Brussels / 4 & 5 February 2023


Social audio applications with Janus

Using WebRTC broadcasting for more than just video

WebRTC is not always all about video, and actually applications like Clubhouse, Twitter Spaces and Reddit Talk have proven you can create engaging scenarios also using audio alone. This presentation will give a brief overview on how you can build a similar kind of application using the Janus WebRTC Server, by focusing on the broadcasting and scalability aspects.

While it may seem weird to think of WebRTC applications without video, that shouldn't be the case. In fact, the success of podcasts or platforms like Audible are proof of the fact there's a lot of people definitely interested in consuming content that's only made of audio. When you think of applications like the aforementioned Clubhouse, Twitter Spaces and Reddit Talk, it's clear that the same can be said when there's potential engagement as well, and where the actual conversation becomes more important than any visual aid that may come with it.

This made me think of how one could build a similar application using open source tools, and the Janus WebRTC Server in particular (which as a matter of fact is apparently part of the Twitter Spaces stack itself). Specifically, in the presentation I'll focus mostly on what building blocks you can start from, and how you can build a larger application on top of them in a scalable way (with or without WebRTC as a distribution channel), taking advantage of functionality Janus ships out of the box (like the RTP forwarders that were presented at FOSDEM a couple of years ago), with a few considerations on how the current audio support in WebRTC can be of help.


Photo of Lorenzo Miniero Lorenzo Miniero