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Call Types

The Video SDK uses a set of pre-defined call types that come with different default permissions and feature configurations. Depending on your use case you can also extend those and use custom types that suit your needs.

Let's start with some clarification on naming.

Call Type: 4 default call types come with a set of pre-defined user roles and capabilities that are assigned to these roles. These default types can be used but it's also possible to define custom call types via the dashboard.

User Role: Users can have different roles (note: one user can have multiple roles). Again, there are pre-defined user roles that each come with a certain set of capabilities. You can use the existing user roles or define custom ones via the dashboard.

Call Capabilities: Each participant of a call has certain capabilities (such as send-video or end-call). These are associated with a certain user role. The associations can be found further below and can also be customized via the dashboard.

Call Types

There are 4 pre-defined call types, these are:

  • default: simple 1-1 calls for larger group video calling with sensible defaults
  • audio_room: pre-configured for a workflow around requesting permissions in audio settings (speaking, etc.)
  • livestream: access to calls is granted to all authenticated users, useful in one-to-many settings (such as livestreaming)
  • development: should only be used for testing, permissions are open and everything is enabled (use carefully)

Before we go into more detail about what the different call types are for, let's take a look at some of the concrete permissions and settings that each call type comes with.

Each call type comes with a set of settings. One important concept is called backstage. It means that calls can be created but not directly joined. That means you can schedule a call. It would then have backstage enabled until you call goLive() with it.

Now, let's take a look at each of the call types in more detail.


The development call type has all the permissions enabled and can be used during development. It's not recommended to use this call type in production, since all the participants in the calls would be able to do everything (blocking, muting everyone, etc).

For these call types, backstage is not enabled, therefore you don't have to explicitly call goLive for the call to be started.


The default call type can be used for different video-calling apps, such as 1-1 calls, group calls, or meetings with multiple people. Both video and audio are enabled, and backstage is disabled. It has permissions settings in place, where admins and hosts have elevated permissions over other types of users.


The default type can be used in apps that use regular video calling. To learn more try our tutorial on building a video calling app.

Audio Room

The audio_room call type is suitable for apps like Clubhouse or Twitter Spaces. It has a pre-configured workflow around requesting permissions to speak for regular listeners. Backstage is enabled, and new calls are going into backstage mode when created. You will need to explicitly call the goLive method to make the call active for all participants.


You can find out how to handle this and build an application with our Audio Room tutorial.


The livestream call type is configured to be used for live streaming apps. Access to calls is granted to all authenticated users, and backstage is enabled by default.


To build an example application for this you can take a look at our live streaming tutorial.

Call type settings

Each call comes with a number of settings. Depending on the type of call these are enabled or disabled.


You can see a full table of which call type has which setting enabled in the next chapter.

First, we'll describe the different settings that exist in different categories.


Setting NameTypeDescription
access_request_enabledBooleanWhen true users that do not have permission to this feature can request access for it
opus_dtx_enabledBooleanWhen true OPUS DTX is enabled
redundant_coding_enabledBooleanWhen true redundant audio transmission is enabled
mic_default_onBooleanWhen true the user will join with the microphone enabled by default
speaker_default_onBooleanWhen true the user will join with the audio turned on by default
default_deviceString speaker or earpieceThe default audio device to use


Setting NameTypeDescription
enabledBooleanWhen backstage is enabled, calls will be in backstage mode when created and can be joined by users only after goLive is called


Setting NameTypeDescription
enabledBooleanDefines whether video is enabled for the call
access_request_enabledBooleanWhen true users that do not have permission to this feature can request access for it
camera_default_onBooleanWhen true, the camera will be turned on when joining the call
camera_facingString front, back or externalWhen applicable, the camera that should be used by default
target_resolutionTarget Resolution ObjectThe ideal resolution that video publishers should send

The target resolution object is an advanced resolution. Changing this from the default values can lead to poor performance. This is how you define it:

Setting NameTypeDescription
widthNumberThe width in pixels
heightNumberThe height in pixels
bitrateNumberThe bitrate


Setting NameTypeDescription
enabledBooleanDefines whether screensharing is enabled
access_request_enabledBooleanWhen true users that do not have permission to this feature can request access for it


Setting NameTypeDescription
modeString available, disabled or auto-onavailable → recording can be requested
disabled → recording is disabled
auto-on → recording starts and stops automatically when one or multiple users join the call
qualityString audio-only, 360p, 480p, 720p, 1080p, 1440pDefines the resolution of the recording
audio_onlybooleanIf true the recordings will only contain audio
layoutobject, for more information see the API docsConfiguration options for the recording application


Setting NameTypeDescription
enabledBooleanDefines whether broadcasting is enabled
hlsHLS Settings (object)Settings for HLS broadcasting

HLS Settings

Setting NameTypeDescription
enabledBooleanDefines whether HLS is enabled or not
auto_onBooleanWhen true HLS streaming will start as soon as users join the call
quality_tracksString audio-only, 360p, 480p, 720p, 1080p, 1440pThe tracks to publish for the HLS stream (up to three tracks)


Setting NameTypeDescription
namesList of one or more of these strings european_union, iran_north_korea_syria_exclusion, china_exclusion, russia_exclusion, belarus_exclusion, india, united_states, canadaThe list of geofences that are used for the calls of these type

More information can be found in the API docs.


Setting NameTypeDescription
modeString available, disabled or auto-onNot implemented yet
closed_caption_modeStringNot implemented yet


Setting NameTypeDescription
incoming_call_timeout_msNumberDefines how long the SDK should display the incoming call screen before discarding the call (in ms)
auto_cancel_timeout_msNumberDefines how long the caller should wait for others to accept the call before canceling (in ms)

Push Notifications Settings

Setting NameTypeDescription
call_live_startedEvent Notification Settings ObjectThe notification settings used for call_live_started events
session_startedEvent Notification Settings ObjectThe notification settings used for session_started events
call_notificationEvent Notification Settings ObjectThe notification settings used for call_notification events
call_ringEvent Notification Settings ObjectThe notification settings used for call_ring events

In order to define the event notification settings object, here is the structure of how it should look:

Setting NameTypeDescription
enabledBooleanWhether this object is enabled
apnsAPNS Settings ObjectThe settings for APN notifications

APNS Settings Object

Remote notifications can only be customized if your application implements a Notification Service Extension. For simple customizations, you can change the title and body fields at the call type level. Both title and body fields are handlebars templates with call and user objects available in their scope.

Setting NameTypeDescription
titleTemplateThe string template for the title field of the notification
bodyTemplateThe string template for the body field of the notification

Defaults for call type settings

target_resolutionN/AWidth: 2560
Height 1440
Bitrate 5000000
Width: 1920
Height: 1080
Bitrate 3000000
Width: 1920
Height 1080
Bitrate 3000000

User roles

There are 5 pre-defined user roles, these are:

  • user
  • moderator
  • host
  • admin
  • call-member

As mentioned before each user role is associated with a set of call capabilities. You can access the default roles and their capabilities in the Stream Dashboard.

In general, it makes sense to have a solid setup of roles as it makes handling permissions and requests easier.

Call Capabilities

A capability defines the actions that a certain user is allowed to perform on a call. There are many different available (see a full list in the next chapter). Each user has a certain set of capabilities attached to them. You can change these default capabilities in the dashboard. It is also possible to dynamically change these.

That means that if a user has permission to assign new capabilities they can assign them to other users. This is our approach to an effective permission system.


If you want to learn more about doing this, head over to the Permissions and Capabilities chapter.

Default call capabilities

When a call is fetched from the API by a user, the response includes the list of actions that the user is allowed to perform on the call.

These are the following:

  • join-call
  • read-call
  • create-call
  • join-ended-call
  • join-backstage
  • update-call
  • update-call-settings
  • screenshare
  • send-video
  • send-audio
  • start-record-call
  • stop-record-call
  • start-broadcast-call
  • stop-broadcast-call
  • end-call
  • mute-users
  • update-call-permissions
  • block-users
  • create-reaction
  • pin-for-everyone
  • remove-call-member
  • start-transcription-call
  • stop-transcription-call

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