Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

VLC 's Beta For Android Is Ready — Unless You're North American

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the norteamericano-is-the-correct-term dept.

Android 118

MrSeb writes "The VideoLAN Project has pushed a beta version of VLC for Android to the Google Play Store. The beta brings most of the functionality of VLC for Linux, Windows, and Mac OS X to Android in a native UI in the Android 4.0 Holo style. However, there are a few hitches. The beta release published to the Google Play Store today is only compatible with ARM systems that use the ARMv7 architecture set and support the NEON instruction set. That means that there are several devices — mostly those released before the Samsung Galaxy S in late 2010, and anything powered by Tegra 2 — that cannot run the current beta. Also, apparently due to a lack of North America-specific Android test devices, VLC for Android is currently not available from the US or Canadian Play Store. Both problems should be rectified soon, though." VLC is one of those impressive programs that just works with nearly any input thrown at it, and one of the first things I put on any computer. I hope the Android version retains pitch-controlled variable-speed playback, perhaps my favorite VLC feature, and something I miss on my tablet.

cancel ×

118 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

People have brains (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40530785)

Unless you're North American...

Re:People have brains (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40534173)

Gentlemen, I like VLC.

  Gentlemen, I love VLC!

  I like AVI, I like RMVB.

  I like 120fps, I like interlacing.

  I like rainbowing, I like the dot crawl, I like blocking.

  I like the ringing, and I like tinny audio.

  On a computer, a DVD player, a PS3, on a Mac, on an Archos. I truly love each and every kind of artifact man can encode to a file.

  I like the broken ASS support when even the simplest of lines fails to render correctly. When the translatorâ(TM)s notes overlap the main dialogue, it makes my heart dance!

  I like when an encode displays like it is corrupted! It always left a warm feeling in my chest when they would check the CRC, only to find it is correct.

  I like it when #darkhold encoders post on AnimeSuki and rage about the topic at hand. I recall how much it moved me, seeing how epic longposts were made - how they would shun the subject again and again, even though it wouldnâ(TM)t die. And itâ(TM)s painfully exciting when a leecher posts about how great it is in the same thread. And how wonderful it is to have 120fps for a show that is a constant 23.976!

  And that pitiful resistance, encoding to h264, despite it being harder on the CPU. I even remember when Xvid had a 10:1 leecher ratio!

  I like it when the MKV fanboys are thrown into chaos. And when the VFR feature they are supposed to be promoting is violated repeatedly⦠oh how very sad it is.

  I like it when the detail and sharpness in HD encodes are crushed and obliterated! And them being filtered, smearing and ghosting and looking worse than a standard DVD. Gentlemen, what I want is a low bitrate hell.

  Gentlemen, my compatriotsâ¦

  Leechers, you who abuse my XDCC botsâ¦

  Gentlemen, what do you desire? Do you also want eyecancer? Is a return to the age of VCDs what you want?

  Do you yearn for a VHS encode that stretches the very limits of poor quality, the artifacts so intense that it makes Stevie Wonder cringe?

  Very well then, we shall have VLC.

tegra 2 (2)

Skarecrow77 (1714214) | more than 2 years ago | (#40530805)

I remember when the tegra 2 was hot shit.

i mean, i love my asus tf101, it's awesome, but it always saddens me when there's yet one more cool thing like thist that it won't support cause of lack of NEON instructions or limited video memory bandwidth or something like that.

Re:tegra 2 (4, Informative)

mcrbids (148650) | more than 2 years ago | (#40530969)

I remember when the tegra 2 was hot shit.

Meh.

I remember when the AMD 386DX40 was considered to be wickedly fast, except for the Motorolla 68xxx line in the Macs. Now, my router has a more powerful CPU that runs on just 100 milliamps, 5 volts. Although the i7 is today's "wickedly fast" x86 processor, I don't remember really giving all that much of a damned about it. The marketplace has matured, and nobody really cares all that much any more.

Did you get a Core2, i5, or AMD CPU? Would you notice if you had? Chances are that you wouldn't notice the difference. Because it does the job well and reliably, I'm still using a 10 year old Pentium 3 server as a network monitor!

But phones are different. It's still new technology, needed features are still being implemented, tested, and improved on. My 2 year old Droid2 phone is already so obsolete that when I went to exchange it because of a defect, Verizon decided to replace it with an entirely new model!

Re:tegra 2 (-1, Troll)

Unificitation (2676227) | more than 2 years ago | (#40531459)

VLC is one of those impressive programs that just works with nearly any input thrown at it, and one of the first things I put on any computer. I hope the Android version retains pitch-controlled variable-speed playback, perhaps my favorite VLC feature, and something I miss on my tablet.

I completely agree with you VLC being good with any video file you throw at it, however it must be said that QuickTime integrates much better with the system and is much better for creating video. Especially with FaceTime camera.

Re:tegra 2 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40531609)

VLC is one of those impressive programs that just works with nearly any input thrown at it, and one of the first things I put on any computer. I hope the Android version retains pitch-controlled variable-speed playback, perhaps my favorite VLC feature, and something I miss on my tablet.

I completely agree with you VLC being good with any video file you throw at it, however it must be said that QuickTime integrates much better with the system and is much better for creating video. Especially with FaceTime camera.

I'd rather have Mplayer and prefer it over both VLC and QuickTime.

Re:tegra 2 (1)

Unificitation (2676227) | more than 2 years ago | (#40531645)

VLC is one of those impressive programs that just works with nearly any input thrown at it, and one of the first things I put on any computer. I hope the Android version retains pitch-controlled variable-speed playback, perhaps my favorite VLC feature, and something I miss on my tablet.

I completely agree with you VLC being good with any video file you throw at it, however it must be said that QuickTime integrates much better with the system and is much better for creating video. Especially with FaceTime camera.

I'd rather have Mplayer and prefer it over both VLC and QuickTime.

Mplayer is not available for BSD.

Re:tegra 2 (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40531943)

VLC is one of those impressive programs that just works with nearly any input thrown at it, and one of the first things I put on any computer. I hope the Android version retains pitch-controlled variable-speed playback, perhaps my favorite VLC feature, and something I miss on my tablet.

I completely agree with you VLC being good with any video file you throw at it, however it must be said that QuickTime integrates much better with the system and is much better for creating video. Especially with FaceTime camera.

I'd rather have Mplayer and prefer it over both VLC and QuickTime.

Mplayer is not available for BSD.

Yes, that was your cue that I wasn't talking about BSD.

Re:tegra 2 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40532233)

Yes it is. See /usr/ports/multimedia/mplayer on freebsd.

It is also available on homebrew for mac.

I don't know its status for Net and Open though.

Re:tegra 2 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40534727)

trololol

Re:tegra 2 (1)

yotto (590067) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532649)

I'd rather have Mplayer and prefer it over both VLC and QuickTime.

You're in luck [xda-developers.com] .

Re:tegra 2 (1)

Atti K. (1169503) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532397)

Yeah, QuickTime integrates much better with the system, especially on Windows.

Re:tegra 2 (3, Insightful)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 2 years ago | (#40533049)

Quicktime does a poor job of dealing with random audio and video formats and doesn't have a good package management system to back it up.

That's why VLC is a very popular Mac download.

It covers up both of those faults in MacOS or Windows.

Re:tegra 2 (2)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 2 years ago | (#40534079)

I'm a big fan of VLC, because i seem to get some consistency no matter what system I run it on.

Re:tegra 2 (1)

moronoxyd (1000371) | more than 2 years ago | (#40533269)

Well, I don't feel like Quicktime integrates too well into my Windows system. And don't get me startet about Apples Linux support...

Re:tegra 2 (2)

Stewie241 (1035724) | more than 2 years ago | (#40535519)

Apple computers can run Linux just fine. :P

Re:tegra 2 (3, Interesting)

Man On Pink Corner (1089867) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532641)

Although the i7 is today's "wickedly fast" x86 processor, I don't remember really giving all that much of a damned about it. The marketplace has matured, and nobody really cares all that much any more.

I think that has more to do with the phenomenon known as Getting Old, than with the state of the marketplace. We, the desktop users, are the ones who have "matured."

Back in the day, you could argue about whether a 386-40 or a 486-25 was the better way to go. Some benchmarks went one way, some went the other. The difference between the fastest x86 CPUs and the slowest ones on the shelf at any given time was perhaps 2x-3x. A lot of us paid very close attention to the CPU market and were always up for an argument or flame war about it.

Today, the difference between the high-end Sandy Bridge/Ivy Bridge CPUs and the low-end parts is stupefying. The performance spread between the fastest and slowest devices is 6x [cpubenchmark.net] in the "high end" category alone. In the broader market the spread is more like 30x-50x. And this doesn't even consider GPU-based computing.

So I'd say the desktop CPU market is a lot more interesting now than it was back in the day... but there's too much other stuff going on that's even more interesting, like getting work done and paying the mortgage.

Re:tegra 2 (1)

serviscope_minor (664417) | more than 2 years ago | (#40534153)

The performance spread between the fastest and slowest devices is 6x in the "high end"

I agree with your overall point, but the high end category includes some quite dubious choices for high end, and also some rather ancient parts.

Also, there's some weird results, like the Opteron 6274 scoring lower than hte identical but slower clocked 6272 and the A8 CU being quite close to the 12 core Opteron 6172, which utterly smashes the 6134, by a much larger factor than the advantage in core count.

Very strange.

Re:tegra 2 (2)

aynoknman (1071612) | more than 2 years ago | (#40533113)

I remember when the tegra 2 was hot shit.

Meh.

I remember when the AMD 386DX40 was considered to be wickedly fast, except for the Motorolla 68xxx line in the Macs. Now, my router has a more powerful CPU that runs on just 100 milliamps, 5 volts. . . .

Meh.

I remember when the PDP11/73 was considered awesomely fast. Now I have a faster processor in my wristwatch.

Re:tegra 2 (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#40534655)

That is why I've been saying for ages that just as desktops matured so too will mobile devices and at the current rate their "MHz wars' will be winding down soon simply because there is only so much power you can use before battery life becomes an issue with the whole "thin is in" design aesthetic.

I figure another 2 years, 3 tops and we'll be right back to where we are with desktops and laptops, with every device so insanely overpowered compared to what the average user does with it that folks won't get rid of one until it dies. After all there is only so much one can do on a 3.4-7 inch screen before it becomes "eyestrainovision" and not worth the trouble. So if it were me, buy cheap and be prepped to toss when like Tegra 2 they are quickly EOLed, just as many of us bought the Celerons and Durons back in the day because the chips would be out of date so damned quick it wasn't worth going cutting edge.

Re:tegra 2 (1)

mjwx (966435) | more than 2 years ago | (#40535861)

Meh.

I remember when the AMD 386DX40 was considered to be wickedly fast, except for the Motorolla 68xxx line in the Macs. Now, my router has a more powerful CPU that runs on just 100 milliamps, 5 volts. Although the i7 is today's "wickedly fast" x86 processor, I don't remember really giving all that much of a damned about it. The marketplace has matured, and nobody really cares all that much any more.

Did you get a Core2, i5, or AMD CPU? Would you notice if you had? Chances are that you wouldn't notice the difference.

We've reached the point where the processing requirement of software no longer routinely outweighs the processing power available. So yeah, the difference between a budget AMD and latest i7 is trivial unless you've got some very demanding software (I.E. a database) and then, your performance chips are in the server market. HDD speed is a bigger bottleneck for the consumer these days.

My gaming rig is over 3 years old, It's an AMD Phenom 2 955 with a Geforce 285. High end when I bought it and 3 years on it can still play the latest games on the highest settings. I've made a few minor upgrades (4 to 8 GB of RAM and an SSD) but these were optional, I've had no requirement to replace the machine as the CPU and GPU can keep up with the latest games.

The same is true with most of the software we use, hardware requirements are more than enough to meet its needs. A $500 PC is sufficient to run most things the average person would run. Few people notice any wait time when using their computer (and the young whipper snappers don't remember the wait time loading games from four 720 K floppies because you had no room on your HDD, kids these days).

Re:tegra 2 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40536553)

But phones are different. It's still new technology, needed features are still being implemented, tested, and improved on. My 2 year old Droid2 phone is already so obsolete that when I went to exchange it because of a defect, Verizon decided to replace it with an entirely new model!

Looks like you bought a shit phone. My 2 year old iPhone 4 is still for sale, brand new.

Re:tegra 2 (1)

camperslo (704715) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532145)

i mean, i love my asus tf101, it's awesome, but it always saddens me when there's yet one more cool thing like this that it won't support cause of lack of NEON instructions or limited video memory bandwidth or something like that.

Well hopefully there will be a version supporting whatever features the hardware is capable of. Being open source, motivated individuals could cook up such a build even if it isn't officially supported.

The VLC variable speed playback feature is great for a few of the older movies that move a bit too slowly at times. (many in public domain are available at archive.org)

It's bad enough when a smaller item that doesn't last too long, like a phone, gets obsoleted by software changes. It really hurts when it's a major item.
It's a little hard to believe that U.S. HDTV broadcasts and the receivers sold for them are built around MPEG2. If there's also support or a simple (over the air firmware transfer) upgrade path to add h.264 or other codecs I haven't heard about it. I suppose the earlier sets might have lacked the CPU power needed for more advanced codecs, but things really have moved along quickly with small mobile devices able to handle them now.

I don't know what could be worse. Maybe the FCC mandated proprietary codecs in the digital AM/FM broadcasts that very few have any interest in?

Re:tegra 2 (1)

makomk (752139) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532467)

Tegra 2 was obsolete due to its lack of NEON instructions for its entire lifetime, it just wasn't always as obvious as this.

Re:tegra 2 (1)

PRMan (959735) | more than 2 years ago | (#40533117)

Why do I care? The included video app plays every video in my video share already (except TiVo .ty), even weird formats like .3g2. If the included app already plays everything, who cares about VLC?

Re:tegra 2 (1)

mrvan (973822) | more than 2 years ago | (#40533171)

Tried using VLC to stream from my dreambox satellite receiver, but no luck. It doesn't recognize the m3u file and it I point it to a web address it doesn't do anything. Hope that they'll fix it in the real version!

Re:tegra 2 (1)

kllrnohj (2626947) | more than 2 years ago | (#40537051)

I remember when the tegra 2 was hot shit.

Tegra 2 was *never* hot shit. Nvidia didn't know what they fuck they were doing when they built it, and it is obvious. GPU was weak compared to the competition, the CPU was missing obvious stuff like NEON, it is so memory bandwidth starved it's ridiculous, etc...

What Nvidia managed to do really well, though, was *pretend* it was hot shit, which was convincing enough for tech bloggers.

Hardware acceleration? (3, Interesting)

JDG1980 (2438906) | more than 2 years ago | (#40530871)

Will this version of VLC support hardware acceleration for H.264 and other video formats on those devices where the hardware supports it?

Re:Hardware acceleration? (3, Informative)

WilyCoder (736280) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532117)

You're not gonna get hardware acceleration any better than what the device manufacturer supplies via their include 'video' app.

Getting access to those HW accelerated video decoders is very black box in nature. Notice how the article mentions requiring the NEON instruction set. VLC must be using the simd instruction set called NEON to do the decoding.

Surprisingly, you can achieve a good amount of performance by using NEON in your code (I've used it myself).

Re:Hardware acceleration? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40532239)

Surprisingly, you can achieve a good amount of performance by using NEON in your code (I've used it myself).

720p+ video at 30fps isn't one of those on the current ARM devices.

On a similar note, it's theoretically possible to get better performance out of the video decoders if you use OMXIL directly as opposed to using the Java platform api's. The problem is that these API's aren't officially supported or documented, and there might be platform incompatibilities.

Android 4.0 introduced the OpenMAX AL that hooks upto the playerframework in a way I'm not entirely familiar with, but the downside is a braindead API that assumes you don't really want to control the stream, and only supporting MPEG2-TS H264. (This might've changed in 4.1). P.S. I don't blame Google for the API, it's Khronos.

Re:Hardware acceleration? (1)

WilyCoder (736280) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532989)

I'm fairly certain you can achieve 30fps playback of 720p content when it is main profile (not high profile) using a multithreaded decode (even without NEON). There's some apps in the market that do this. Damned if I can't remember their name. I had a Xoom (it died a few months back) and purchased it on release day. The nvidia supplied video decoder couldn't do HW acceleration of high profile decoding at release so there was a bunch of people on XDA trying to figure out how to play their video rips. Someone found this video player app that could utilize the multiple cores of Tegra2 to decode the video. It worked pretty well. I imagine NEON would great enhance that decode process.

My personal experience with NEON code cannot really be shared (or even discussed) due to NDA. But I can say that I was surprised how powerful NEON is on those dinky mobile processors....

Re:Hardware acceleration? (1)

RCL (891376) | more than 2 years ago | (#40535273)

My personal experience with NEON code cannot really be shared (or even discussed) due to NDA. But I can say that I was surprised how powerful NEON is on those dinky mobile processors....

Why is that? NEON instruction set is open [arm.com] . And as fast as it is, it's no match for a dedicated video decoder chip (both performance-wise and power consumption-wise). It's just a SIMD instruction set, like SSE or 3DNow!, really good for processing several data elements at once, but doesn't offer more parallelism than that.

Re:Hardware acceleration? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40532879)

You're not gonna get hardware acceleration any better than what the device manufacturer supplies via their include 'video' app.

Except that the included apps on my Transformer Prime are utterly helpless at playing most of my collection of DVDs/BluRays, which are in MKV format. So in that case, any hardware acceleration that actually works is better than whats included.

Re:Hardware acceleration? (1)

PRMan (959735) | more than 2 years ago | (#40533153)

which are in MKV format

Well THERE's your problem. All my .mp4 and .m4v files work just fine on my original Transformer.

Re:Hardware acceleration? (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 2 years ago | (#40533679)

Yes. We should all adapt to our consumer devices that are PCs in disguise rather than expecting those PCs in disguise to be flexible enough to adapt to us instead.

"...lowered expec-t-a-a-tions"

It's not a different "format". It's a different container. It's the most trivial aspect of the entire problem.

Where's the Slow/Fast speed buttons? (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#40530883)

It appears VLC has removed them since the version I'm using.

Re:Where's the Slow/Fast speed buttons? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40531017)

Keyboard shortcuts only now, I think it is + and - by default.

Re:Where's the Slow/Fast speed buttons? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40531185)

You can add them back if you customize the UI, apparently enough casuals complained about the UI being "too complicated".

Re:Where's the Slow/Fast speed buttons? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40531357)

Select "View --> Status Bar" to see the variable speed control.

Re:Where's the Slow/Fast speed buttons? (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532055)

Still don't see the speed control. Oh well.

Re:Where's the Slow/Fast speed buttons? (3, Informative)

KuNgFo0 (519426) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532155)

Enable the status bar like the parent said, then you can click on the "1.00x" text and a popup gives you the speed controls.

Good to have, not my favorite. (1)

guidryp (702488) | more than 2 years ago | (#40530925)

Good to have VLC on any OS, but it isn't my favorite player anywhere and it does seem a bit flaky under Linux.

Under Linux, it will often lose sync in DTS/DD SPDIF passthrough, and worse it will occasionally crash and completely lock up Linux. So I use smplayer instead, which has no issue with DTS/DD passthrough and it never takes down Linux.

On Windows it doesn't have either of these problems, but I prefer MPC-HC on Windows.

Re:Good to have, not my favorite. (1)

Picass0 (147474) | more than 2 years ago | (#40531249)

"...it does seem a bit flaky under Linux."

I'm a Fedora user and in my experience it's the Swiss Army knife of media players. It works with everything I throw at it.

I am disappointed the VLC beta doesn't work reliably on my Galaxy SII touch. It seems more alpha than beta.

for people in north america (4, Informative)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | more than 2 years ago | (#40530931)

for people in north America just grab it off of their nightly build site. thats what i did yesterday

You can still get it and it works... (5, Informative)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#40530949)

You can always download it from the Nighties

http://nightlies.videolan.org/build/android-v7-neon/VLC-debug.apk [videolan.org]
or for Tegra 2:
http://nightlies.videolan.org/build/android-v7-tegra2/VLC-debug.apk [videolan.org]

Plays all files, in all formats, like the classic VLC.
Audio and video media library, with full search.
Support for network streams, including HLS.
Supports Android from version 2.1 (platform-7).
Supports ARMv6, ARMv7 and ARMv7+NEON.
Subtitles support, embedded and external, including ASS and DVD subtitles.
Multi audio or subtitles tracks selection.
Multi-core decoding, for Cortex-A7 A9 and A15 chips.
Experimental hardware decoding.
Gestures, headphones control.

I sincerely doubt its due to an unavailability of US/Canadian test devices because late model GSM HSPA/UMTS devices from all the major manufacturers are pretty much the same world wide. I actually prefer buying unlocked international versions of these devices rather than carrier models.

I suspect this is really another patent fight over Codecs used or worked around by VLC, and the Google Market (play store) is making sure they don't end up on the wrong side of the MPAA, (not to mention trying to keep Google's YOUTube ox from being gored.

It does work, but won't necessarily play everything the desktop version plays just yet. The software decoding is slow and jerky for videos recorded on the android device it self, and the sound is out of sync, where as the embedded video player, or the desktop version works perfectly playing the same files.

It has a hard time of finding media on External_SD or attached USB storage on some tablets.
Still its a beta. And its nice to see progress,

Re:You can still get it and it works... (1)

ilikenwf (1139495) | more than 2 years ago | (#40531243)

Neon build works great on my HP Touchpad...

Re:You can still get it and it works... (1)

iluvcapra (782887) | more than 2 years ago | (#40531559)

I suspect this is really another patent fight over Codecs used or worked around by VLC, and the Google Market (play store) is making sure they don't end up on the wrong side of the MPAA, (not to mention trying to keep Google's YOUTube ox from being gored.

I seem to recall Apple had no problem posting VLC on the App store, until one of VLC's copyright holders (and, in what I am sure was a complete coincidence, a Nokia employee) demanded it be taken down [tuaw.com] .

Re:You can still get it and it works... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40532601)

Apple doesn't evaluate whether an App violates patents, and what's the point of bringing the dev's Nokia employment into this? The App Store isn't GPL-compliant. He had every right to demand it be taken down.

Re:You can still get it and it works... (2)

iluvcapra (782887) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532905)

The App Store isn't GPL-compliant.

Depends on the GPL version; the iOS App Store is perfectly GPL 2.0 compliant, as long as a distributor of software provides their source upon demand, they are fulfilling their terms under Section 3, paragraph b. Several iOS developers distribute GPL software, such as Doom, this way. VLC is distributed under GPL 2.0.

The GNU, unfortunately, promotes an intentionally obtuse interpretation of paragraph 6 of the v2.0 license, and only uses this interpretation when attacking software on the iOS App Store; it's happy to turn a blind eye to Android phone and tablet vendors who violate the GPL, mainly for strategic reasons.

Re:You can still get it and it works... (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#40536787)

The App Store isn't GPL-compliant.

Depends on the GPL version; the iOS App Store is perfectly GPL 2.0 compliant, as long as a distributor of software provides their source upon demand, they are fulfilling their terms under Section 3, paragraph b. Several iOS developers distribute GPL software, such as Doom, this way. VLC is distributed under GPL 2.0.

The issue is that the third party conversion of VLC in the Apple App Store imposed DRM on VLC. That was in violation of the GPL.
One of the developers of VLC, Rémi Denis-Courmont objected.

He did not object when the very same binary was distributed free on Cydia, because there was no additional DRM imposed.
He did the right thing. It had nothing to do with Paragraph 6.

See: http://arstechnica.com/apple/2011/01/vlc-for-ios-vanishes-2-months-after-eruption-of-gpl-dispute/ [arstechnica.com]

Re:You can still get it and it works... (1)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 2 years ago | (#40536571)

Interesting. When this story was front page news, I did not know that the programmer worked for Nokia.

Wonder if he still does?

Re:You can still get it and it works... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40532659)

Please release us from your hanging left parentheses.

Re:You can still get it and it works... (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532865)

)

Please release us from ACs.

nearly any input? (4, Funny)

Ardeaem (625311) | more than 2 years ago | (#40531109)

Whatever. I tried piping some input [random.org] to it and it failed miserably.

Re:nearly any input? (2)

Maximum Prophet (716608) | more than 2 years ago | (#40531225)

Whatever. I tried piping some input [random.org] to it and it failed miserably.

Hmm, I don't know what the problem was. I tried random input and it worked great. Just like I expected it to. (:-)

hmmmmm (5, Insightful)

nomadic (141991) | more than 2 years ago | (#40531431)

Ahhh, VLC. The only free, open source software I've ever seen that was just as good as the hype.

Re:hmmmmm (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40531815)

Ahhh, VLC. The only free, open source software I've ever seen that was just as good as the hype.

Hm. Never heard about Bitcoin? You must be new here...

Re:hmmmmm (1)

nomadic (141991) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532005)

If I wanted to speculate in near-worthless currency I'd just wait until Greece brings back the drachma, which should happen in a few months...

Re:hmmmmm (1)

mcavic (2007672) | more than 2 years ago | (#40533251)

Bitcoin software is very unfriendly. The concept is alright, but the tools need more development.

Re:hmmmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40536851)

It's not an alright concept. It's a scam.

Re:hmmmmm (1)

zmod3m (996289) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532051)

So all the rest was better than the hype? :-P

What for (2, Interesting)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#40531447)

What do I do with this? I could set it up. But beyond the hack value "hey I'm running VLC"...

So the target market is a subset of android users who know how to put files on a memory card but don't know how to transcode, who want to watch movies on a tiny little screen with a tinny mono speaker where the battery probably doesn't live long enough to watch a movie so its tv shows only ... I'm kinda getting painted into a corner for what to do with this.

I'm not (only) trying to make a rhetorical question but it is a fair question in general, what to do with this.
1) No access to a desktop to transcode on
2) Access to short/TV length files in odd formats that don't play natively
3) Not terribly concerned that it only works on certain / my hardware
4) Very concerned about video but not care about the awful audio
5) Tiny screen is OK (I thought the most important feature of couch potatoe viewing was the larger the screen the better, 60+ inches etc)
Man if I could do the above, then I would... um... what? I donno. Understand that I'm a pretty creative dude in general but in this specific instance and at this specific moment, I'm completely stumped.

Re:What for (2)

DeanCubed (814869) | more than 2 years ago | (#40531585)

I use a phone to play video for road trips all the time. Just grabbed an audio jack from my phone to the car speakers, and I dont really want to look at the screen much while driving. But to watch things like WWE wrestling, reality shows, Gordon Ramsey shows, Mythbusters, etc. it's convenient and my passengers can watch the screen no problem.

Re:What for (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40531717)

WWE? Really? What are we five?

Re:What for (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40531629)

What do I do with this?

You play audio and video files with it.

Re:What for (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40531693)

who want to watch movies on a tiny little screen with a tinny mono speaker where the battery probably doesn't live long enough to watch a movie so its tv shows only

I haven't tried it on my Transformer (TF101) yet but I don't anticipate major problems with screen size (for a travel device) or battery. The speaker isn't great though I'll admit (I usually use earphones).

Re:What for (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532089)

or a travel device ... I usually use earphones

OK that is a real answer and a real good idea. Given some headphones it would basically be a flash memory version of my old automobile DVD player, admittedly with a much smaller screen, but it would store more movies per cubic inch or per pound or whatever.

Of course I could just transcode and avoid the whole VLC / hardware compatibility list whatever.

As a side note it is pretty funny that when Linux has a "hardware compatibility" list that means no one can or should use it and we should all laugh until that list is completely empty, but when a commercial mass market product has a "hardware compatibility" list, then suddenly everyone should be excited about it and its a great idea and its the year of the android tablet on the linux desktop or whatever.

Re:What for (4, Insightful)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532293)

Of course I could just transcode and avoid the whole VLC / hardware compatibility list whatever.

You could, but why make all that extra work for yourself?

1 - download media file to device
2 - discover it doesn't play on the stock player (*.avi, for example)
3 - copy file from device to computer
4 - fire up transcoding software and wait 10 min - 1hour+ for completion
5 - copy new transcoded file back to device
6 - play file in stock player (maybe, assuming the transcoder didn't mess anything up, you had all the settings perfect, Venus is in alignment, etc.)

--or--

1 - download media file to device
2 - play in VLC


At least, that's how it's worked for me thus far, but of course, YMMV.

Re:What for (1)

alexo (9335) | more than 2 years ago | (#40535231)

Of course I could just transcode and avoid the whole VLC / hardware compatibility list whatever.

You could, but why make all that extra work for yourself?

Not to mention that, if it includes any sort of DRM, no matter how trivial, "breaking" is it is now illegal in Canada (thanks to our Beloved Conservative Overlords).

Re:What for (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40532371)

Given some headphones it would basically be a flash memory version of my old automobile DVD player, admittedly with a much smaller screen

How big was the screen on your old automobile DVD player? My Transformer has a 10 inch screen which seems to me like plenty for a travel device (in many ways I'd prefer a 7 inch screen which would just about fit into an inside jacket pocket)

Re:What for (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40532525)

it is pretty funny that when Linux has a "hardware compatibility" list that means no one can or should use it and we should all laugh until that list is completely empty, but when a commercial mass market product has a "hardware compatibility" list, then suddenly everyone should be excited about it

From here it looks like you're the one who's laughing at the open source product (VLC) for having a "hardware compatability list". Is there something I'm missing?

Re:What for (2)

justinlindh (1016121) | more than 2 years ago | (#40531711)

The only reason that I've been anticipating VLC on Android is for SMB streaming on my Xoom. The 10.1" screen is perfect for watching a flick in bed, so the tiny screen concern kind of evaporates. I have no interest, whatsoever, in configuring transcoding: I just want my device to be able to play videos natively, and across my existing network.

Can someone who's tried the Beta comment on whether it has SMB support? Bonus points if you can tell me whether Tegra 2 seems to be able to play an average 720p H.264 reasonably well.

Re:What for (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532043)

SMB streaming

OK that is a real answer, and is also a real good idea. I've not had great success watching mythtv recordings using my phone, maybe VLC would decode better. I could skim thru a show, for example, decide if its worth watching on the tv or if not I could just delete it. Or I suppose I could do the mythtv "watch live TV" thing on my phone and go watch the weather channel or whatever in the morning.

Re:What for (1)

Laur (673497) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532705)

I have not idea if VLC natively supports SMB streaming (I didn't even know that was a feature desktop VLC had), but SMB streaming is wroking great for me with cifsmanager. [google.com]

Re:What for (1)

Belial6 (794905) | more than 2 years ago | (#40531747)

Your problem is you are looking at the things that id doesn't do or doesn't do well. You should be looking at the things it does do, and does do well. Common logic error.

Re:What for (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532109)

Yeah I assumed it was obvious that it plays videos pretty well is a given for the audience. Probably everyone here (?) has used VLC on a desktop at one time or another. If it doesn't work "right" on mplayer then simply try vlc or vice versa.

Re:What for (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40531799)

What do I do with this? I could set it up. But beyond the hack value "hey I'm running VLC"...

So the target market is a subset of android users who know how to put files on a memory card but don't know how to transcode, who want to watch movies on a tiny little screen with a tinny mono speaker where the battery probably doesn't live long enough to watch a movie so its tv shows only ... I'm kinda getting painted into a corner for what to do with this.

I'm not (only) trying to make a rhetorical question but it is a fair question in general, what to do with this.
1) No access to a desktop to transcode on
2) Access to short/TV length files in odd formats that don't play natively
3) Not terribly concerned that it only works on certain / my hardware
4) Very concerned about video but not care about the awful audio
5) Tiny screen is OK (I thought the most important feature of couch potatoe viewing was the larger the screen the better, 60+ inches etc)
Man if I could do the above, then I would... um... what? I donno. Understand that I'm a pretty creative dude in general but in this specific instance and at this specific moment, I'm completely stumped.

If the Android version has the same features has the PC version, you could:
* use your phone as a RTSP server to stream its video / sound files or capture camera / micro output (transforming it into a kind of webcam for your PC).
* use your tablet as a universal multimedia file player (which is not so stupid because even if the screen is tiny, chances are that your TV's resolution is lower than most recent tablets).
* actually have some use for this damn HDMI output that you never got to plug.
* do a lot of über geeky things like using the aalib output?(not sure it is implmented, hence the ?)

Re:What for (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532153)

RTSP server to stream its video / sound files or capture camera / micro output

OK that is a real idea and a real good idea. I'm surprised no one has ever proposed something like that for camera apps. So after you record the cops beating a minority, the cops want to wipe your phone's memory. Um, OK guys wipe away, see what I care, its already uploaded read-only status uploaded to youtube in real time, or being broadcast by the local tv station as you talk to me, so delete away if it makes you feel better....

Re:What for (2)

Laur (673497) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532443)

You're really not thinking very hard, Android runs on more than just tiny phones. I just installed the VLC alpha a few days ago on my (rooted) Kindle Fire, which is great for watching video (that's one of it's selling points). Combined with cifsmanager, I can now browse and play my entire music and movie collection on my home server, without having to transcode everything into the limited formats that the Kindle supports. Very, very useful indeed.

Re:What for (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 2 years ago | (#40533147)

> users who know how to put files on a memory card

Which is like what? Putting things on a floppy or CD on a Mac?

You plug it in. A nice explorer windows pops up. You drag and drop things to the window.

No advanced degree required.

Whether or not you want to watch videos on your phone or tablet is an entirely separate question. It's nice to have more than one option when it comes to software. Not everyone is an extra from an Apple SuperBowel Ad.

Re:What for (1)

ThatsMyNick (2004126) | more than 2 years ago | (#40535903)

My phone has a micro-HDMI port. I play movies at hotels and friends place directly from my phone. And yeah I dont really bother to transcode to shitty resolution, since I will be watching it on large screens anyways.

YES !!!! (1)

martiniturbide (1203660) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532029)

Living here in Ecuador I always complains when the stuff is only available for access in the US and not in the rest of the world.
Now is payback time !!!! ...ha ha...

...but seriusly, Im also against this. We are globalized now, this kind of things has to stop. Everybody should have access to the same things on the internet.

Re:YES !!!! (1)

lingu1st (778259) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532481)

Julian, is that you ?!??

Re:YES !!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40535115)

Now is playback time !!!! ...ha ha...

FTFY

VLC, MPLAYER, WHATEVER-PLAYER??? (1)

stanlyb (1839382) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532143)

What is the common thing between all these players? You are correct: ffmpeg library. Once you have this little tiny tini library ported for your favorite CPU, IT DOES NOT MATTER what UI you are actually using. If you are computer savvy enough, you could pretty well do with command line parameters only, and btw, it is how many "video" servers are actually implemented. Example: Sonic.

Re:VLC, MPLAYER, WHATEVER-PLAYER??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40534243)

Indeed. FFmpeg doesn't try to be awesome. Awesome tries to become ffmpeg!

Re:VLC, MPLAYER, WHATEVER-PLAYER??? (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 2 years ago | (#40535809)

Why would awesome [naquadah.org] want to become ffmpeg? ~

Is it good now? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40532255)

I haven't used it in years, It's always been frowned upon in the anime community because of bad subtitles handling, seek, performance, etc.
IIRC it was also slower to support new features like Hi10P and some .mkv stuff...

Did they fix all that stuff or are MPC:HC and Mplayer(2) still the way to go?

Impressive progams? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40532361)

VLC is one of those impressive programs that just works with nearly any input thrown at it, [...].

Or what we, in the Linux community, call "software". ^^

Re:Impressive progams? (3, Insightful)

chronoglass (1353185) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532631)

VLC is one of those impressive programs that just works with nearly any input thrown at it, [...].

Or what we, in the Linux community, call "software"*. ^^

* after all required dependancies are hunted down from the ends of the earth and/or compiled from source and installed.

Re:Impressive progams? (1)

chronoglass (1353185) | more than 2 years ago | (#40532713)

well crap, I've been spelling it wrong the whole time.. no wonder it never works like it should

Re:Impressive progams? (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 2 years ago | (#40533195)

> * after all required dependancies are hunted down from the ends of the earth and/or compiled from source and installed.

VLC is what you install on Windows or MacOS because this sort of thing is not automatically sorted out like it is on Linux.

Really. This is why I use VLC. I don't use it on Linux because none of the other Linux media player have the same annoying limitations as Quicktime or WMP.

DICE Player does variable-speed playback (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40532569)

It's not my favourite player (MX player would has that honour), but it's the only one I've seen that does pitch-shifted variable-speed playback. So you can watch talks at 1.5z or documentaries at 2x without people sounding like chipmunks. Now you don't have to miss that feature any more! :-)

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.inisoft.mediaplayer.trial

Re:DICE Player does variable-speed playback (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40532653)

-would-
*1.5x

I should have proofread better.

aaxine (1)

kurt555gs (309278) | more than 2 years ago | (#40533157)

If you have AT&T's shitty cellular internet, the only movie player compatible with the bandwidth you actually get is AAXINE. Which I can't seem to find in the PlayStore.

DVDs (1)

Ed Avis (5917) | more than 2 years ago | (#40533285)

So which Android devices let you plug in a DVD player (by USB, say) to play movies or rip them (probably without recompression) to local storage?

Re:DVDs (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 2 years ago | (#40535853)

Out of the box, none. In theory, any which are rootable and allow you to replace the kernel, since it's only a question of having the corresponding drivers compiled in - once that's there, software support should be fairly trivial. In fact, if you can see the filesystem, VLC should already work.

That said, Samsung has apparently released a USB DVD that is supported by stock Android 3.x and above [engadget.com] . Would be interesting to combine these two together and see how well it works.

Still can't skip back 10 seconds (1)

Snaller (147050) | more than 2 years ago | (#40534587)

Which is vital if you are listening to a podcast and need to hear something again.

What about the license? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40534719)

Last I checked, VLC uses the GPL license. How many app developers are going to be keen on open-sourcing their app?

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>