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PlayOn app for Smart TVs using Yahoo Connected TV Apps

Request:  Please develop a PlayOn app (like the Roku PlayOn channel) for Smart TVs that use Yahoo Connected TV Apps (like Vizio, Samsung, etc.)

Background:

Lots of Smart TVs use Yahoo Connected TV Apps (Amazon, Pandora, Facebook, etc, all have Yahoo Connected TV apps).  However, not all of these smart TVs support DLNA.  As a result, I can't watch my PlayOn/PlayLater on this TV.  

This seems pretty doable, since the preferred streaming content method for the Yahoo Connected TV apps is 

MP4/H.264/AAC — Recommended

  • Container: MP4 (mpeg4)
  • Codec: H.264
  • Audio: AAC
(ref: http://developer.yahoo.com/connectedtv/devguide )  Isn't this the format that PlayLater stores it's recordings as?  From a quick 15 minute look over of the Yahoo Connected TV apps dev guide and API, it looks like the biggest challenge is likely to be that the Yahoo Connected TV Apps use Javascript, and [I assume] PlayOn uses DLNA/UPnP at it's heart.  Javascript doesn't support the discovery/eventing that DLNA/UPnP uses.  So to overcome this, it will likely need some addition to the PlayOn Server code to allow an SSL connection from a Javascript client for the exchange of non-streaming data (which will likely have to have the PlayOn Server IP address explicitly entered into the Smart TV app).  As well as passing metadata information in JSON instead of XML.  Perhaps there is a more elegant solution, but this is what the challenges appear to me, based on first look.
This suggestion was mentioned on the Playon forums a while back:
And Skip from PlayOn said it seemed unlikely, but I don't agree with his assessment.  I would think that PlayOn would want to reach out to users that don't want a separate device connected to the TV (like a Roku box), when their TV already does Netflix, HuluPlus, Crackle, etc. natively.  Adding PlayOn to the TV would make it complete (at least from my opinion).  I believe it's technically achievable (as noted above), non-trivial, but doable -- and it would greatly be appreciated by your customers.
Thanks!
--Eric

2 comments

  • 0
    Avatar
    PlayOn Support (Chris)

    We appreciate the information and details! We do not have any plans to develop any apps for these TVs. It's not something that would be possible to do at this time, but might be possible as TV apps evolve.

  • 0
    Avatar
    Frank Schiavone

    I just purchased a 60" Smart Vizio from Costco.  I can run Playon through DNLA but its super slow.  Is this because Playon is not a native app like how it runs on Roku or is it a hardware deficiency in the TV itself.  Most local files seem to run OK but the PlayOn channels tend to be impossible to play or super slow.  My XBox and Roku 2 still seem to be the best streamers with my Cirago coming in a very close 3rd.  I'll have to try a Roku 3 and see if that's a better device, but I would still love to see PlayOn run natively on the Vizio.

     

    Just curious.

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