Real-time video has become an integral part of any organization's operations. It's no secret that video significantly enhances communication, improves collaboration, and drives engagement. However, an increasing number of organizations realize that off-the-shelf video conferencing tools like Zoom, Google Meet, and Teams do not satiate their use cases and need to look for a video conferencing SDK.
Vonage's Video API - TokBox is one solution organizations look at for a video SDK. And although TokBox claims to be a complete Video conferencing SDK, it is far from perfect and has its fair share of drawbacks.
For example, the Vonage docs are not up to par compared to some emerging video SDK solutions like Dyte. Moreover, there is a significant lack of plugins in TokBox, further adding to the concerns of users.
If you're still relying on TokBox for your live video needs, it's time to consider the advantages other platforms can bring to your business. We discuss many such platforms in this blog.
What to look for in a TokBox (Opentok) alternative?
Modern-day business owners always look to up their game and incorporate live video into their operations. Building a live video app can be intimidating, especially with complex standalone SDKs. But we've got your back!
Here are some things you should consider when searching for a TokBox alternative:
- Added Features: Your current SDK might lack unique features like customizable live experiences, prebuilt UI kit components, and cross-platform streaming. While looking at alternative SDKs, consider a solution that can help you tap into fully branded live experiences tailored to your brand in many ways, leaving you with a competitive advantage.
- Analytical Capabilities: A powerful video SDK should come equipped with analytical tools in its arsenal to assess the quality of your videos. You should be able to integrate data-driven strategies into your workflows seamlessly. It must give you accurate video call data across different metrics, enabling you to track the success of your live videos and better understand your users' habits.
- Engagement Options: Engaging with your audience is paramount; therefore, ensure your SDK gives you access to rich chat, screen sharing, text sharing, whiteboard, emojis, and more. A suitable SDK should offer plugins to make your engagements more fruitful.
- Network management: You shouldn't worry about hard coding the different edge cases that can disrupt a video call while building live in your product. It should be the platform that automatically takes care of the backend, leaving you with more time to focus on improving your product and its offerings.
With so many video SDKs on the market, it can be overwhelming to decide on the right one.
We've done the research to round up the top TokBox alternatives worth your consideration. So keep reading to discover the perfect video SDK to supercharge your business with reliable live video capabilities.
Here is a List of the Top 10 TokBox Alternatives
Now that we've assessed TokBox (OpenTok) limitations and what to look for in a Jitsi alternative, let's checkout Top 10 TokBox (OpenTok or Vonage) Alternatives including Dyte, Jitsi, Agora, Zoom Video SDK, Twilio, EnableX, Daily, AWS Chime, Mux and Whereby.
Let's take a deep dive into features, limitations and pricing for each of these Tokbox Alternatives:
- Zoom Video SDK
- AWS chime
It is time to plunge into live video-calling experiences and discover some of the finest alternatives to TokBox (Opentok).
In this section, we will take a panoramic view of each solution and compare them to TokBox to help you make an informed decision for your business.
Our reviews are based on extensive research and honest user feedback, so you can trust us to provide valuable insights as you explore the world of video SDK solutions like never before!
The platform also includes Jitsi Videobridge, an XMPP server (Prosody) that supports hosting multiple video conferences.
Jitsi Videobridge uses WebRTC technology that provides default encryption. Users can access Jitsi Meet through web browsers or Android/iOS apps. It is a free and open-source platform that allows end-to-end encryption, allowing users to inspect and modify the code to meet their needs.
However, if you wish to record calls, you need some additional setup. If you want to live stream your conference to YouTube and access the recording there, you must manually configure Jibri.
Scalability in terms of participation is also an added disadvantage for Jitsi users. The platform seems inadequate, and the tools still need to optimize end-point hardware to deliver stable video quality.
Other minor issues in the platform include jitters or fluctuations during screen sharing or text sharing due to a lot of bandwidth consumption by the platform.
Jitsi is an open-source platform granting users unrestricted usage and development capabilities. As a user, you have complete control over how the platform is used, and it can adapt to your unique requirements.
However, to use Jitsi, you must obtain your servers and configure your user interface from scratch. Furthermore, you must pay an additional fee if you require product support.
Dyte provides a live video conferencing and voice SDK enabling developers to seamlessly integrate customized, secure, high-quality live video into web, mobile, and desktop applications with minimal code.
One of Dyte's significant advantages is the automated audio/video publish and subscribe logic management, which allows developers to focus on designing innovative features that enhance user retention. Here are some of the core features offered by Dyte:
- Dyte's SDK offers features, including customizable live experiences with core SDKs and prebuilt UI kit components, dependable video quality, interactive features, effortless integration, comprehensive analytics, cross-platform streaming, and seamless scaling.
- Developers can leverage Dyte's SDKs and UI kit components to create fully branded live experiences tailored to their product. The SDKs and UI kit components simplify creating customized live events at scale.
- Its advanced technology ensures that users' live videos always run smoothly, regardless of the network conditions. With intelligent bandwidth switching and minimal lag and frame drops, users are guaranteed a seamless experience every time.
- The video SDK offers out-of-the-box features like chat, emoji reactions, whiteboard, and multi-screen sharing to enhance users' live experiences. Developers can add even more features with Dyte's plugins to create an interactive and engaging experience.
- It provides detailed analytics on video call metrics like participant interactions and duration, allowing developers to make data-driven decisions to improve the video call quality.
- Developers can easily embed live video into their products using Dyte's top-tier API support and one-click configuration. Dyte's SDK makes integrating live video into mobile devices, web browsers, and desktop applications easy.
- With its cross-platform streaming, developers can stream live events to thousands of viewers across multiple platforms, including YouTube, LinkedIn, and Facebook. The built-in RTMP makes it easy to reach audiences wherever they are.
- Dyte's technology ensures that live audio and video can scale from just a few users to over 10,000 users with RTMP output. And the SDK provides that live events are scalable and reliable, regardless of the audience size.
Dyte pricing model is based on usage. It offers 10,000 free minutes of usage each month. After that, users are charged for each minute used, with different rates for different services.
It charges $0.004 per user per minute for product pricing, $0.010 per minute for recordings, and $0.015 per minute for RTMP out.
To estimate the cost of using Dyte, you can use its online cost estimator on the pricing page. Dyte also provides 24/7 support to customers via various channels, including essential queries, technical support, and assistance with significant events.
We recently wrote a blog about Tokbox's (Opentok) pricing plans and how it differentiates from Dyte's pricing.
Agora is a flexible SDK that implements real-time video and audio communication in web and mobile applications.
It is widely used in various industries, including video distribution, live gaming, e-sports, voice chat, IoT, video chat, social networking services (SNS), contact centers, and more. It also provides customization options to meet specific entertainment-related distribution needs.
Its ultra-low latency streaming capabilities deliver an ultra-fast live video streaming experience with a latency of 400ms or less. Its advanced algorithms monitor the live video streaming network in real-time and automatically select the most efficient routing path.
But not all’s rainbows and clouds in the world of Agora. It offers a complex pricing structure — unsuitable for businesses with limited budgets — and lackluster support. Agora's staff will make you want to switch if you prefer a more hands-on approach when needing help.
The total audio and video usage duration across all projects under the Agora account is calculated at the end of each month. After deducting the 10,000 free monthly minutes, the remaining use is multiplied by its corresponding unit price to determine the monthly cost.
The basic formula to calculate the monthly cost is,
Monthly cost = audio minutes x audio unit price + video minutes of each type x video unit price of each type.
Premium pricing ($/1,000 participant minutes): Audio - $0.99, HD Video - $3.99, Full HD Video - $8.99
Standard pricing ($/1,000 participant minutes): Audio - $0.59, HD Video - $1.99, Full HD Video - $4.59
If you're interested in delving deeper, we've written a comprehensive article on Agora pricing that provides an in-depth analysis.
The Zoom Video SDK allows developers to create custom video-based applications using Zoom's platform. The SDK was introduced to provide customers with access to the technology behind Zoom because the classic client was unfit for many customer use cases.
The Video SDK delivers video, audio, screen sharing, chat, and data streams as a service, allowing developers to select the features they want to use. In addition, the Video SDK comes with server-side APIs and webhooks, providing complete control to developers.
With the Zoom Video SDK, developers can create custom video layouts for up to 1,000 participants/co-hosts per session. However, customization is limited to in-session chat, screen sharing, third-party live streaming, and call layout management.
Other drawbacks of this popular SDK include limited in-session screen sharing, unstable third-party live streaming, and a lack of proper call layout management. Moreover, it only allows the predetermined host and participant roles, which makes collaboration difficult when you need to modify permission for peers.
Zoom SDK pricing:
Zoom offers 10,000 free minutes every month, with pricing starting at $0.0035 per user minute after that. Recordings cost $100 per month for 1TB of storage, and telephony costs $100 per month. It offers three customer support plans: Access, Premier, and Premier+.
Twilio is a communication platform providing developers with various APIs to build business communication solutions across multiple channels.
Its SDK supports different programming languages, such as Java and Ruby, making it accessible to almost any developer to integrate into their applications.
Twilio provides web, iOS, and Android SDKs allowing multiple audio and video inputs. However, developers must manually configure them, requiring additional coding. Twilio's call insights provide error tracking and analysis in case of call drops or errors, but it's solely fundamental.
Twilio supports 50 hosts within a call and 50 participants, including hosts. You can switch to Twilio Live for HLS streaming if you need to accommodate more participants. Unfortunately, Twilio doesn't offer any plugins for easy product development.
However, it's important to note that some features are unavailable in Twilio Video SDK. For example, features like screen share, chat, whiteboard, and plugins are unavailable. Additionally, if you're looking for in-depth analytics to track user engagement and performance, be prepared to pay extra charges.
Twilio Video pricing:
Twilio's pricing starts at $4 per 1,000 minutes, with additional costs for recordings, recording compositions, and storage. Its free support plan offers API status notifications and email support during business hours.
Additional support services, including 24/7 live chat support, support escalation line, quarterly status review, and guaranteed response times, are available for a fee based on the support plan, usually a percentage of the monthly plan or a certain minimum amount (ranging from $250/month to $5,000/month).
You can find more details about Twilio Video pricing.
EnableX is a communication platform offering live video, voice, and messaging SDKs to enable developers, independent software vendors (ISVs), system integrators (SIs), and service providers to create live experiences.
This platform allows users to save time and avoid the complexities of building and maintaining network infrastructure while accessing a scalable and secure communication solution.
It includes a low-code video builder for custom video-calling solutions, live video streams, and a self-service portal that provides extensive reporting and live analytics.
However, like any platform, it has a few drawbacks to consider. Many online reviews point out that:
- EnableX should have a better code structure so users can efficiently implement it.
- It only has a few options for customizing the user interface compared to other platforms.
- There is a lack of branding options, which could be a dealbreaker for companies looking to establish their brand identity.
- It could improve its documentation. While it's good, it could be more structured and include sample code in one place to simplify implementation.
EnableX operates on a usage-based pricing model of $0.004 per participant minute for rooms with up to 50 participants, with pricing available for over 50 participants upon contacting the sales team.
Additional charges include recording at $0.010 per participant per minute, transcoding at $0.010 per minute, storage at $0.05 per GB per month, and RTMP streaming at $0.010 per minute.
Daily is a platform that offers an SDK for developers to easily integrate real-time video and audio calls into their web applications. The SDK provides a simplified development process by handling common backend video call use cases for different platforms.
There are two methods for building real-time video and audio calls with Daily:
- Daily Client SDKs — offering core APIs for custom user interface creation
- Daily Prebuilt — an embeddable video call widget that can be easily added to any web application with minimal code.
Daily supports Native iOS and Android mobile libraries that enable real-time video and audio integration. The platform also provides collaborative features such as HD screen sharing, breakout rooms, raise a hand, live transcription, whiteboard, and customizable text chat to enhance the user experience.
Daily users often complain of poor video quality when using the SDK on unstable networks due to the lack of network management capabilities offered by Daily, which developers themselves must implement. Additionally, developing the user interface can be time-consuming as there are no readily available sample applications or UI kits. The SDK provider does not offer plugins to extend the functionality of the SDK, and support may not be readily available unless paid for.
Daily's pricing model starts at $0.004 per participant minute, with 10,000 free monthly refreshed minutes. Audio usage is charged at $0.00099 per user minute, streaming at $0.0012 per minute, RTMP at $0.015 per minute, and recording at $0.01349 per GB. All accounts receive free email and chat support, while advanced support features can be added with add-on packages starting from $250 per month.
Amazon Chime SDK is a video conferencing tool for business users on Amazon Web Services. The platform includes VoIP calling, video messaging capabilities, and virtual meeting functionality allowing users to participate in or host meetings remotely.
Its feature set lets users schedule online meetings and participate via audio or visual services. The platform includes screen-sharing, remote desktop control, and text-based chat for individuals or groups.
Amazon Chime offers security measures to protect data, such as AWS Identity and Access Management policies, user administration, policy management, and SSO setup.
Moreover, many reviews share that AWS Chime has a complex interface that users have a tough time getting used to, and it does not offer an intuitive navigation structure.
The current customer support is pretty mediocre, and different users report varying times for query resolution depending on the customer service executive on the call.
AWS Chime pricing:
Amazon Chime offers a multi-tier pricing model for video conferencing and online meeting services. The first tier is a free basic plan that allows users to access one-on-one audio/video calls and group chats.
The Plus plan is the second tier, priced at $2.50 per monthly user. This plan provides additional features such as screen sharing, remote desktop control, 1 GB of message history per user, and Active Directory integration.
The third tier is the Pro plan, priced at $15 per user per month. This plan includes all the features of the Plus plan and allows meetings for three or more people, supports up to 100 attendees, and provides recording, Outlook integration, and other advanced features.
Mux is an API that enables developers to integrate live and on-demand video experiences into their applications. After completion, it provides broadcasting options for real-time sessions to a large audience via live streaming and on-demand versions.
It simplifies video encoding, delivery, and renditions to ensure optimal video quality on every device.
It provides an SDK for integrating real-time video and live streams into various web-based, iOS-based, and Android-based applications.
Each call can host up to 100 participants in a real-time WebRTC environment, with each participant streaming video content.
However, Mux users suggest that the platform doesn't have a robust UI and needs better ways to represent data, such as graphs and charts, to make report management more inclusive.
Also, while most of the pricing for Mux is competitive, the price point for video encoding is higher. Since many users only opt for SD-quality video, they suggest that it should have a multi-tier pricing structure.
Mux charges a one-time credit of $20 for new registrations and subsequent charges of $0.004 per minute for real-time video, $0.04 per minute for encoding, $0.003 per minute for storage, and $0.0012 per minute for streaming.
The platform also offers simulcast capabilities for $0.02 per minute and auto-generated captions at $0.024 per minute after the initial free 6,000 minutes.
Whereby is a web-based platform that offers users a unique, permanent meeting room, providing flexible meetings without downloading or registering. Guests can quickly join meetings by clicking on the link provided.
Moreover, Whereby has introduced a hybrid meeting solution that reduces echo and eliminates the need for expensive hardware, making it ideal for distributed teams.
It also lets users offer video calls anywhere on their website, mobile app, or web products without opening external links or apps. This feature makes it easy and convenient for users to access video calls quickly and efficiently.
It follows the rules of GDPR, a set of privacy laws in Europe. If the user connecting to their servers is in Europe, they will also connect to a server in Europe, ensuring that all privacy laws are followed. However, users complaining about data encryption often block it due to poor security settings.
The platform is far from perfect. User reviews suggest that Whereby has a free trial but doesn't allow more free users post-trial period compared to alternatives. There is a significant lack of accessible apps and plugins within the platform. Optimizing the available screen area optimally is tough, and developers must enable more integration during collaborations.
Whereby's pricing model starts at $9.99/month and allows for up to 2,000 user minutes that are renewed monthly.
It charges $0.004 per minute if additional time is needed, making it easy for users to expand their usage. Cloud recording and live streaming features are available for users at $0.01 per minute.
All Whereby accounts come with free email and chat support, which allows users to access technical assistance as required.
So what's the best alternative to TokBox?
Let’s answer that by asking another question — are you tired of video conferencing SDKs that overpromise and underdeliver? Then look no further than Dyte.
With Dyte’s video conferencing SDK, you can create live experiences in under 10 minutes, making it one of the market's most efficient and user-friendly video conferencing tools.
But what if you need additional help or support? The team is ready and waiting to assist you. Click here to connect with them and see what you can build with Dyte.
Don't settle for a video conferencing solution that doesn’t deliver what you need. Instead, start using Dyte and experience the difference today.