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30 September 2020 - Part 1
I was looking for some inspiration for this article on how to build a cool communication app using the CPaaS (Communications Provider as a Service) services from Melrose Labs. There was no shortage of ideas, but one - inspired by my Apple Watch - stood out from the rest. I'm a software engineer by profession, but will keep this article as friendly as possible to developers and non-developers alike.
Imagine having a button that you press, connecting you to a colleague, and you can then speak to them directly. It's a walkie-talkie, or in modern terms, a push-to-talk (PTT) service. Now multiply that to be several buttons, each representing a member of your team. While possibly not the most user friendly of communication application, it is a good demonstration of communication services and will serve - for some at least - as a useful tool. We can work on some aspects to make it user friendly for both caller and callee, rather than immediately hearing a colleague's voice booming over your speaker or headphones. We can maybe also add group broadcasts and establishing ad-hoc conferences between multiple team members. For now, let's not get ahead of ourselves and focus on keeping it simple.
A service from Melrose Labs that immediately comes to mind as being relevant is our support for WebRTC (used in our Video Conferencing and Conference calling services). There is also the underlying platform that we use in our conferencing services, used to connect two or more parties for voice (telephony or web) and video.
We will update this article as we design, develop, deploy and improve the app. Along the way, new Melrose Labs services will roll out that we can use. By the end of the article, you will also be able to follow the steps and deploy your own Office Walkie-Talkie.