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Thread: ChromeCast/GoogleCast support!

  1. #1
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    Wink ChromeCast/GoogleCast support!

    So there's an SDK and the BeyondPod team already responded to me quite quick about it, here's what they sent me:



    This is great news! Especially that the SDK looks 'reasonable' to implement.

    I wanted to make a thread about it to sort of flesh out my idea of how ChromeCast could be used.

    For those living under a rock (j/k), here is what it is and how it works.

    Basically what I would like to be able to do is listen to a podcast in my car, and when I walk into my house I'd like to click the ChromeCast button to push it automatically to my TV. And if I am listening on my TV, I'd like to retrieve the feed and playback position from the TV back to my phone when I leave.

    *I download my podcasts locally to my phone and listen to them. I'd like it if when I use chromecast to push it to the TV, that it switches to streaming it from the web directly instead of off my actual device so it doesn't kill my phone battery pushing the media. On the flip side, when I retrieve it from my TV back to my phone, I'd like it to switch from the stream to my locally saved podcast while maintaining playback position. That may be tricky to implement though, opposed to just pushing direct streams. For me though, on Sprint, streaming a podcast on the go is just not an option as I'm constantly being dropped from 4G to 3G where I live, and the 3G on Sprint is famously terrible. That's why I have to download them locally instead of streaming.

    I'm very excited about this coming to BeyondPod

  2. #2
    BeyondPod Team
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    Quote Originally Posted by cabbiebot View Post
    Basically what I would like to be able to do is listen to a podcast in my car, and when I walk into my house I'd like to click the ChromeCast button to push it automatically to my TV. And if I am listening on my TV, I'd like to retrieve the feed and playback position from the TV back to my phone when I leave.
    From my understanding of ChromeCast (gleaned mostly from reading on the internet and listening to discussions on various podcasts), that's pretty much how it's designed to work. I'm in the UK, so I don't have one to play with yet.

    I download my podcasts locally to my phone and listen to them. I'd like it if when I use chromecast to push it to the TV, that it switches to streaming it from the web directly instead of off my actual device so it doesn't kill my phone battery pushing the media.
    Again, that's how it's designed to work. The requesting app provides a URL and a playback position to ChromeCast, and ChromeCast streams the media from that URL. A connection is established between your device and the ChromeCast dongle to handle handshaking / position tracking etc., but you are NOT sending the media data from your device. In fact, you can't send local content to ChromeCast (unless you can fool ChromeCast into seeing your local content as a URL). While your podcast is playing, BeyondPod on your device can be in the background, and you can do other things on your device; the ChromeCast player (dongle) handles the playing. It just uses the connection with the sending device to report back current position, etc.

    The gotcha here (which is beyond BP's control) is that not all podcast servers respond well to resuming playback at a given point. BP can always request it, but the server may or may not honour the request accurately. That bit is up to the feed content provider to set up correctly on their servers. However, if the feed already handles streaming well, it should also do so when used with ChromeCast.

    On the flip side, when I retrieve it from my TV back to my phone, I'd like it to switch from the stream to my locally saved podcast while maintaining playback position. That may be tricky to implement though, opposed to just pushing direct streams. For me though, on Sprint, streaming a podcast on the go is just not an option as I'm constantly being dropped from 4G to 3G where I live, and the 3G on Sprint is famously terrible. That's why I have to download them locally instead of streaming.
    Once more, that's how I would expect it to work (i.e. once you're no longer Casting, it will simply resume playback on your device in the normal way (i.e. use the local copy on your device if you have one, or stream if you were streaming it anyway), subject to the stream reporting back its current position accurately when paused, of course.

    Julie

  3. #3
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    well, then that sounds fantastic can't wait!

    any particular podcast servers that don't play nicely with playback resumption? Please don't say whoever the TWiT network uses! (i think its podtrac)

  4. #4
    BeyondPod Team
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    The ones that people complain about in the forum
    I don't think I've come across anybody complaining about TWiT ones though. They're big enough to make sure their servers work properly. And if they don't now, I'd argue that they're interested enough in ChromeCast to make sure they do soon if you report it to them.

    It's easy enough to test, though. Just start streaming a non-downloaded TWiT podcast while you're on your home network. Pause it, and come back to it later to see whether it resumes (roughly) where you left off (taking into account your BeyondPod Replay on Resume setting). I wouldn't necessarily expect to-the-second accuracy, but it should be within a few seconds.

    Julie

  5. #5
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    That's awesome! I am also looking forward to Chromecast integration! Let me know if you would like to get your hands on a Chromecast device.

  6. #6
    BeyondPod Team
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    Thank you, but one is already crossing the Atlantic, heading in my direction ;-)

  7. #7
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    We started looking into what will it take to support Chromecast. At first glance it looks like it is relatively straight forward to add Chromecast support, but as always the devil is in the details. From my limited experience it supports only a small number of codecs so it will be able to stream only the most popular audio/video formats (here is what is supported out of the box).

    My biggest concern is that (regardless the initial excitement) it may not get enough traction to support future development. Unfortunately Google does not have a very good track record when it comes to releasing a hardware related products - not many Google TV, Nexus Q or even Chrome books devices out there. Let's hope that this one is different.

  8. #8
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    I am so excited about the CC, and mine hasn't even arrived yet. And I'm so excited about the potential of inegrating CC support into BP, I registered and posted for the first time on here just to make my voice heard!

    Please PLEASE add CC support to BP - it will be a killer use-case.

    Another feature idea:

    If handing off a podcast that has both audio and video feeds available, set it up so that BP will (optionally and automatically) pass the VIDEO feed of the podcast to the CC, even if you are listening to the audio feed on your device. And then after disconnecting from CC, BP picks the audio-only feed (whether streaming or local) back up where the video stream left off.
    Last edited by Ricyteach; 07-29-2013 at 03:26 PM.

  9. #9
    BeyondPod Team
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ricyteach View Post
    Another feature idea:

    If handing off a podcast that has both audio and video feeds available, set it up so that BP will (optionally and automatically) pass the VIDEO feed of the podcast to the CC, even if you are listening to the audio feed on your device. And then after disconnecting from CC, BP picks the audio-only feed (whether streaming or local) back up where the video stream left off.
    That's already been requested in connection with Episode Sync (syncing between BeyondPod on multiple devices), but there's no way for BP to associate a video podcast with its equivalent audio version, because the feeds are separate.

    Julie

  10. #10
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    Then allow user to associate the feeds manually. Associate the individual episodes by date. Simple, right?

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