Today at SIGNAL, team Twilio unveiled Global and Epic Conference, featuring an entirely new cloud mixing technology. Now, developers can easily embed global audio conferences in their software apps with hundreds, and even thousands of participants.
Conferencing technology prevalent in the market today is meant to be used as a standalone service and designed for local scale. Twilio introduced conferencing as a composable API for developers in 2009. That’s how Twilio customers have turned conferencing into a seamless interaction within collaboration and call center software. With the new cloud mixing technology, conferences can now be both embedded in software apps and can scale globally.
Twilio Conference lets you develop with a full set of advanced features such as start and stop logic, recording, moderator call controls, international dial-in numbers, multilingual text-to-speech, dial-out, and REST API status queries. Participants can connect via mobile, landline and VoIP.
You now have three ways to use Twilio Conference:
- Basic Conference API: For conferences of up to 40 participants, Basic Conference supports the entire suite of advanced features and hosts all calls in the US.
- New Global Conference API: Built with Twilio’s patented Global Low Latency (GLL) technology, Global Conference delivers high quality audio anywhere in the world with support for up to 250 participants.
- New Epic Conference API (Beta): The affectionately named, Epic Conference, removes the limits on the number of participants so that your web or mobile app can handle corporate earnings calls, all-hands meetings, political field communications, whatever you throw at it.
“You go.... No you go... No... Wait... What?”
Maybe it was a tense negotiation where your brilliant counterpoint was misheard or a hilarious joke that was met with utter silence. Conference calls, especially those that are global, can be infuriating. Most of the time, this is a symptom of simple physics. A conference call where all the participants are in, say, Singapore have their audio routed back through a media mixer halfway across the world, thus adding 100s of milliseconds of latency. Awkward pauses, crosstalk and dodgy audio are inevitable.
Using Twilio’s GLL technology, conference calls stay local. For the first time, call setup and media mixing have been separated. That’s how conference call media automatically is hosted through the closest of dozens of data centers located across six major geographic regions. Dedicated media mixing infrastructure in every geographic region ensures that real-time communication traffic avoids long intercontinental routes and multiple hops.
The result is excellent call quality with fewer dropped packets, low jitter, and no annoying crosstalk. Global conference also increases the number of participants that can join a call to 250, a more than 5X improvement over Basic Conference.
Pricing is determined for each conference call depending on where it’s hosted.
- US (East) – $0.0020 / participant per min
- Europe (Dublin) – $0.0030 /participant per min
- Japan (Tokyo) – $0.0040 /participant per min
- Asia Pacific (Singapore) – $0.0040 /participant per min
- Australia (Sydney) – $0.0040 /participant per min
- South America (Sao Paulo) – $0.0050 /participant per min
“Sorry, you’ve reached the maximum number of conference participants. Good bye.”
Whether you’re hosting a call for company shareholders or rallying the base of a political campaign you risk a financial and reputation hit when you start dropping callers. Building conferences of this size into your app simply hasn’t been possible in the past unless you built out the entire infrastructure on your own.
Say hello to Epic Conference and never worry about hitting a ceiling again. Built on the same cloud infrastructure as Global Conference, Epic Conference lets you build apps that handle hundreds or even thousands of global participants.
Twilio can achieve such large conferences because it can use multiple media mixers together. You effectively get a virtual mixer in each region that can be scaled to accommodate any conference capacity.
Epic Conference is now in private beta with pricing to be announced soon. To request early access, please visit www.twilio.com/voice/conference/request-early-access.
All conference types continue to use the <Dial> verb’s <Conference> noun detailed here. Global Conference is enabled by default for all new Twilio accounts and you can simply go into the Twilio Console to switch between products for either an account or subaccount.
Learn more about conference at www.twilio.com/voice/conference.
We can’t wait to see what you build.