Call (C2Call) lets you make web-based P2P VoIP phone calls direct from your browser whether you're using Linux, Windows, or an Apple Mac. The software is a Java widget that is loaded temporary from the C2Call web page into your browser each time you use C2Call. Using the C2Call Java widget I spoke with Martin Feuerhahn, Director of Actai Networks Pte Ltd Taiwan Branch. The voice quality was excellent and the latency wasn't too bad either considering I'm in Connecticut and he's in Taiwan!
In Internet Explorer when you first load the widget you'll see that the application has a digital signature that has been validated by a trusted source:
Actai Networks GmbH, the company mentioned in the above screenshot is the parent company of www.c2call.com. In Firefox the app just ran without showing the digital signature verification message. The client is just 1.1MB in size so it's fairly small.
The beauty of C2Call is that you can send a call invitation to anybody you want to talk to simply by sending an email invite directly from the www.c2call.com
applet. The recipient can click on the link and can instantly talk to you. This is a really great viral feature that is especially good for non-technical people. For instance, you can invite your grandma to talk simply by emailing her. Unlike Skype which would require her to install the software, register a username, configure Skype, etc., grandma can just click a link and speak to you almost instantly. Here's a sample email invite being sent out to my boss and industry-leading VoIP pundit, Rich Tehrani.
The widget is SIP-based and importantly it uses the Speex codec
, which gives the software its very good voice quality. So you're probably wondering how a Java-based VoIP app fares versus a Flash-based VoIP app, such as the Flashphone app I've written about
. Well, for one if you decide to use an Adobe Flash-based solution, you have to use the Nellymoser codec
, which is not a free codec
Second, Adobe Flash requires the use of a media server, which Martin claims is not as scalable as their true P2P (peer-to-peer) VoIP solution.
Another feature of note is that C2Call can traverse about 90% of firewalls using standard SIP technology. The official launch isn't for another couple weeks, but if anyone wants an invite give me a shout (Contact link above).