QuickBlox Documentation

QuickBlox provides powerful Chat API and SDK to add real-time messaging and video calls to your web and mobile apps. Learn how to integrate QuickBlox across multiple platforms and devices. Check out our detailed guides to make integration easy and fast.

Video Calling

Learn how to add peer-to-peer video calls to your app.

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This is our new documentation for beta version of QuickBlox React Native SDK. Please contact our Customer Support Team to provide your feedback, suggestions, and requests to improve this page.

QuickBlox Video Calling API is built on top of WebRTC. It allows adding real-time video communication features into your app similar to Skype using API easily. The communication is happening between peers representing camera devices. There are two peer types:

  • Local peer is a device running the app right now.
  • Remote peer is an opponent device.

Establishing real-time video communication between two peers involves 3 phases:

  1. Signaling. At this phase, the peers’ local IPs and ports where they can be reached (ICE candidates) are exchanged as well as their media capabilities and call session control messages.
  2. Discovery. At this phase, the public IPs and ports at which endpoints can be reached are discovered by STUN/TURN server.
  3. Establishing a connection. At this phase, the data are sent directly to each party of the communication process.

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Pay attention

In order to start using Video Calling Module, you need to connect to QuickBlox Chat first. The signaling in the QuickBox WebRTC module is implemented over the XMPP protocol using QuickBlox Chat Module. So QuickBlox Chat Module is used as a signaling transport for Video Calling API.

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Note

Please use this WebRTC Video Calling to make the Group Calls with 4 or fewer users. Because of Mesh architecture we use for multi-point where every participant sends and receives its media to all other participants, the current solution supports group calls with up to 4 people.

Before you begin

  1. Visit our Key Concepts page to get an overall understanding of the most important QuickBlox concepts.
  2. Register a QuickBlox account. This is a matter of a few minutes and you will be able to use this account to build your apps.
  3. Configure QuickBlox SDK for your app. Check out our Setup page for more details.
  4. Create a user session to be able to use QuickBlox functionality. See our Authentication page to learn how to do it.
  5. Connect to the Chat server to provide a signaling mechanism for Video Calling API. Follow our Chat page to learn about chat connection settings and configuration.

Initialize WebRTC

WebRTC module allows to process calls. When a call is initiated or received, a call session is created. If the module is not initialized, it will not be able to create the call session and process calls consequently. To initialize WebRTC module call init() method.

QB.webrtc
  .init()
  .then(function () { /* module is ready for calls processing */ })
  .catch(function (e) { /* handle error */ })

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Note

If you miss calling init() method, a Promise.reject(error) is returned: The call service is not connected.

Manage calls

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Each WebRTC session is assigned a unique session identifier (sessionId). You can get the sessionId from the session value returned from call(), accept(), reject(), hangUp() methods or from any event emitted by QB.webrtc module.

To process events such as incoming call, you need to add an event handler. Learn more details about the event handler configuration in the Event handler section.

import { NativeEventEmitter } from 'react-native'
import QB from 'quickblox-react-native-sdk'

function eventHandler (event) {
  const {
    type, // type of the event (i.e. `@QB/CALL` or `@QB/REJECT`)
    payload
  } = event
  const {
    userId, // id of QuickBlox user who initiated this event (if any)
    session // current or new session
  } = payload
  // handle as necessary
}
const emitter = new NativeEventEmitter(QB.webrtc)
Object.keys(QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE).forEach(key => {
  emitter.addListener(QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE[key], eventHandler)
})

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Note

The example above shows assigning one handler for all module events but you can assign separate handlers for each event.

Initiate a call

To call users, you should create a call session and start calling using call() method.

import QB from 'quickblox-react-native-sdk'

//...

const params = {
  opponentsIds: [12345, 12346],
  type: QB.webrtc.RTC_SESSION_TYPE.VIDEO
}

QB.webrtc
  .call(params)
  .then(function (session) { /* session created */ })
  .catch(function (e) { /* handle error */ })

Parameters

Description

opponentsIds

IDs of the opponents.

type

Call type: QB.webrtc.RTC_SESSION_TYPE.VIDEO, QB.webrtc.RTC_SESSION_TYPE.AUDIO.

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Note

After this, your opponents will receive the QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.CALL event.

Accept a call

To accept a call request, call accept() method and pass sessionId to tell SDK which call session to accept.

const userInfo = {
  // custom data can be passed using this object
  // only [string]: string type supported
}

QB.webrtc
  .accept({ sessionId, userInfo })
  .then(function (session) { /* handle session */ })
  .catch(function (e) { /* handle error */ })

Parameters

Description

sessionId

Call session identifier.

userInfo

(optional) Custom user data.

Reject a call

To reject a call request, use reject() method and pass sessionId parameter to tell SDK which call session to reject.

const userInfo = {
  // custom data can be passed using this object
  // only [string]: string type supported
}

QB.webrtc
  .reject({ sessionId, userInfo })
  .then(function (session) { /* handle session */ })
  .catch(function (e) { /* handle error */ })

Parameters

Description

sessionId

Call session identifier.

userInfo

(optional) Custom user data.

End a call

To end a call, use hangUp() method and pass sessionId parameter to tell SDK which call session to end.

const userInfo = {
  // custom data can be passed using this object
  // only [string]: string type supported
}

QB.webrtc
  .hangUp({ sessionId, userInfo })
  .then(function (session) { /* handle session */ })
  .catch(function (e) { /* handle error */ })

Parameters

Description

sessionId

Call session identifier.

userInfo

(optional) Custom user data.

Release resource

When you do not want to receive and process video calls, for example, when a user is logged out, you have to release QB.webrtc module. Call release() method that allows to unregister QB.webrtc module from receiving any video chat events and closes existing signaling channels.

QB.webrtc
  .release()
  .then(() => { /* released successfully */ })
  .catch(e => { /* handle error */ })

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Note

release() method should be called when a video track is no more valid. If you do not call this method, you will get a memory leak.

Local/remote video view

Set up two video chat layouts for remote and local video tracks to be able to show the video.

  • A remote video track represents a remote peer video stream from a remote camera app. Specify userId for the remote camera app of the remote peer.
  • A local video track represents a local peer video stream from a local camera app. Specify userId for the local camera app of the local peer.

WebRTCView subscribes to QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.RECEIVED_VIDEO_TRACK event under the hood so you do not need to subscribe to it manually. Thus, once the SDK receives data that a remote video track was received, it creates the event of RECEIVED_VIDEO_TRACK type with userId and sessionId properties. If userId matches with the one in properties, the video starts playing.

import WebRTCView from 'quickblox-react-native-sdk/RTCView'

//...

render() {
  return (
  //...
  <WebRTCView
    sessionId={session.id}
    style={styles.video} // add styles as necessary
    userId={userId} // your user's Id for local video or occupantId for remote
  />
  )
}

Parameters

Description

sessionId

Call session identifier.

style

View styles.

userId

User identifier.

Once WebRTCView is mounted, it is ready to play the video. Thus:

  • You can subscribe to event QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.RECEIVED_VIDEO_TRACK and then add WebRTCViews.
    or
  • You can add WebRTCViews immediately and wait for the event of type RECEIVED_VIDEO_TRACK to come in and trigger playback.

Event handler

To process events such as incoming call, call reject, hang up, etc. you need to set up the event handler. The event handler processes various events that happen with the call session or peer connection in your app. The events are emitted by the WebRTC module of QuickBlox React Native SDK.

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Note

Once the WebRTC module is initialized, it can start emitting events, so you can assign event handler even before module initialization.

Using the callbacks provided by the event handler, you can implement and execute the event-related processing code. For example, the accept() method is called when you accept an incoming call from the opponent. This method receives information about the call session and additional key-value data about the user.

QuickBlox React Native SDK persistently interacts with the server via XMPP connection that works as a signaling transport for establishing a call between two or more peers. It receives the callbacks of the asynchronous events which happen with the call and peer connection. This allows you to track these events and build your own video calling features around them.

Call session events

The table below lists all supported call session event types.

Event type

Description

QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.CALL

An incoming call event has been received by the peer after the call session has been initiated.

QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.AΠ‘Π‘EPT

An incoming call has been accepted by the peer.

QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.REJECT

An incoming call has been rejected by the remote peer without accepting the call.

QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.HANG_UP

An accepted call has been ended by the peer by pressing the hang-up button.

QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.
RECEIVED_VIDEO_TRACK

A remote video track has been received by the remote peer.

QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.
PEER_CONNECTION_STATE_CHANGED

A peer connection state has been changed. View all available peer connection states in the Peer connection states section.

QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.NOT_ANSWER

No answer received from the remote peer within the timer expiration period.

QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.CALL_END

An accepted call has been ended. A call session was closed.

To track call session events, you should add the event handler.

import { NativeEventEmitter } from 'react-native'
import QB from 'quickblox-react-native-sdk'

const emitter = new NativeEventEmitter(QB.webrtc)

function onCall (event) {
  const {
    type, // "@QB/CALL"
    payload
  } = event
  const {
    userId, // id of QuickBlox user
    session, // incoming (new) session
    userInfo // custom data (object)
  } = payload
  // handle as necessary
}

function onCallAccept (event) {
  const {
    type, // "@QB/ACCEPT"
    payload
  } = event
  const {
    userId, // id of QuickBlox user
    session, // session
    userInfo // custom data (object)
  } = payload
  // handle as necessary
}

function onHangUp (event) {
  const {
    type, // "@QB/HANG_UP"
    payload
  } = event
  const {
    userId, // id of QuickBlox user
    session, // session
    userInfo // custom data (object)
  } = payload
  // handle as necessary
}

function onNotAnswer (event) {
  const {
    type, // "@QB/NOT_ANSWER"
    payload
  } = event
  const {
    userId, // id of QuickBlox user
    session // session
  } = payload
  // handle as necessary
}

function onReject (event) {
  const {
    type, // "@QB/REJECT"
    payload
  } = event
  const {
    userId,  // id of QuickBlox user
    session, // session
    userInfo // custom data (object)
  } = payload
  // handle as necessary
}

function onCallEnd (event) {
  const {
    type, // "@QB/CALL_END"
    payload
  } = event
  const {
    session // session
  } = payload
  // handle as necessary
}

function onVideoTrackReceived (event) {
  const {
    type, // "@QB/RECEIVED_VIDEO_TRACK"
    payload
  } = event
  const {
    userId,   // id of QuickBlox user
    sessionId // id of QuickBlox WebRTC session
  } = payload
  // handle as necessary
}

function onPeerStateChanged (event) {
  const {
    type, // "@QB/PEER_CONNECTION_STATE_CHANGED"
    payload
  } = event
  const {
    userId, // id of QuickBlox user
    session, // session
    state // new peerconnection state (one of QB.webrtc.RTC_PEER_CONNECTION_STATE)
  } = payload
  // handle as necessary
}

emitter.addListener(QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.CALL, onCall)
emitter.addListener(QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.ACCEPT, onCallAccept)
emitter.addListener(QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.HANG_UP, onHangUp)
emitter.addListener(QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.NOT_ANSWER, onNotAnswer)
emitter.addListener(QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.REJECT, onReject)
emitter.addListener(QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.CALL_END, onCallEnd)
emitter.addListener(QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.RECEIVED_VIDEO_TRACK, onVideoTrackReceived)
emitter.addListener(QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.PEER_CONNECTION_STATE_CHANGED, onPeerStateChanged)

Each event emitted by WebRTC is an Object type having the following properties:

Parameters

Description

type

The name of the event you have subscribed to (for example, QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.CALL, QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.REJECT, etc).

payload

Available if the event transmits the data. Almost all events contain the session (to identify in which session this event occurred) and userId (to indicate initiator of the event) properties.

Go to the Resources section to see a sequence diagram for a regular call workflow.

Peer connection state

The peer connection state can change. To monitor the states of your peer connections (users), you need to add the event handler for QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.PEER_CONNECTION_STATE_CHANGED event type.

function onPeerStateChanged (event) {
  const {
    type, // "@QB/PEER_CONNECTION_STATE_CHANGED"
    payload
  } = event
  const {
    userId, // id of QuickBlox user
    session, // session
    state // new peerconnection state (one of QB.webrtc.RTC_PEER_CONNECTION_STATE)
  } = payload
  // handle as necessary
}

emitter.addListener(
  QB.webrtc.EVENT_TYPE.PEER_CONNECTION_STATE_CHANGED,
  onPeerStateChanged
);

The following table lists all supported peer connection states.

Connection state

Description

QB.webrtc.RTC_PEER_CONNECTION_STATE.NEW

Gathering information to establish connection.

QB.webrtc.RTC_PEER_CONNECTION_STATE.CONNECTED

A peer is connected to a call session.

QB.webrtc.RTC_PEER_CONNECTION_STATE.FAILED

A peer failed to join a call session.

QB.webrtc.RTC_PEER_CONNECTION_STATE.DISCONNECTED

A peer is disconnected from a call session.

QB.webrtc.RTC_PEER_CONNECTION_STATE.CLOSED

A call session is closed by the peer.

Resources

A regular call workflow.

Updated 4 days ago


What's Next

Advanced

Video Calling


Learn how to add peer-to-peer video calls to your app.

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