Big Screen Blog

Media Center, Windows Phone7 + Silverlight Goodness..

Updated – Big Screen EPG by Remote v0.5e

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Last night I released an update to ‘by Remote’ which has a few new fixes – plus an early preview of the iPhone/iPad browser based access. The changes were all done on the inbuilt server (actual Silverlight UI changes/fixes will appear in next version).

The new release is available from the same download page you got v0.5d from.

The fixes for v0.5e include :

  • Authentication problems fixed – in v0.5d it kept asking for your username/password – now this is working properly (and your authentication information is retained for entire session).
  • Media Center Recording Defaults observed – when scheduling series and one time recordings it now uses the ‘recording defaults’ you’ve set in Media Center (including pre/post padding, channel, language, keep until and repeat settings). There’s also an switch (in the config) which allows you to override the ‘Where Possible’ post padding setting with an actual Hard padding (which is an annoying limitation in 7MC) – ie. when enabled if you had ‘Where Possible – Stop after 30 minutes’ this will be translated to ‘Stop after 30 minutes’.
  • Channel Sorting by Display Channel Number – when using the Silverlight UI – channels are now sorted by the Display Channel Number so it should directly reflect the channel order you have in 7MC (which is most important for US users and people with loads of channels). However note that it’s not yet observing the ‘sort by channel name’ guide option if you are using that (hopefully will implement this in future version).

Also new in this version is a ‘preview’ of the iPhone/iPad browser access (so you can use it on a mobile phone instead of Silverlight) – which offers the Sliding Menu system you see in native iPhone Apps (emulated by javascript/css features available on Safari). Currently this preview is ‘read-only’ – and you can’t actually set or manipulate recordings – however these functions will be implemented on future versions. I will enhance this to support straight XHTML mobile access for future releases (so you can get some joy on other mobile devices) – however I felt getting the iPhone preview version out was a good place to start figuring out the best page flow for mobiles.  If you don’t have an iPhone (and of course noone yet has an iPad) – you can still have a peek at this by loading up Safari/Firefox/Chrome on your PC or Mac Desktop (afik – this wont render properly on IE as that doesn’t support WebKit).

EDIT : Just realized that this Mobile UI may work on quite a few more mobile devices than just iPhone/iPad – as it’s based on WebKit. I don’t actually have any for testing (need to dig up some emulators). Hence – I suspect this UI might all work properly already on Android, Nokia S40/S60, WebOS and RIM devices. (Pretty certain it wont work on Win Mobile however).

Here’s some screenshots below of the new iPhone UI –

 mainmenu   proginfo   nowshowing

 bychannel   Layer_5    scheduled 

Also – some news that some people will be excited about – is that I’ve also figured out and succesfully tested streaming of live recorded tv (from WTV files) from the by Remote server to the Silverlight client (and hopefully to iPhone as it can stream to h264 as well). There’s quite a bit of work to get this all going in a nice clean way – and currently it chews up quite a bit of memory. I’m also unclear about potential restrictions for protected content (in Australia our DVB-T wtv files don’t have any playback restrictions) – so need to do a bit of testing with some US recorded TV content – which may perhaps be not doable. I hope to roll out this feature sometime in the future (but unlikely to be in the short term).

Big thanks to all the users who have been sending in feedback for the initial release (and helped catch some of these bugs) – and enjoy this new one..

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Written by mobilewares

March 1, 2010 at 9:49 pm

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