One of the hot topics these days is accessing your home media through mobile devices. There has been much talk about remote apps for android and iphones from large companies like google (google tv), samsung, sky, hbo and many others. Open Source doesn't sleep and so our friends at xbmc also created an android remote control app.
Since I am developing one of the mobile solutions (aMPdroid) for MediaPortal and have kept close track of everything "mobile" going on in the MediaPortal community, I thought it would be a good idea to write a few words about what is already possible with MediaPortal when it comes to mobile access and what is coming in the near future:
Most MediaPortal enthusiasts love browsing the forums to find the latest updates to their plugins, discuss tweaks and help improve MediaPortal. A few weeks back our web-guru high has enabled Tapatalk support for our forums. Tapatalk is an app ( for iPhone, Android, webOS, Windows Phone 7, BlackBerry and Nokia smartphone devices) that let's you conveniently read through forum.team-mediaportal.com on your mobile.
For mobile phones with small screen there is also the little-known mobile version of the forums which can be accessed via http://forum.team-mediaportal.com/?styleid=4
Even better, our next-gen forum software (don't want to spoil too much) will have support for tapatalk as well as forumrunner.
Media Portal Mobile Access
Now that you got your daily fix of MediaPortal news and gossip in the forums, let's move on to ways on how to access your MediaPortal installation on your mobiles.
PiMP is a web interface for MediaPortal specifically designed for any Smartphone or device that uses a webkit based browser (e.g. iPhone, Android, WP7, etc.). You can even use iPimp with your desktop browsers, although the design is targeted at smaller screen resolutions.
iPimp is developed by the community member cheezey, who regulary provides fixes and updates since october 2008.
Here's a small subset of the many features that iPimp offers:
- Access EPG information
- Scheduling of Recordings
Streaming (live tv, recordings, tv-series, ...) to iphone (http streaming) and non-iphone (silverlight, flash) devices with transcoding
- Client control (remote control, now playing, send messags, ...)
- Power options (Sleep, Wake on Lan, ...)
This youtube video (german commentary) is also giving a nice overview on the capabilities of iPimp.
If you want to have access to your MediaPortal machine from any mobile webbrowser without installing any extra software, iPimp is the logical choice. For more information, visit the iPimp project page or the forum section.
Contrary to iPimp, aMPdroid is a native app for android devices. This comes with many advantages: It's more responsive, can cache data offline, use native ui elements and take advantage of android services (background-downloading, notifications, etc.). Of course this also means that it will only work on android phones and you have to install an app. The good news: You can install both... ;)
With aMPdroid you can browse your media collection, use your android phone as a remote control and manage your tv server.
A few features of aMPdroid:
- Files, Videos, Series and Movies
- Different Views: Text, Poster, Thumb, Banner
- Download (and then play) items to mobile, Play on pc
- Remote control keys (with key-down/key-up to support smooth scrolling)
- Quick-Access bar on bottom (with auto-hide when not connected)
- Sliding Drawer with nowplaying info
- Use soft-keyboard to input text on htpc
- Directly select und jump to window
- Powermodes (Suspend, Hibernate, etc.)
- Manual control (start/stop timeshifts, stream channel to device)
- EPG (Record program, Cancel recording
- Show Groups/Channels/Channel Details
There's not many (if any) commercial solutions available that let you access all your movies, tv shows and musicfiles from your smartphone AND watch tv, browse the tv program and schedule recordings.
MediaPortal remote (Android)
Similar to aMPdroid, Android remote by MediaPortal user kroko (known for countless MediaPortal plugins) is a native App for Android devices. It connects to MediaPortal clients and allows access to music and videos, remote controlling, nowplaying information and much more...
For a preview version and more information on the project, visit the forum topic.
iOS users rejoice, you can also access your favorite MediaCenter from your iphones, ipods and ipads. With CouchPotatoes from longtime MediaPortal user shukuyen. MediaPortal clients in the network are automatically discovered by using the bonjour protocol. WOL is supported as well as many power-down options (shutdown, hibernate, reboot, ...).
Commands can be sent through a great looking honeycomb-styled user interface and for entering text the app uses the default ios soft keyboard.
Yatse 2 (Windows tablets)
Yatse (Yet Another Touch Screen Experiment) is a remote control designed for windows based tablets. Like the android and iOS remotes it offers a great looking interface and allows you to browse through your mediacollection and remote-control the MediaPortal client.
When it comes to mobile access, MediaPortal offers lots of options. You can follow development on the mobile forums, can access your MediaPortal installations on Android, Windows and iOS based devices and on most mobile browsers.