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Could we use a Smartphone to control the Hummy (?)

Discussion in 'HD/HDR-FOX T2 Customised Firmware' started by oijonesey, Mar 27, 2012.

  1. oijonesey

    oijonesey Hummy.tv SEO Guru

    I know we have the phone version of the webif on the iphone but I was hunting about for some info on using an old PC as a media machine for a friend of mine and stumbled across this at www.remotemouse.net - with all the talk of doing different/extra stuff with the remote, and the fact that we can't really hack into that, could we do something like this?

    Remotemouse has the app on the phone and something on the PC for it to talk to. So with a package on the Hummy that signals from the phone can communicate with via the wireless network, then the package fires off commands in the same way that I presume the IR receiver fires them off in order to get the Hummy to do stuff? So it's not necessarily about getting the Hummy to do anything new, more about having a cool touchscreen remote control that lights up and gives us the option to configure whatever layout of buttons we want. e.g. once a movie has started I might only want a few big buttons like Pause/Play, Stop, FWD and RWD, Volume? Or you can swipe through a variety of button pages suited for TV, and another for Movies, File Management etc etc.

    This might be way off target and totally impossible but I just thought I'd ask in case anyone might know how to do it. If not then no-one reply to this and it'll soon fall out of sight!!! :)
  2. Black Hole

    Black Hole May contain traces of nut


    The custom portal people have found out how to receive input from the RC, so that might reveal how to inject simulated RC key presses. Once you have that, the rest should be reasonably easy (although it would take somebody willing to champion the project to turn it into something "nice").
  3. darkflare

    darkflare Member

    I'm an android developer, what feature set are you after for the mobile application? I cant really help with writing the web service on the humax but I can probably help/implement an android app if you write the web service.

    So yea, what features do you want and i'll let you know how difficult it would be to implement in android. =)

    fattakin likes this.
  4. James

    James Member

    I suspect he is after something like popcorn hour have done with their remote control pacge for iOS and android which is basicly a touch screen version of the boxes remote that connects via the network to the box, and hence you can control the box from anywhere you have access to the box via an IP network - works very well via Slingbox if you want to watch something when your away the other side of the world :)
  5. oijonesey

    oijonesey Hummy.tv SEO Guru

    Yup pretty much what James said plus the kind of thing I put in first post (this started as a normal paragraph but it seems a list will work better) so, in no particular order, some ideas....
    • Speciality collections of chunky buttons rather than the unlit standard remote that you can't see in the dark.
    • Rather than IP control from around the world it could give wireless control around the house if you were using the Hummy to push content out i.e. if I had a long enough lead or a video sender thingamyjig to take the scart output to another room I could still control the Hummy from that other room?
    • If the box was concealed or out of line of sight, or not having to do "RC Yoga" to point the remote around the dog who's decided to fall asleep in front of the box and block the IR receiver?
    • If we ever get the box to do stuff for which there is no existing button on the remote - something on the custom portal perhaps?
    • Could I use a smartphone keyboard to type stuff into the Hummy instead of the on screen thing via the remote?
    • Could I take the Favourites option to the next level if I had phone control over changing channels could I get a 'Smart Favourites' list that could show me channels according to my program preferences combined with what's actually on now (a bit like the RS auto scheduler search but it dynamically builds me a channel list to choose from in real time from a list of keywords or subjects?)
    • Alerts on the phone if something is starting? Existing reminders bleeping up on the phone in case I'm not in front of the box?
    • Is there anything the RS service could send to the box to make it do stuff if we can find a way to fire off the equivalents of RC commands to the Hummy
    BTW not wanting to stifle creativity but just to be up front about the fact I don't have Android, so I wouldn't be able to help test anything :-(
    Fumar Sid likes this.
  6. af123

    af123 Administrator Staff Member

    I've looked on and off at a way of injecting remote control commands into the Humax software.

    On the Foxsat, there are two threads in the software that communicate using a POSIX message queue, so it's relatively simple to inject commands of your own into that queue - they've done that with a very nice web interface plugin (http://img528.imageshack.us/img528/1093/remotecontrolpage.png)

    Things aren't as simple on the freeview boxes. If anyone with UNIX/programming/debugging skills is interested in getting involved at looking at this with me then please PM me and maybe we can make some progress. It must be possible!
  7. darkflare

    darkflare Member

    Personally I cant see the advantage of controlling the box's functions via smart phone for things like volume, channel etc.

    I think the real advantage would be reviewing the epg on your phone and schedules. To this end im making a new thread about the RS project
  8. fattakin

    fattakin Member

    vote for this for sure. would make iplayer / youtube a bit more bearable!
  9. oijonesey

    oijonesey Hummy.tv SEO Guru

    You're probably right - it was really some ideas to have a 'light up' remote by virtue of the phones screen which might be easier to use in the dark when watching movies and stuff, and also because I often have my phone in pocket for ad hoc browsing (and forum checking of course :)) and if the remote happened to be out of my reach I could use my phone because I suppose basically at heart I'm just a lazy b*****d :D :D
    Fumar Sid likes this.
  10. Black Hole

    Black Hole May contain traces of nut

    IIRC there is a cradle for the iPhone which provides an IR emitter, and an app turns it into a universal remote.

    I have already contemplated an Ethernet-connected on/off, that could be extended to a code blaster that could be operated by a web interface.
  11. hugoread

    hugoread Member

    Exactly! Without doubt the absolute WORST thing about the standard functionality of the box is the awful iPlayer. Trying to type the buttons to search for a programme is really horrible and unfortunately I have to do it all the time for my kids' programmes! Why on earth it doesn't do a search AFTER you've finished typing god only knows. Instead it searches for programmes after each button press and takes about a uranus year to complete a word. Nightmare.

    Another key advantage for me is removing the line of light of the remote, as mine's in a cupboard that I would prefer to keep closed.
  12. Trevor Jasper

    Trevor Jasper Member

    Hi, af123.

    Haven't posted in a while, but one of the things that annoys me is having to have the TV on to see what's happening with the remote when trying to play music. I have quite a few albums stored on the Humax and I would use the humax as a media player much more if I could control it from a pc/phone app without having to have the screen on. I suppose I'm unusual in having a purely manual amp which, being naturally lazy means that it's mostly on the humax! I would love to use the humax to play more music, including through dlna/samba shares etc!

    What I would like is a more music-oriented way of playing stuff (playlists, even). Can the webif (and by extension the mobile version) trigger playing audio files etc?

    Hope you all had a Merry Christmas and have a Happy New Year, one and all.....