology.
As a result, those who designed video calling apps for Android and iPhone were able to found out immense success and increase their revenues at a rapid pace. Some examples of these apps are Skype, FaceTime, Google Duo, Viber, and a lot more apps that are available on the iOS and Android app stores.
Steps to Create a Video Calling App
If you want to dive into this highly lucrative market and make a video calling app, then consider the following steps.
Step 1. Study Your User Base
Understand who your target audience is. If your primary user base includes millennials, then make sure to add the latest stickers, filters, and emoji options that can attract them.
It is possible that you may want to design an app that serves the corporate sector so businesses can easily communicate via secure video calls. For this purpose, you have to think more on the grounds of cybersecurity and add security measures like encryption while also ensuring that the quality of the video is top-notch.
Step 2. Determine the Key Features of your App
While creating a video calling app, you have to consider a number of standard functionalities that are a must-have. Conceptualizing a complex app and trying to add too many features at once can affect the user experience. Therefore, make a list of features that serve as the basic components of your mobile app. Some of these are the following.
To begin with, the first screen that your user should see is the registration screen. Users are too impatient to fill out large sign-up forms, therefore make it as short and uncluttered as possible. You can add only the most necessary fields like name, email address, contact number, etc. For further convenience, integrate your app with all the major social media networks (Gmail, Facebook, Twitter) so users can sign up easily.
In order to facilitate chatting, users must have a profile page that displays all their information.
Incorporate the “add friend” option in the user profile page. Moreover, make sure that you have a search bar where users can search username, email addresses, and phone numbers to find out their friends.
Before contacting other users, there has to be a mechanism that can identify whether or not it is the right time to contact another user. Like other social media apps, users should have a status that can indicate their current state such as available, idle, busy, away, etc. Without adding this functionality, users will phone each other at wrong times, thereby creating inconvenience for each other.
The primary reason to make a video calling app is to allow two parties to communicate via video over text-based chat. However, sometimes it is not possible for users to chat on video. Therefore, they can load another app to send text-based messages to their friends and families. To ensure that your customer app usage increases, add text-based chat functionality as well. Moreover, make sure it contains all the modern features of text-based communication apps.
By using this functionality, users can pick a country. The application can process GPS data and determine the geographical whereabouts of the user. Moreover, it can also allow them to display their current location.
Video chats are reliant on video calls. However, there should be support for voice calling as well so people can especially communicate with friends and families who live in a different country. This feature is useful because standard phone calls can charge quite a lot for foreign-based calls.
Nowadays, one-on-one chat has been eclipsed in popularity by group chat. People love to create groups from their social circles like from an office department, a school club, or a sports team. As a result, they can engage in friendly video chats and well as formal chats about their work and assignments.
Make sure that the messages that are sent between senders and recipients are supported by encryption. The encryption process begins at the sender’s point while the decryption process starts off at the recipient’s address. Encryption ensures that even if by some luck hackers break into your app, they are unable to read the contents of messages, thereby preventing personal or corporate data theft.
Whether you design mobile app for iOS or Android, your app should feature in the notifications so whenever a call or new message comes, you can check it instantly by sliding down the notification bar of your phone.
Step 3. Decide About the Technology Stack
Now, let’s focus on the technology stack that you require to create the app. Many video-based apps use WebRTC. WebRTC is a technology that supports real-time communication in desktop and mobile systems with the use of a wide range of APIs. Since it is open-source and has acquired the support of major IT brands like Mozilla, Opera, and Google, therefore it has matured and evolved into a dependable technology. For a basic app, you can make use of the following APIs
- RTCPeerConnection – turns on audio/video communication along with bandwidth management and encryption.
- RTCDataChannel – Allows P2P communication with all types of data.
- MediaStream – facilitates the app in accessing the stream via either camera and microphone.
You can also pick OpenTok, Twilio, Sinch, and PubNub to develop your mobile app. If enhanced security is a requirement, then authenticated access and stream security can be powered via Parse Core.