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Lightbox

Topic # 165562 13-Feb-2015 13:13
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Hi all,

We've quietly been starting to roll out resume play across our platforms, meaning that any subsequent play of a previously played episode will pick back up where you left off. Currently this has been implemented on Playstation 3/4, Samsung SmartTVs and Android tablets. As soon as the iOS clears the Apple approval, it'll be available there as well. The website player had a minor issue, so we rolled it back and expect to deploy a new version sometime next week.

The functionality works across the platforms where it's been implemented, so a show can be resumed on Playstation after it was watched on Android etc.

We're obviously eager to hear feedback and get reports on any issue you guys might come across with it.

/Jakob





Lightbox - we are online TV.

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Banana?
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  Reply # 1237285 13-Feb-2015 13:41
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Cool, does this mean it only advances to the next show when you have finished the previous one?
What is the 'buffer' zone for finishing a show (ie. if you press stop when the credits start to roll, will the UI know to advance to the next show, or will it be stuck wanting to play the rest of the credits?)



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  Reply # 1237288 13-Feb-2015 13:43
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trig42: Cool, does this mean it only advances to the next show when you have finished the previous one?
What is the 'buffer' zone for finishing a show (ie. if you press stop when the credits start to roll, will the UI know to advance to the next show, or will it be stuck wanting to play the rest of the credits?)


No, we've not touched the episode tee up logic (yet). It's on the todolist, but this was just "remember playback position".




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  Reply # 1237298 13-Feb-2015 13:45
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Awesome work! This is our most wanted feature.

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  Reply # 1239777 16-Feb-2015 10:35
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It's early days yet (as we only watched Lightbox once over the weekend), but here are my initial findings.

It may have destabilised the PS4 app a bit, as it crashed for the first time for us. I submitted the automated incident report, so hopefully your devs will have some data to work with there.

While it does remember playback within a show, when you return to Lightbox to resume viewing, you will be positioned at the next episode in the season. It should really also remember the episode you were watching and return you to there (unless you've finished watching it). This may be related to the crash mentioned above though.

It would be great if it prompted you to resume or start from the beginning, for any shows that have been partially watched.

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  Reply # 1239780 16-Feb-2015 10:40
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Hi - great to hear more development is going into this. It'd be sooo much cooler if the iOS app would allow background streaming so the device could be used for other tasks while watching playback on Apple TV, or if the device could be slept while still streaming (altho' this may be an Apple limitation). Thanks.




Cheers,
Mike

Photographer/Videographer clickmedia.nz


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  Reply # 1239783 16-Feb-2015 10:45
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clicknz: Hi - great to hear more development is going into this. It'd be sooo much cooler if the iOS app would allow background streaming so the device could be used for other tasks while watching playback on Apple TV, or if the device could be slept while still streaming (altho' this may be an Apple limitation). Thanks.


Most definitely. Im going to make the iPad the primary source, as its easier to be viewing than using the PS3. An ability to respond to an email would be great, or other family members to use it 



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  Reply # 1239817 16-Feb-2015 11:10
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dclegg: It's early days yet (as we only watched Lightbox once over the weekend), but here are my initial findings.

It may have destabilised the PS4 app a bit, as it crashed for the first time for us. I submitted the automated incident report, so hopefully your devs will have some data to work with there.

While it does remember playback within a show, when you return to Lightbox to resume viewing, you will be positioned at the next episode in the season. It should really also remember the episode you were watching and return you to there (unless you've finished watching it). This may be related to the crash mentioned above though.

It would be great if it prompted you to resume or start from the beginning, for any shows that have been partially watched.


Cheers.

Yeah, the cue up of next episode will be undergoing some changes, but that's not part of this roll out.




Lightbox - we are online TV.



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  Reply # 1239819 16-Feb-2015 11:11
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clicknz: Hi - great to hear more development is going into this. It'd be sooo much cooler if the iOS app would allow background streaming so the device could be used for other tasks while watching playback on Apple TV, or if the device could be slept while still streaming (altho' this may be an Apple limitation). Thanks.


Agreed and we're (or rather our vendor) is looking at it. 




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  Reply # 1240530 17-Feb-2015 08:33
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dclegg: It's early days yet (as we only watched Lightbox once over the weekend), but here are my initial findings.

It may have destabilised the PS4 app a bit, as it crashed for the first time for us. I submitted the automated incident report, so hopefully your devs will have some data to work with there.


This instability wasn't just a one-off. We tried watching Lightbox last night (on the PS4). It took an absolute age to load, taking a long time to switch from splashscreen to content view. The content view then took an age to populate fully, and it took many seconds to switch to the episode selection screen once we had chosen a show to watch. After pressing play, we waited many seconds, and then the app crashed.

We started up the app again, and it was still a little slow to load, but was better than the first time. But once again, after attempting to play an episode the app crashed after a few seconds. At that point we gave up, and switched to one of our parallel imported services :-(

In both instances, I submitted crash reports via the software prompts.

Next time I'll try the PS3 app and see if that fares any better. But there are definitely serious stability issues with the PS4 one at present.



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  Reply # 1240672 17-Feb-2015 10:52
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dclegg: 
This instability wasn't just a one-off. We tried watching Lightbox last night (on the PS4). It took an absolute age to load, taking a long time to switch from splashscreen to content view. The content view then took an age to populate fully, and it took many seconds to switch to the episode selection screen once we had chosen a show to watch. After pressing play, we waited many seconds, and then the app crashed.

We started up the app again, and it was still a little slow to load, but was better than the first time. But once again, after attempting to play an episode the app crashed after a few seconds. At that point we gave up, and switched to one of our parallel imported services :-(

In both instances, I submitted crash reports via the software prompts.

Next time I'll try the PS3 app and see if that fares any better. But there are definitely serious stability issues with the PS4 one at present.


Hmm. We haven't seen any overall increase in crash reports or error events since we rolled out the update. I'd be interested in hearing whether the issues persist, so please let me know how you get on. 




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  Reply # 1240681 17-Feb-2015 11:09
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Lightbox: 
Hmm. We haven't seen any overall increase in crash reports or error events since we rolled out the update. I'd be interested in hearing whether the issues persist, so please let me know how you get on. 


Will do! Overall we really dig your service, but since this update we've had very little luck with it. But I am motivated to get it back up and running, preferably via the PS4 app if possible.

Feel free to ping me directly if there is any diagnostic information I can offer. We don't have the most ideal setup for SVOD streaming, as we have wifi connectivity to the Apple TV & PS3/PS4 (with the Playstation apps only able to use our 2.4Ghz access point). But it is an infrastructure that generally works well for the parallel imported SVOD services we consume. It should be theoretically possible to get Lightbox up to that level of reliability, especially considering it's the only service consuming local content.

On that note though, I am looking at ways to improve it. While ideally I'd like to have ethernet connectivity to the lounge, this is not something that I can do in the immediate future. I briefly considered (and discarded) the notion of using a wifi repeater, but am wondering if using a Power over Ethernet device may give me better performance. 

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  Reply # 1241308 18-Feb-2015 09:33
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Still no luck for us, with the crash happening again last night when we attempted to watch Lightbox. However, I do have a clue. Diagnostics last night determined our PS4 was only getting download speeds of approximately 800 Kb/s. Currently I can only connect it via our 2.4 Ghz access point (the PS4 doesn't have 5 Ghz support). Our Apple TV uses 5Ghz, which may explain why we can stream Netflix & Hulu when Lightbox struggles.

While the crashes are a new occurrence, having the PS4 struggle with streaming is not (although we probably have about a 75% success rate with it). I'm wondering if the new app doesn't handle poor download performance very well. Prior to this we'd see either picture quality degradation or buffering. But now we're struggling to get playback to even happen without the app crashing.

I am investigating what I can do to resolve this, but unfortunately the best solution of hard wired Ethernet back to the router is not an option right now. Our wired computers usually get around 10Mb/s, so I'm reasonably confident the poor performance is due to 2.4Ghz wifi issues. I'm currently leaning towards Ethernet over Power as a possible solution. Or perhaps reverting back to iPad->Airplay. That's not our ideal setup though, and would mean Lightbox is probably going via UnoTelly DNS, as the ATV is configured for that (it's far too cumbersome to add/remove DNS settings every time we want to switch SVOD providers).

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  Reply # 1241316 18-Feb-2015 09:38
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dclegg: so I'm reasonably confident the poor performance is due to 2.4Ghz wifi issues. I'm currently leaning towards Ethernet over Power as a possible solution..


I use these at home with my PS4.  They work great.




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  Reply # 1241319 18-Feb-2015 09:40
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BigPipeNZ:
dclegg: so I'm reasonably confident the poor performance is due to 2.4Ghz wifi issues. I'm currently leaning towards Ethernet over Power as a possible solution..


I use these at home with my PS4.  They work great.


Thanks for the feedback. Do you know what speeds you get with them (although anything >800Kbps would be a win at this point ;))?

The intent is to get one and connect the PS4 to it. If it works well, I'll get a switch and connect all our other wireless AV equipment.

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  Reply # 1241334 18-Feb-2015 09:54
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dclegg:
BigPipeNZ:
dclegg: so I'm reasonably confident the poor performance is due to 2.4Ghz wifi issues. I'm currently leaning towards Ethernet over Power as a possible solution..


I use these at home with my PS4.  They work great.


Thanks for the feedback. Do you know what speeds you get with them (although anything >800Kbps would be a win at this point ;))?

The intent is to get one and connect the PS4 to it. If it works well, I'll get a switch and connect all our other wireless AV equipment.


I get around 30-35Mbps to the internet via this method (so yes it's plenty for streaming - my broadband connection is a ~45Mbps VDSL).  But a lot will depend on the quality of your internal wiring, which is very much pot luck.

I use this:
http://www.netcommwireless.com/product/powerline/np203

which is discontinued now, but works like a powerline and switch combined. it has 4 ethernet ports in the back. I use it with my PS4, WDLive, Apple TV, and Sony Smart Tv (although I never really use the 'smart' part of the Tv for anything - it's basically a monitor)




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