Treo Video Streaming Coming Soon...
Fairly hidden among all of the announcements at the PalmSource DevCon last week was Kinoma’s live audio and video streaming demo (RTSP) (from a small webcam in their booth at the conference) directly to a LifeDrive and a Treo.
I was not familiar with it before but “RTSP is the streaming media network protocol mandated by the 3GPP cellular phone industry consortium for delivery of streaming audio and video to mobile phones”.
The Treo image on the right shows a pre-recorded news stream (mpeg4 video & AAC audio) while the picture of the LifeDrive in my hand below actually shows me standing (light shirt) opposite the webcam and taking the snap. In this particular case the Treo was streaming over a Sprint PCS data connection while the LifeDrive was connecting via a local WiFi network over 802.11b.
There is no question that the quality of the video in both instances was excellent and miles ahead of the choppy video playback that I have previously seen with either MobiTV or Packet Video (I have yet to test Verizon’s VCast service). More importantly it is the first streaming service that I have seen work with the Treo (even though I understand that MMPlayer have also developed streaming functionality).
Please note that in both instances the streaming video is viewed using an unreleased version of Kinoma Player 3EX. The company anticipates that it will release the RTSP enabled version of the player later this year (probably Q4) after which time all Treonauts will be able to enjoy streaming audio and video from the growing number of content providers who are delivering digital media using RTSP.
So, the technology is now available to allow some enterprising individuals or companies to go out and develop services to deliver video and audio content to our Treo. Considering that services seem to be propping up left, right and center for all other standard cell phones with only stamp sized screens I’m really hoping that someone will pick up the challenge and show off all the great stuff that you can do with a Treo instead.
As you know, I have been watching the entire digital entertainment convergence space attentively for the last couple of years particularly with regards to TV and filmed entertainment (for example trying to launch Netflix and TiVo in the UK) and I am extremely curious to see how things will evolve in this space particularly with respect to our Treo.
Two extremely interesting articles point to many of the things that are likely to take place. The first in Strategy+Business by Luigi Pugliese entitled “I Want my DTT (Digital Terrestrial Television)” describes how:
“Using DTT platforms, media companies will be able to deliver entertainment or information on new dual-mode handsets that recognize both mobile phone and DTT technical standards. In effect, these handsets will let media companies bypass traditional mobile technology. Consequently, cellular companies, which have been counting on new entertainment and data applications to increase revenue, could find that their forecasts and business plans are flawed.
DTT is a far more efficient transmission protocol for mobile entertainment than cellular networks, because it is capable of delivering content to millions of individual connections at once without network interference or overload. For instance, tens of thousands of people in a football stadium could simultaneously and reliably access DTT-provided data or entertainment through a mobile device, whereas a cellular network would be too congested to handle a load even 1/1000th that size.”
The above becomes particularly interesting when you consider PalmSource’s announcement that future versions of the PalmOS based on Linux will include DVB-H – the mobile standard for receiving DTT transmissions.
The second article in a Forbes cover story entitled “It’s Cellevision!” is an in-depth report on the many players that are positioning for supremacy and opportunities in this emerging mobile entertainment space.
Although we have been able to enjoy the benefits of rich mobile entertainment on our Treo for some time now, it appears that others are suddenly coming to the realisation that the ubiquitous cell phone has the potential to “become something even bigger – a futuristic entertainment system and the most exciting new tech platform since the internet”.
As I have pointed out repeatedly with my own Treo experiences, the article notes that: “Someday, the cell phone might be so good that you throw out your iPod, your laptop and your BlackBerry” and “Carriers are beginning to see the benefits of the superphone”. As the best “superphone” around, our Treo should therefore continue to do quite well and will undoubtedly boost the fortunes of both PalmSource and palmOne in the future.…
Treonauts are at the forefront of change…