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Old 08-20-2013, 01:56 PM   #1
takeagabu
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DIAL Support

Does anyone know if it is an open standard and will work with any software? Will we be able to use chromecast software to push youtube and netflix videos? And can we pun the chrome browser? If so, this is going to be huge.
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Old 08-20-2013, 02:04 PM   #2
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Yes DIAL is an open standard. I'm not sure how the TiVo support will work, but it sounds like each app will have to support it so they may not have a generic app capable of doing simple mirroring like the Chromecast. Although it would be pretty awesome if it did.
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Old 08-20-2013, 02:05 PM   #3
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In theory, DIAL should work on the TiVo out of the box with Netflix and YouTube. Both of those apps have DIAL baked in.

I am not aware of any other apps that support DIAL right now but since DIAL is how the Chromecast works, every chromecast that gets sold increases the odds of it working on a Roamio too.
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Old 08-20-2013, 02:25 PM   #4
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Oh! DIAL and Chromecast, now that would be interesting. But wouldn't that negate the need for a Mini?
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Old 08-20-2013, 02:26 PM   #5
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DIAL is slightly different in that it uses an already installed app. Chromecast hosts actually download a HTML5 app from a remote location at runtime. I think many of the communication protocols are the same however.
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Old 08-20-2013, 02:36 PM   #6
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DIAL is slightly different in that it uses an already installed app. Chromecast hosts actually download a HTML5 app from a remote location at runtime. I think many of the communication protocols are the same however.
Chromecast is just DIAL with a chrome browser as the content player for 100% of the content. The browser downloads the HTML5 app and plays it.

I mean, it's still using DIAL to tell the Chromecast "play youtube" and chromecast is going "Ok, I play youtube with (looks) the chrome browser! I'll get on that! Man, I feel like I play everything with the chrome browser..."

DIAL would just tell the TiVo "play youtube" and the TiVo goes "OK! I play Youtube with the YouTube app! I'll get on that!"

That is how DIAL works. You just tell the device what it is you want to play, and the device figures out how to play it.
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Old 08-20-2013, 02:37 PM   #7
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Oh! DIAL and Chromecast, now that would be interesting. But wouldn't that negate the need for a Mini?
No... you don't cast the TiVo to the Chromecast. Chromecast and TiVo are both dial, uh, sources? servers? not sure what the right word is. They are both things you send stuff too.
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Old 08-20-2013, 02:40 PM   #8
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Chromecast is just DIAL with a chrome browser as the content player for 100% of the content. The browser downloads the HTML5 app and plays it.

I mean, it's still using DIAL to tell the Chromecast "play youtube" and chromecast is going "Ok, I play youtube with (looks) the chrome browser! I'll get on that! Man, I feel like I play everything with the chrome browser..."

DIAL would just tell the TiVo "play youtube" and the TiVo goes "OK! I play Youtube with the YouTube app! I'll get on that!"

That is how DIAL works. You just tell the device what it is you want to play, and the device figures out how to play it.
Based on what we've heard it sounds like TiVo does the same thing except it uses a version of Opera instead. But I don't know how the Chrome mirroring thing works with the Chromecast. I'm not sure if it uses standard DIAL protocols or if it's using some proprietary trick of the Chrome browser.
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Old 08-20-2013, 02:46 PM   #9
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Chromecast is just DIAL with a chrome browser as the content player for 100% of the content. The browser downloads the HTML5 app and plays it.

I mean, it's still using DIAL to tell the Chromecast "play youtube" and chromecast is going "Ok, I play youtube with (looks) the chrome browser! I'll get on that! Man, I feel like I play everything with the chrome browser..."

DIAL would just tell the TiVo "play youtube" and the TiVo goes "OK! I play Youtube with the YouTube app! I'll get on that!"

That is how DIAL works. You just tell the device what it is you want to play, and the device figures out how to play it.
Yes. I understand how DIAL works. But I think people shouldn't have expectations that Chromecast apps on mobile devices are going to magically cast to a TiVo.
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Old 08-20-2013, 02:48 PM   #10
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Thanks for the clarification Grakthis
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Old 08-20-2013, 02:51 PM   #11
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Yes. I understand how DIAL works. But I think people shouldn't have expectations that Chromecast apps on mobile devices are going to magically cast to a TiVo.
They will, if it's an app that TiVo recognizes and knows where to direct the request to.

I mean, I agree about managing expectations... it's definitely something good for us to do for people who don't get the technologies.

But between you and I... if Dan is right and the reports are right and the tiVo is running an Opera browser and supports HTML5, there is literally no technological reason why the TiVo can't literally run everything that Chromecast runs and likely the only reason TiVo hasn't jumped in to that as a marketing thing is because the Chromecast SDK isn't even done yet.
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Old 08-20-2013, 02:52 PM   #12
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Yes. I understand how DIAL works. But I think people shouldn't have expectations that Chromecast apps on mobile devices are going to magically cast to a TiVo.
It really depends on how that generic Chromecasting works. If it actually uses DIAL and not some proprietary extension of Chrome then it might.

However it should support casting of YouTube and Netflix out of the box. Both the apps available on iOS/Android and the TiVo apps will support it, so those should work day 1. The only question is if the generic mirroring available on the Chromecast will work with a TiVo or not. I guess we'll see.
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Old 08-20-2013, 02:54 PM   #13
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Based on what we've heard it sounds like TiVo does the same thing except it uses a version of Opera instead. But I don't know how the Chrome mirroring thing works with the Chromecast. I'm not sure if it uses standard DIAL protocols or if it's using some proprietary trick of the Chrome browser.
Yeah, if I were guessing, I think that's proprietary to the chrome browser and not a standard HTML5 thing. I may be wrong, but i wouldn't bet on that feature coming to any other DIAL devices.

But if all the other big dogs start putting together HTML5 apps to support Chromecast, every one of those suddenly becomes a usable thing for a TiVo as well.

And that is a killer app for TiVo. To be able to say "if you can chromecast it, you can DIAL it to a TiVo too." That's compelling.
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:04 PM   #14
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They will, if it's an app that TiVo recognizes and knows where to direct the request to.
AFAIK, Google has to whitelist any apps that want to support it. Since the SDK isn't final, they have yet to do that with any apps (other than Youtube, Netflix, and their own Google Play apps). I think in the future you may see Google try to extend Chromecast to televisions and STBs, but for now, I don't believe we will see any Chromecast support on TiVos for the foreseeable future.
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:08 PM   #15
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The Roamio line supports DIAL out of the box, meaning ANY application that supports DIAL (And has a companion application on the Roamio) will work out of the box with TiVo with no modifications necessary. Netflix and YouTube already work with the Roamio and once Hulu adds DIAL support to their mobile apps, it will likely "Just work" with the TiVo.

The ONLY exception to this rule is "Casting a Chrome Tab", this is something that Google implemented on their own and is not part of the Dial standard. TiVo has suggested that they are open to adding that functionality but are waiting to gauge user demand.
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:25 PM   #16
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The ONLY exception to this rule is "Casting a Chrome Tab", this is something that Google implemented on their own and is not part of the Dial standard. TiVo has suggested that they are open to adding that functionality but are waiting to gauge user demand.
It would be cool. However, while the DIAL API is open, I'm guessing actual Chromecast support will require a license agreement with Google. So I would take what TiVo said with a grain of salt.
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:28 PM   #17
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*fingers crossed for a Plex client*
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:32 PM   #18
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Plex is pretty cool. I used it recently to watch the last season of Top Gear I downloaded from BitTorrent. Worked pretty good and I didn't have to do any conversion to get them on my TiVo like I usually do.
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:34 PM   #19
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AFAIK, Google has to whitelist any apps that want to support it. Since the SDK isn't final, they have yet to do that with any apps (other than Youtube, Netflix, and their own Google Play apps). I think in the future you may see Google try to extend Chromecast to televisions and STBs, but for now, I don't believe we will see any Chromecast support on TiVos for the foreseeable future.
Ok, we're having some several language problems here, and I am not helping things. Let's nail some stuff down, ok?

Chromecast is a device, not a standard or a communication method.

DIAL is the method that chromecast devices use to receive commands to show media.

DIAL is a completed standard, implemented on multiple devices and on multiple apps. I have used DIAL to launch Youtube on other devices.

Chromecast is a device which recieves DIAL commands and directs all of them to the Chrome browser.

Google has released an SDK to make it super easy to send DIAL commands to the Chromecast device. That SDK is not yet final and it is entirely possible (likely? I have not reviewed the sniffed packet data that has since hit the internet) that the Chromecast uses some non-standard DIAL based commands for some of its features. However, none of that would in any way stop TiVo from supporting DIAL for all of the same software that can use DIAL to send commands to a Chromecast.

It would be trivial for, let's say, Pandora, to support TiVo as well as Chromecast for their DIAL protocol, assuming TiVo works by running an Opera Browser. All of the work would be done (The HTML5 interface, the DIAL communications layer, etc) they would just have to correctly sniff the TiVo as a DIAL device and send the correct packets to it.
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:37 PM   #20
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This is the official DIAL specifications website.

http://www.dial-multiscreen.org/
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:42 PM   #21
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Ok, so, i went ahead and read a bit of the DIAL spec just to get an idea of what all Chromecast might be supporting that goes over and above the base DIAL spec.

The Google Cast API includes additional media controls that are NOT part of the DIAL spec.

So, if TiVo wanted to use the Google Cast API to let you control media playback on a TiVo so that app developers could use the Google Cast API to support the TiVo, then yes, they would have to work with Google for this.

However, if TiVo simply wants to support DIAL (which does nothing but launch the app and point it to the correct media) they need no permission from Google, no whitelist, no SDK, nothing. DIAL is a completed and free and open interface.

If you get your Roamio tomorrow, there is no technological reason why, when you pull up your youtube app on your phone, it won't show the Roamio in the list of screens you can play the video on. And when you hit play, it should launch the youtube app on the Roamio and start playing that video.

You will not be able to pause, stop, rewind, etc. from your phone. But you can LAUNCH youtube and play the video.
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:43 PM   #22
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I think it's pretty clear that if TiVo has an app for a service and the companion app for that service on iOS/Android supports DIAL then you'll be able to cast it to the TiVo.

The only question mark is if the whether the Chrome tab mirroring is something standard that TiVo can emulate, or if it's something proprietary to Google. If it's part of the standard then I'm sure TiVo will support it. If it's something Google did specific for the Chromecast then we wont.
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:45 PM   #23
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Chromecast is just DIAL with a chrome browser as the content player for 100% of the content. The browser downloads the HTML5 app and plays it.

I mean, it's still using DIAL to tell the Chromecast "play youtube" and chromecast is going "Ok, I play youtube with (looks) the chrome browser! I'll get on that! Man, I feel like I play everything with the chrome browser..."

DIAL would just tell the TiVo "play youtube" and the TiVo goes "OK! I play Youtube with the YouTube app! I'll get on that!"

That is how DIAL works. You just tell the device what it is you want to play, and the device figures out how to play it.
I own a Chromecast and also a Tivo Premiere.

I thought I'd chime in and clarify some things real quick.

1. ChromeCast does not "require" a Chrome Browser to stream content from applications that support Chromcast (Google's implementation of DIAL).

For example, I'll load Youtube on my Nexus 10 tablet and click on the icon to select the disply, one shows my Chromecast and another shows my Vizio smart TV. I select the chromecast and then click on play, the video is displayed on the TV and I can even "TURN OFF MY TABLET" without interruption to the video.

Works great for NetFlix and is my work around for the craptastic Premiere Netflix app.

So Chromecast on my tablet is like DIAL would just tell the Chromecast "play youtube" and the Chromecast goes "OK! I play Youtube directly from the Youtube web source without a Chrome browser! After all Google 'owns' Youtube and is intimately familiar with the App."


2. Chromecast will work with a Chrome browser on a PC or MAC to stream "any" video content to the Chromecast without a browser boarder on the TV. Thus video content without an "app" can still be used via a Chrome browser.

It's the ability to work directly with the Chrome browser and because it has Chrome in it's name that one is easily confused into thinking it runs everything from an internal Chrome browser on the dongle. In fact on XDA devs, which has rooted the device, it actually runs...... Android. The Chrome is more of a marketing name than to indicate that it runs the Chrome OS on the dongle. Currently I still only see the Chrome OS actually on Chromebooks.

3. Tivo, if they chose to and implemented it using Google's SDK, could even send DIAL video display to the Chromecast device. Likely this won't happen... Why? Because a $35.00 dongle to view Tivo content would be a no brainer in comparision to the Mini's cost. It would cannibalize, thus won't likely be added.

4. If/when I upgrade to the new Roamio, and the DIAL implementation works well and is as broadly supported as the Chromecast feature, I likely won't use the Chromecast anymore. Thus I only am out the $35.00 ($11 actually as I was fortunate to order during the Netflix 3 months promotion and cut that cost from my current subscription) if I find that the Roamio satisfies all my DIAL needs.
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:50 PM   #24
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Ok, we're having some several language problems here, and I am not helping things. Let's nail some stuff down, ok?

Chromecast is a device, not a standard or a communication method.

DIAL is the method that chromecast devices use to receive commands to show media.

DIAL is a completed standard, implemented on multiple devices and on multiple apps. I have used DIAL to launch Youtube on other devices.

Chromecast is a device which recieves DIAL commands and directs all of them to the Chrome browser.

Google has released an SDK to make it super easy to send DIAL commands to the Chromecast device. That SDK is not yet final and it is entirely possible (likely? I have not reviewed the sniffed packet data that has since hit the internet) that the Chromecast uses some non-standard DIAL based commands for some of its features. However, none of that would in any way stop TiVo from supporting DIAL for all of the same software that can use DIAL to send commands to a Chromecast.

It would be trivial for, let's say, Pandora, to support TiVo as well as Chromecast for their DIAL protocol, assuming TiVo works by running an Opera Browser. All of the work would be done (The HTML5 interface, the DIAL communications layer, etc) they would just have to correctly sniff the TiVo as a DIAL device and send the correct packets to it.
I totally agree that TiVo can support DIAL for any app that they approve on the TiVo. However, the Cast API is much more involved than DIAL support. DIAL is only about the communication from client to server. The Cast API defines how the server handles the HTML5 app which is required to be downloaded at runtime.

So if Hulu adds DIAL support to their mobile apps, it doesn't mean it will work on the TiVo because the app on the TiVo will have to be updated to support DIAL. I highly doubt we will ever see that unless Hulu updates the TiVo app to HTML5.

The big feature of the ChromeCast system is that it does not require the server/host to have app installed (aka the ChromeCast doesn't have apps on it). You will probably see a lot of apps like this coming out later this year (like HBO Go). However, with the current setup, TiVo will not support them without an accompanying app on the TiVo.

Just the fact that TiVo supports HTML5 through Opera will probably help move along DIAL support though.
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:51 PM   #25
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I own a Chromecast and also a Tivo Premiere.

I thought I'd chime in and clarify some things real quick.

1. ChromeCast does not "require" a Chrome Browser to stream content from applications that support Chromcast (Google's implementation of DIAL).

For example, I'll load Youtube on my Nexus 10 tablet and click on the icon to select the disply, one shows my Chromecast and another shows my Vizio smart TV. I select the chromecast and then click on play, the video is displayed on the TV and I can even "TURN OFF MY TABLET" without interruption to the video.

Works great for NetFlix and is my work around for the craptastic Premiere Netflix app.

So Chromecast on my tablet is like DIAL would just tell the Chromecast "play youtube" and the Chromecast goes "OK! I play Youtube directly from the Youtube web source without a Chrome browser! After all Google 'owns' Youtube and is intimately familiar with the App."


2. Chromecast will work with a Chrome browser on a PC or MAC to stream "any" video content to the Chromecast without a browser boarder on the TV. Thus video content without an "app" can still be used via a Chrome browser.

It's the ability to work directly with the Chrome browser and because it has Chrome in it's name that one is easily confused into thinking it runs everything from an internal Chrome browser on the dongle. In fact on XDA devs, which has rooted the device, it actually runs...... Android. The Chrome is more of a marketing name than to indicate that it runs the Chrome OS on the dongle. Currently I still only see the Chrome OS actually on Chromebooks.

3. Tivo, if they chose to and implemented it using Google's SDK, could even send DIAL video display to the Chromecast device. Likely this won't happen... Why? Because a $35.00 dongle to view Tivo content would be a no brainer in comparision to the Mini's cost. It would cannibalize, thus won't likely be added.

4. If/when I upgrade to the new Roamio, and the DIAL implementation works well and is as broadly supported as the Chromecast feature, I likely won't use the Chromecast anymore. Thus I only am out the $35.00 ($11 actually as I was fortunate to order during the Netflix 3 months promotion and cut that cost from my current subscription) if I find that the Roamio satisfies all my DIAL needs.
You're appear to either be misunderstanding a lot of things or you're just way over your head here.

The Chromecast (device) has a chrome browser in it. That browser loads HTML5 apps. Those apps do not show a border around them because they run as full screen apps. No one said a word about ChromeOS. We said Chrome browser. Just like I have a chrome browser on my android phone and tablet. No one said anything about it loading a chrome browser on your phone/tablet. It loads a chrome browser on the chromecast.

Saying the Chromecast runs android is a bit shady. It's closer to GoogleTV, which is branched from android. It's not entirely untrue, but it's not accurate either. It does not run the version of android my phone runs, though they share a common core.

BTW, it is called a Chromecast because it loads everything in a chrome browser. I.E. the Chromecast is an OS and a web browser. pew pew.
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:51 PM   #26
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I think it's pretty clear that if TiVo has an app for a service and the companion app for that service on iOS/Android supports DIAL then you'll be able to cast it to the TiVo.

The only question mark is if the whether the Chrome tab mirroring is something standard that TiVo can emulate, or if it's something proprietary to Google. If it's part of the standard then I'm sure TiVo will support it. If it's something Google did specific for the Chromecast then we wont.
Chrome Tab Mirroring is just a desktop Chrome Extension that sends compressed images to the Chrome Browser on the ChromeCast that "plays" them. It's not proprietary in the sense that the code is secret, but if Google wrote the extension in a way that allows for generic DIAL receivers to decode the information we're golden. The only difference between the TiVo DIAL implementation and the ChromeCast DIAL implementaion is the user of Opera on TiVo and Chrome on the ChromeCast.
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:55 PM   #27
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I could see that being supported by a specific app in this "futher app store"

Should't be that hard to implement 3rd party...
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:56 PM   #28
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Exactly, and that's the unknown part. My guess is that it will not work with the Chrome tab mirroring. But I'd be pleasantly surprised if it did.
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:57 PM   #29
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I totally agree that TiVo can support DIAL for any app that they approve on the TiVo. However, the Cast API is much more involved than DIAL support. DIAL is only about the communication from client to server. The Cast API defines how the server handles the HTML5 app which is required to be downloaded at runtime.
Well, i know the Chromecast has been sniffed and we know the data it sends back and forth. And I know it has control messages it sends. So we know it is at least SOMEWHAT more complicated than DIAL. But saying it is "much" more involved is premature. I mean, it might be? How do you know? Have you seen the core protocol? I have not.

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So if Hulu adds DIAL support to their mobile apps, it doesn't mean it will work on the TiVo because the app on the TiVo will have to be updated to support DIAL. I highly doubt we will ever see that unless Hulu updates the TiVo app to HTML5.
No. This is just not true. The Hulu app would not need to be updated at all. The TiVo has to be updated to know, when it receives a command to play Hulu video, where it should direct that command. The Hulu app does not need to know ANYTHING about that.

Imagine DIAL is a guy with a note pad. He comes to my house and knocks on my door and says "watch Sons of Anarchy tonight" and then turns around and leaves. He does not know or care HOW i watch sons of anarchy. He doesn't know where my remote is, or what channel it's on. He has simply delivered the command. My TV does not need to be updated to speak to this man with notepads. I do that. Then i control my TV.

That is how DIAL works.

So, TiVo could allow a DIAL command for Hulu to launch either the existing Hulu app (ugh) OR it could send the command to an Opera browser which would then load an HTML5 app that Hulu wrote that plays the video.

The issue there, however, becomes "how do you control playback?" And the answer right now is "well, oops, that sucks."

Quote:
The big feature of the ChromeCast system is that it does not require the server/host to have app installed (aka the ChromeCast doesn't have apps on it). You will probably see a lot of apps like this coming out later this year (like HBO Go). However, with the current setup, TiVo will not support them without an accompanying app on the TiVo.
That's all true. Do you know why the Chromecast does not need to have an app installed? Because it has the One True App(tm). A web browser. That web browser runs HTML5 apps downloaded and run in real time.

Which is exactly what the Roamio has.

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Just the fact that TiVo supports HTML5 through Opera will probably help move along DIAL support though.
*nods*
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Old 08-20-2013, 03:58 PM   #30
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Chrome Tab Mirroring is just a desktop Chrome Extension that sends compressed images to the Chrome Browser on the ChromeCast that "plays" them. It's not proprietary in the sense that the code is secret, but if Google wrote the extension in a way that allows for generic DIAL receivers to decode the information we're golden. The only difference between the TiVo DIAL implementation and the ChromeCast DIAL implementaion is the user of Opera on TiVo and Chrome on the ChromeCast.
It can't be that simple because it also supports audio. it has to be a little more complex than simply taking screen caps and sending them over HTTP.
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