JW Player SDK for iOS & Android 2.2 – TV Casting, DVR, CEA-608, Offline Playback

The JW Player mobile team has been hard at work to build the top developer-requested features for the JW Player SDK for iOS and Android, which are native video frameworks that enable publishers to stream video in their mobile apps.

In this update, I will highlight four of these high-demand features that our latest JW Player SDKs for both iOS & Android now support: TV casting, DVR live streaming, CEA-608 captions, and offline playback.

Read on for more details!

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TV Casting

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Lean back, pick your favorite online videos from your mobile app, and watch them on a big screen TV.  JW Player SDK 2.2 for Android & iOS make it super easy for mobile app developers to give this casting experience to their users.

 

JW Player SDK for Android 2.2 gives developers a simple, out-of-the-box ability to search for available Chromecast devices and wirelessly cast videos from their mobile app to any selected Chromecast device. We currently support HLS adaptive streams and MP4 progressive videos and viewers will be able to pause, play, seek, and control playback from the mobile app.

 

JW Player SDK for iOS 2.2 supports casting to Chromecast devices just like the Android SDK, but with iOS we also make it easy for developers to enable viewers to wirelessly stream content using AirPlay and control playback directly from the iOS app to any AirPlay enabled device (for example Apple TV).

 

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DVR Live Streaming

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Did you miss that 90-yard pick-six touchdown interception while grabbing chips and dip from the kitchen?  Did you want to replay that improvised guitar solo from your favorite artist at a concert streamed live from London?  We all know and love the virtues of DVR live streaming and the ability to pause and rewind a live video broadcast. This feature is a must-have for businesses that specialize in live events.  JW Player SDK for iOS and Android 2.2 now both support DVR functionality in HLS live streams so developers can offer their app users the ability to pause & rewind for HLS live video streams; our Android SDK additionally supports DVR for MPEG-DASH streams.

CEA-608 Captions

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Larger media companies that stream video online may also have more traditional television broadcasting roots and sometimes use an analog closed caption standard known as CEA-608 (line 21 captions) for the hearing impaired.  Essentially these “in-band” captions are inserted into the actual video stream, which differ from “out-of-band” captions that are external files and adhere to formats like WebVTT.

 

The JW Player SDK for iOS and Android both now support in-band 608 captions inserted into HLS streams, which is great news for mobile developers creating apps for large media companies with broadcasting standards that require this type of closed captions.

Offline Playback

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Many mobile developers create apps meant to be used while online or offline, such as in urban cities with underground subways, in airplanes, or when taking long trips between locations with no cellular network or WiFi.  For example, imagine an educational app that allows students to watch video-based lessons even when the app is offline to prevent distractive browsing.

The JW Player mobile SDKs now support the ability to play MP4 video files stored locally on iOS and Android devices.  Just point JW Player to where the MP4 file is located on the device and we’ll start playing it whether it’s online or offline.

 

Additional Features in JW Player SDK 2.2

JW Player SDK for iOS (full release notes)

  • In-Manifest WebVTT subtitles for HLS

JW Player SDK for Android (full release notes)

  • In-Manifest WebVTT subtitles for HLS & MPEG-DASH
  • VAST 3.0 Non-Linear Ads

This release also includes numerous bug fixes, please visit the release notes for more details.

 

Where do I download the latest JW Player SDKs?

If you are an existing JW Player SDK customer, you can sign in to your JW Player Dashboard and download the latest SDK packages from your Account tab.  Otherwise, if you’d like more information to purchase or get a free trial of our SDKs to build a native iOS or Android video player, please visit our Mobile SDK page.

Do you have a feature suggestion for our SDKs? Your feedback is welcome and encouraged as we continue to improve and enhance the JW Player SDKs for Android & iOS with regular feature and performance updates!

 

Henry Lee,

Product Manager, Mobile Devices