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franklyfred
2012-06-24, 16:42
Not a real computer coder, IT pro all of the above. Just wondering does logitech control the box. If logitech drops out will this device be usable with out their support. Bye the way I love my Touch and two Radios.

m1abrams
2012-06-24, 16:49
Well mysqueezebox would no longer work. However LMS is open source so it would continue and means the players would continue to operate.

garym
2012-06-24, 17:01
Well mysqueezebox would no longer work. However LMS is open source so it would continue and means the players would continue to operate.

lots of old thread on this conjecture. Bottom line, LMS would continue to work with your squeezebox players. You could play local music files and any internet radio stations where you can add the URL to the favorites (this is already true for most of my internet radio stations (radio paradise, wwoz, WNYC, etc.). You wouldn't be able to play Services (pandora, mog, siriusXM, etc.) unless someone wrote a plugin to allow you to connect and login, etc. Bottom line, 90% of my use would be unaffected (my own music and internet radio).

djdrey
2012-06-24, 19:36
It would be sad if they did, but considering the audio world seems to be turning into a ipod/Apple mono-culture, it seems like it could easily go that way.

I would hope that someone else would pick up the business and run with it, but who else out there is willing to spend the $$$ required to build and distribute hardware? That said, as the world moves to a digital/streaming model, the SB product line is only becoming *more* relevant, so it would be an ironic time to shut it down, considering you've already gotten thru the hard times.

JJZolx
2012-06-24, 19:52
No, Squeezeboxes will continue to work with a local server and local music files.

But if Logitech were to abandon mysqueezebox.com, several capabilities would be lost:

- access to music services (passwords are stored by mysqueezebox.com)
- browsing of the radio station directory
- the ability to listen to radio stations without a local server running

I could possibly see someone coming up with plugins to work around the first two.

Even if mysqueezebox.com is kept running, if the code isn't maintained then access to some music services might eventually stop working when those services change their access methods.

SBGK
2012-06-24, 22:13
Doesn't the touch need to contact the mysqueezebox.com during setup for device registration ?

I have never been able to setup the touch without connecting it to the internet during setup.

So presumably if mysqueezebox.com was no longer there then there would need to be a work around to allow the setup to continue after a factory reset.

JJZolx
2012-06-24, 23:37
Doesn't the touch need to contact the mysqueezebox.com during setup for device registration ?

I'm pretty sure that can be bypassed, but it's been quite a while since I did an initial configuration from a factory reset.

AndrewFG
2012-06-25, 01:58
It would be sad if they did, but considering the audio world seems to be turning into a ipod/Apple mono-culture, it seems like it could easily go that way.

Fortunately, the music world is not going in the direction of an Apple mono-culture. Actually the real trend is towards UPnP / DLNA. All the major audio/video consumer device manufacturers (think of the big names like Sony, Samsung, Philips, LG, Denon etc.) already support it. It is an open interworking standard so anyone can use it without paying royalties or risking legal disputes.

Ok admittedly some manufacturers (including Logitech) did not master the UPnP technology, and some implementations are still quite quirky; but on balance all the major manufacturers are using it, learning from their mistakes, and continuously improving their offerrings. Indeed even Microsoft supports UPnP. So basically it is Apple vs. R-o-W, and it is stacking up to become yet-another format war like Blu-Ray vs. HDDVD, however in this case I am putting my money on UPnP...

pippin
2012-06-25, 02:07
even Microsoft supports UPnP

"even" is nice for the ones who developed it (with Intel).
The problem with UPnP is that it sucks as a standard (especially UPnP AV) and more specifically most of the implementations do.
The reason a lot of consumer electronics companies support it is that they have no idea of SW development or relevant product management so they use what is cheapest and most easily available and dubbed as a "standard".
I have no data (how could one have) that even today more AirPlay devices are being used for audio streaming than UPnP devices, simple sales figures don't mean a thing. By sales figures I probably own a dozen or so "UPnP enabled" devices, none of which I have ever used for audio streaming through UPnP.

I'm pretty sure there are even more Squeezeboxes out there being actually used for audio streaming than UPnP devices.

UPnP is fine for video (that's another reason why it's being included in "multimedia" devices but it's a failure for audio.

I understand that your server shows what the _potential_ of it would be but the fact is that this is not what you will get out of your garden-variety CE device and also it obviously only works on Windows which is on it's way to become a niche system outside the corporate world by itself (OK, I'm exaggerating but let's talk again 5 years from now).

AndrewFG
2012-06-25, 05:18
The problem with UPnP is that it sucks as a standard (especially UPnP AV)


If you want to make an assertion like that, you have to provide us with specifics. { IMHO, as in a court of law, your assertion is wrong until proven otherwise. }



... and more specifically most of the implementations do.


No. Most of them don't suck. But many of them are very shoddy, I suspect mostly because the coders did not RTFM well enough before starting to cut code. (Been there, done that.)

erland
2012-06-25, 06:03
Fortunately, the music world is not going in the direction of an Apple mono-culture. Actually the real trend is towards UPnP / DLNA. All the major audio/video consumer device manufacturers (think of the big names like Sony, Samsung, Philips, LG, Denon etc.) already support it. It is an open interworking standard so anyone can use it without paying royalties or risking legal disputes.

Ok admittedly some manufacturers (including Logitech) did not master the UPnP technology, and some implementations are still quite quirky; but on balance all the major manufacturers are using it, learning from their mistakes, and continuously improving their offerrings. Indeed even Microsoft supports UPnP. So basically it is Apple vs. R-o-W, and it is stacking up to become yet-another format war like Blu-Ray vs. HDDVD, however in this case I am putting my money on UPnP...

Can you give some concrete examples of UPnP based players with decent (non IR) remote controls that gives me a browsing experience similar to either Squeezebox or a Apple solution ?

I've tried some UPnP server and I've also tried some remote controls, all have either been very limited or very buggy or very user unfriendly and this is simply not acceptable in my listening room. However, it might just be me that haven't found the good/working implementations.

Do you have any recommendations regarding good and working:
- iPad based UPnP remote control
- Android tablet based UPnP remote control
- A good UPnP server working on Windows
- A good UPnP server working on Linux
- A good UPnP server working on OSX
- A good UPnP server working on Sheevaplug or other similar devices with restricted resources
- A UPnP player similar to Squeezebox Radio
- A UPnP player similar to Squeezebox Touch

I would love if UPnP (or any standard) would get a broad acceptance and provide the user experience I want, unfortunately the only solutions that offers that kind of user experience seems to be based more or less on proprietary protocols (Squeezebox, Apple, Sonos, ...)

From what I've seen UPnP have two major problems (unless I've misunderstood something):
- It's very complex, because it tries to support a lot, which causes more or less all implementations to be buggy or incompatible in some way.
- It requires the remote control (if it's UPnP based) to be powered on all the time, which uses a lot of battery on a smart phone/tablet based control. The reason for this is that the controller is the one that controls the playlist and instruct the player which track to play next.

pippin
2012-06-25, 06:28
If you want to make an assertion like that, you have to provide us with specifics. { IMHO, as in a court of law, your assertion is wrong until proven otherwise. }

No, it's just my opinion after spending quite a bit of time on the topic over the last year. It's overly complex, uses badly performing interfaces like SOAP and the architecture is 1990ish not taking into account the realities of today's world. I especially do not believe that it's possible to do a well-performing controller-renderer model that does not have the CP on either the server or the renderer. I know there are extensions that would help but they are being supported by close to nobody.

I know good people who have tried hard to do multiroom-synchronization with UPnP and who have failed and reverted to proprietary solutions instead.

At best it's a data source protocol. Which is why it works for video where this is actually all you need. No need for gapless transitions between movies and you also rarely queue up dozens of them at a time. Plus your CP is usually on the renderer, after all, you do already have a screen.



No. Most of them don't suck. But many of them are very shoddy, I suspect mostly because the coders did not RTFM well enough before starting to cut code. (Been there, done that.)
Sorry, English being not my mother tongue I fail to fully get the subtle semantics of "is shoddy but doesn't suck".
Actually I don't believe this is due to incapable programmers. System faults are often put on the developers. Maybe I'm wrong and out of coincidence, all capable remote control programmers came to decide to develop for systems like the Squeezebox and all the bad ones happened to develop UPnP remotes but I don't believe that's the case.

There's also a reason why CE companies do these bad implementations of their renderers and "out of coincidence" this reason is the same that kind of let down the Squeezebox product range over the last years: Software cost has to be calculated on the piece-price of the device which is something that simply doesn't work for products which have their functionality mainly defined through software or even backend services.
I could no go on and elaborate for a few hours why this is also why Apple and Microsoft make so much money but that would certainly be a bit OT here....

DLNA will go away.

tamanaco
2012-06-25, 08:16
As been said here, UPnP for video is fine if you keep away from large video playlists or very large categorized video libraries as I assume most people do... but for large categorized (carefully tagged) music libraries with long playlists the DLNA indexing mechanism leaves a lot to be desired. Searching using the tags is also limitted. I own a Revue (Logitech Google TV) and use a subset of my music library in MP3 format derived from my main FLAC library so that my wife can listen to music using the TV. I tried and failed to maintain a "reliable" music playing setup using a UPnP/DLNA players and servers. I tried LMS with the DLNA server enabled and with the Whitebear server (Whitebear being very reliable), but always found issues related to the UPnP players being unable to maintain a reliable index of the library. Using the Windows Media Player from a PC proved to be the most reliable. If another of my Windows computers with the DLNA server enabled entered the network the players (LMP, aVia, GTVBox) in the Revue would sometimes associate with the Windows computers instead of the LMS server. Indexing would have to be started from scratch every time some communication issue occurred or whenever indexing glitches came up during simple library updates... like adding a new album. Of course, this would always happen when my wife had friends over and wanted to play some music using the Revue. I found that most of players that I tried lacked a settings granularity flexible enough to allow me to display and search my library as I wanted. To make a long story short, I opted to upload my MP3 library to the Google cloud and use Google Music as a player in the Revue instead. It took a long time to upload, but no more indexing issues. The library is rendered quickly with all its album art and all the main tags are displayed correctly.

AndrewFG
2012-06-25, 14:23
No, it's just my opinion after spending quite a bit of time on the topic over the last year. It's overly complex, uses badly performing interfaces like SOAP and the architecture is 1990ish not taking into account the realities of today's world.

Well, I have spent more than a "bit of time" on it; more like ten years (which probably explains why it is "1990ish"). And yes, it does take hard work to master the protocol; you need to actually read the documents; and you need to make an effort...


I especially do not believe that it's possible to do a well-performing controller-renderer model that does not have the CP on either the server or the renderer. I know there are extensions that would help but they are being supported by close to nobody.

I suppose belief is a matter of religion. The architecture considers three entities, the CP, the DMS and the DMR. Each such entity may be either on the same machine, or on another machine. The physical location does not make any difference...


I know good people who have tried hard to do multiroom-synchronization with UPnP and who have failed and reverted to proprietary solutions instead.

I don't doubt they are good people. If you want to do multi-player sync in UPnP then you have to either A) implement the UPnP push streaming model, and or B) implement the SyncPlay(), SyncStop() and SyncPause() actions. Your "good" people seem to be implementing the UPnP pull streaming model (HTTP GET), and also implementing only the (non sync'ed) Play(), Stop() and Pause() actions. And these good people then start to yammer about UPnP not supporting sync'ed play... C'mon, get real!!


At best it's a data source protocol. Which is why it works for video where this is actually all you need. No need for gapless transitions between movies and you also rarely queue up dozens of them at a time. Plus your CP is usually on the renderer, after all, you do already have a screen.

As mentioned before, the location of the CP is irrelevant. And, I am sorry to say it, but the gapless play " issue" comes back down to your "good" people. If you want to do gapless play in UPnP, then you need to implement both the SetAvTransportUri() action AND the SetAvNextTransportUri() action. Anyone who ignores implementing the SetAvNextTransportUri() action, (or who does not even know what it means), has no authority to yammer about UPnP not supporting gapless playback.

And, by the way, in case you raise the "issue" that UPnP does not support playlists, let me correct you. In UPnP a CP can send (for example) an .M3U playlist to a DMR using the SetAvTransportUri() action; and the DMR can then autonomously play through that playlist (gaplessly) even if the CP goes away...


DLNA will go away.

I am betting it won't...

bluegaspode
2012-06-25, 14:50
Andrew,

how many UPnP renderers do you know, which fully support the specification, so that people can really enjoy sync + gapless playback?

I only had one encounter of UPnP, which was my Samsung TV where I wasn't able to play a single song of my library. And a program called plugplayer, which crashed multiple times and seemed to be very slow.
I only tested with LMS (and the integrated UPnP server of the FritzBox) though - so maybe Logitech is to blame for my bad experience.

pippin
2012-06-25, 15:30
Well, I have spent more than a "bit of time" on it; more like ten years (which probably explains why it is "1990ish"). And yes, it does take hard work to master the protocol; you need to actually read the documents; and you need to make an effort...

Believe me, I read the specs. Most of them at least. And I did make an effort. I even implemented some of the more obscure parts of the spec myself, I know it quite a bit by now.


I suppose belief is a matter of religion. The architecture considers three entities, the CP, the DMS and the DMR. Each such entity may be either on the same machine, or on another machine. The physical location does not make any difference...

That's what the theory and the spec says. Real life, however, says that you want to have your CP OFF for 99% of the time and that doesn't work with DLNA, at least not with how it's implemented in >>99% of the renderers and a "standard" which has it's implementation fail in >>99% of the installations IMHO is a failed standard. Yes, you can call this religious.


I don't doubt they are good people. If you want to do multi-player sync in UPnP then you have to either A) implement the UPnP push streaming model, and or B) implement the SyncPlay(), SyncStop() and SyncPause() actions. Your "good" people seem to be implementing the UPnP pull streaming model (HTTP GET), and also implementing only the (non sync'ed) Play(), Stop() and Pause() actions.

Nope. They started just like you and then they learned that life, unfortunately, is not according to the spec and scrapped it after puttin g a lot of work into it.

The spec says


The pre-condition is that the different MediaServers and MediaRenderers in the home are synchronized to the same master clock and support the appropriate clock synchronization protocol (such as NTP, IEEE 802.1AS).

which equals to "Our spec is perfect. It's your job, dear developer, through the use of unobtainium, to guarantee the ridiculous preconditions we set for this system to work. If you just do that, you will see that it works perfectly".

Apart from that even this is not true because there is no way in the protocol to compensate for clock drift which would even be an issue if you managed to actively synchronize your clocks because this very synchronization requires you to re-sync the audio, too.

Push streaming, btw, is another case of "unobtainium". I'm not talking theoretical setups here, I'm talking real world CE devices.

Name one implementation where this works.


C'mon, get real!!

86atc250r
2012-06-26, 18:47
Sorry to get away from the UPnP / DLNA discussion but.....

If Logitech was to pull the plug on mysqueezebox.com, I'm guessing there's enough programming talent and motivation in the community that a workable solution to mysqueezebox.com would become a reality pretty quickly if push came to shove. Who knows where it might go from there.... I've seen it happen in smaller communities already. The geeks will find a solution, we always do.

What a great platform. I can't believe after all these years, there still isn't really anything that touches the flexibility of these boxes in allowing me to listen to what I want, how I want.

korny@sietsma.com
2012-06-27, 00:09
Jumping in here, because I lost my Squeezebox in a breakup, so have been
playing with UPnP a bit (it seems I'd have to spend $500 on a Squeezebox
Touch if I wanted to go back to Squeezeboxes? Seems like paying a lot for
features I don't really need)

Anyway, I've been pretty impressed by how many things actually do DNLA/UPnP
quite well:

- The DNLA server on my Synology NAS is very nice, works well, an
impressive web-based UI, and has managed to serve up pretty well all
content I throw at it.

- The UPnP player built in to my TV (Samsung something) is rubbish and
would play almost nothing

- I bought a $130 WD-TV player, and it does all things UPnP quite nicely,
happily streams 1080p movies to my TV. Audio browsing is OK, not anywhere
as good as the SqueezeServer of course.

- It turns out my amplifier has a built in audio-only UPnP player, which is
neat (It's a Pioneer VSX-921) - it plays audio nicely, without needing a TV
running (a limitation of the WD-TV). The interface is poor, but I can
control it pretty well from my tablet (more on this below).

- I also have a FritzBox modem but haven't tried it's UPnP server because I
haven't had the need.

- I have a Galaxy Tab (android tablet), I've tried two players, Bubble UPnP
and UPnPlay - both seem to work OK, for streaming low-def video and audio,
and also to control other devices - this is how I play music on my amp,
using UPnPlay to queue up music. HD video seems to not work so well, not
sure if it's a bandwidth issue or decoding speed.

- I haven't found a decent UPnP player for my Macbook - VLC has one but it
crashes trying to browse my server.

The big things I miss from the SqueezeBox are:
- iTunes playlist integration - haven't found a way to get the NAS to
recognize my iTunes playlists yet
- The UIs are useable, but pretty poor compared to SlimServer / the
Squeezebox.

(I have my old slimp3 in a box somewhere - tempted to see if it still
works, it might be all I need)

- Korny

On 26 June 2012 07:50, bluegaspode <
bluegaspode.5eqj4n (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com> wrote:

>
> Andrew,
>
> how many UPnP renderers do you know, which fully support the
> specification, so that people can really enjoy sync + gapless playback?
>
> I only had one encounter of UPnP, which was my Samsung TV where I wasn't
> able to play a single song of my library. And a program called
> plugplayer, which crashed multiple times and seemed to be very slow.
> I only tested with LMS (and the integrated UPnP server of the FritzBox)
> though - so maybe Logitech is to blame for my bad experience.
>
>
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> bluegaspode's Profile:
> http://forums.slimdevices.com/member.php?userid=31651
> View this thread: http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=95603
>
>

erland
2012-06-27, 02:05
So, just to investigate this a bit further, to make sure I don't make any conclusions based on guesses.

My current setup looks like this:
- A Squeezebox Radio in my bedroom which is used as alarm clock in the mornings and listening to music while going to sleep or waking up. Automatic turn of after a certain interval in the evening is nice but powering on and playing music at a specific time in the morning is a must. I mostly listen to dynamic smart playlists playing either random tracks from the favorite parts of my library or random tracks among those recently purchased. It's always controlled with the buttons on the Radio itself, never from a remote control as those tends to be somewhere else when the alarm triggers in the morning and I don't want to get out of the bed.
- A Squeezebox Touch in the listening room connected via analogue connections to the Sherwood receiver (neither supports AirPlay nor UPnP). This player is controlled either with a Harmony IR remote or an iPad, IR remote if I just want to play a smart playlist and iPad if I want to browse the library and try to find something specific to play.
- A Squeezebox Boom in the kitchen which is used now and then to play music, both smart playlists and specific albums. Sometimes controlled with the buttons directly on the Boom but mostly using an iPad or iPhone.

(I've more players than the ones described above, but it's only the above ones I consider to be critical)

- Audio quality is important in listening room but less important in the other rooms.
- Available space is restricted in bedroom and kitchen, so the devices in these rooms can't be much bigger than the Radio and Boom I have today.
- All players needs to be able to play both files on my central NAS (QNAP) and Spotify tracks, currently it's handled via a Linux server running LMS.
- The local files on the NAS are all in FLAC format, so support for FLAC is a must.
- I rarely sync players, it sometimes happens between kitchen and listening room but this is not a critical functionality for me.
- The setup needs to be stable and I rarely have crashes in the current setup and I like to keep that situations. Reboots/restarts with an interval of a month or so is ok as I do this already today when upgrading server software or player firmware.
- Support for Internet radio except for Spotify is nice but not a must, support for Spotify is a strict requirement.
- Gapless playback is nice but not a strict requirement.
- I don't want to be forced to turn on TV to listen to music in the listening room, the kitchen and bedroom doesn't even have a TV so there a TV controlled devices isn't even an option.
- Regarding smart playlists it doesn't need to be that advanced but as a minimum I need to be able to:
-- Exclude tracks I rarely want to hear but still want to keep in my library
-- Restrict the playlist to tracks added during the last two months

For my personal setup any software have to run either on Mac or Linux as that's all I have, but let's not restrict the answers to this as Windows still is pretty popular as desktop/laptop computers among other users.


Now, let's say I would like to replace all this setup with something completely based on UPnP, are there any recommendations from someone that believes in UPnP and know it's possible to accomplish something that works with UPnP ?
Is it even possible to accomplish something similar with a UPnP based solution ?
In that case what hardware/software do I need to get ?

Don't restrict the answers to what I currently have, to make it easy let's assume I don't have anything and want to accomplish a system like described above based on UPnP.

AndrewFG
2012-06-27, 10:59
Now, let's say I would like to replace all this setup with something completely based on UPnP, are there any recommendations from someone that believes in UPnP and know it's possible to accomplish something that works with UPnP ?
Is it even possible to accomplish something similar with a UPnP based solution ?
In that case what hardware/software do I need to get ?


Well, I would suggest two solutions:

Case A. If you want a pure UPnP only environment:
- Use J. River Media Center as your main media server and Control Point
- Use whatever UPnP hardware players that take your fancy. You could select from some of the previous poster's suggestions, or look at J. River's "Media Network" forums for discussions about what players work and what do not.

Case B. If you want to keep your Squeezeboxes and add UPnP players and/or Control Points too:
- Use LMS as your main media server
- Use Whitebear i) to integrate your LMS media library into the UPnP world, and ii) to integrate your Squeeze Players into the UPnP world.

In both of the above cases, you can have one (or more) tablet or PC based Control Point applications. In case B you need at least one Control Point application. If you are in the Windows world you can use Windows Media Player 12, Asset Control, J. River (used as Control Point only), or Kinsky. Another candidate that I know about, but do not use is XBMC. If you are in the tablet world, there are many choices depending on what OS your machine runs. On the iPad I have Kinsky loaded and also PlugPlay (but to be honest I use iPeng to control the Squeezeplayers directly). Also the previous poster has suggested a few other UPnP Control Points for tablets.

I admit that Whitebear is Windows platform specific. Personally I use a small Atom based black box Windows machine (a Shuttle) that runs LMS and Whitebear.

Note that there are basically two types of Control Points:

a) A few Control Points (the only examples that I know of are J. River and WMP12) create a local image of the attributes of your library. Such CPs create their own browsing experience and have more powerful sorting and searching tools. But when first run, they take a while to browse through your whole library (in a background process) to create the local attributes image of the library. Obviously the local image requires some memory.

b) Other Control Points (almost any other one than the above mentioed) use a dynamic page-by-page tree based browse algorithm. In such CPs, the browse tree is structured by the server. In the case of Whitebear, it presents the standard LMS top level browse tree Artists, Albums, Genres, Years, Folders, PlayLists, etc. including whatever Favorites and Playlists you may have defined using the Logitech standard UI. And it also has an option (admittedly normally turned off) to present the standard LMS Add-Ins folders (Radio, Podcasts, Apps) in its browse tree. These CPs don't store anything locally (browse tree pages are served one-by-one) and so they can run on light weight machines like phones or tablets. Here is a screenshot from (for example) Kinsky:

13543

If you specifically want gapless playback then J. River (acting as either Control Point or main library server) plus Whitebear (front end to the Squeeze players) are to be recommended.

erland
2012-06-27, 11:47
Well, I would suggest two solutions:

- Is smart playlists supported if I control the player with a tablet and use JRiver Media Center as server ?
- Is Dynamic Playlist plugin provided smart playlists supported if I use Whitebear ?
- Do you know if Spotify is supported in any UPnP players ? If it are, are those players possible to control with an external UPnP Control Point ?

I've tried PlugPlayer and it's was way to buggy for my taste, but I used it towards LMS built-in UPnP server so possibly the crashes can have been caused, thanks for the tips of the other tablet apps, will take a look and see if any of them works better.



On the iPad I have Kinsky loaded and also PlugPlay (but to be honest I use iPeng to control the Squeezeplayers directly)

Why do you use iPeng instead of a UPnP controller ?
Is it because there isn't anything with the same functionality using UPnP or is there some other reason ?

AndrewFG
2012-06-27, 13:54
- Is smart playlists supported if I control the player with a tablet and use JRiver Media Center as server ?

Sorry Erland, but I don't know what you mean by a "smart playlist"?



- Is Dynamic Playlist plugin provided smart playlists supported if I use Whitebear ?

Not currently. This is because your plugin presents itself in the top level menu of the LMS Web UI, and this makes it difficult for me to support. I don't know your plugin well enough to be sure, but I am guessing that if the dynamic playlist would present itself (say under PlayLists) as a regular "track" (having a specific "virtual" track_id) then a UPnP CP could command LMS, via Whitebear and the CLI, to play that "track" as if it would be a real one. Or alternatively perhaps if it would present itself as a remote stream (having an http url) under Apps, then a UPnP CP could command LMS, via Whitebear and the CLI, to play that "stream". And if it would present as a stream rather than a track, the extra added value would be that this stream could also be played on any other regular UPnP player device. Obviously I don't want to hard code anything in Whitebear, so one would have to find a dynamic way to step down the browse tree (as it already does in the case of Apps, Podcasts, Radio).



- Do you know if Spotify is supported in any UPnP players ? If it are, are those players possible to control with an external UPnP Control Point ?

I don't know much about Spotify, so I don't know if there are any UPnP players that support it natively. But even though I don't have a Spotify Account, I can tell you that with Whitebear, I was able to browse down to "Andrew's Music->Add-Ins->Apps->Spotify->I don't have an account"..., so I am guessing the chances are not bad that if I did have an account, I should be able to browse further down the tree until I got to a playable remote stream. And if that would be so, then one could use any UPnP CP with Whitebear as the server to play Spotify either to a Squeeze player or indeed to any other UPnP player. (Although not knowing Spotify, I can't say if there may be authentication issues if Whitebear/LMS would be the browsing agent, and another device (having a different IP address) would then try to play the stream. It might depend on things like NAT...)


I've tried PlugPlayer and it's was way to buggy for my taste, but I used it towards LMS built-in UPnP server so possibly the crashes can have been caused, thanks for the tips of the other tablet apps, will take a look and see if any of them works better.

Yes, it is indeed buggy.



Why do you use iPeng instead of a UPnP controller ?
Is it because there isn't anything with the same functionality using UPnP or is there some other reason ?
Well basically I like iPeng. And as I already have a way to go iPeng->LMS->SqueezePlayer then why would I want to take the longer path OtherCP->Whitebear->LMS->SqueezePlayer ??

erland
2012-06-27, 14:01
Sorry Erland, but I don't know what you mean by a "smart playlist"?

Minimum requirement would be possibility to have an automatic playlist that either:

- Contains all tracks in my library except for those I've marked it to ignore. The ignore can be accomplished with low ratings or something similar, doesn't matter as long it works. I don't want to have to manually update the playlist, when I add new music to the library it should automatically be added to it. The tracks in the playlist should be in random order.

or

- Contains all tracks which I've added to the library during last 2 months. The playlist should be updated automatically when a track gets older then 2 months or when new music is added to the library. The tracks in the playlist should be in random order.

Basically I'm looking at some kind of minimal sub set of what Dynamic Playlist + SQL Playlist plugins achieves.

AndrewFG
2012-06-27, 14:15
Minimum requirement would be possibility to have an automatic playlist that either:

- Contains all tracks in my library except for those I've marked it to ignore. The ignore can be accomplished with low ratings or something similar, doesn't matter as long it works. I don't want to have to manually update the playlist, when I add new music to the library it should automatically be added to it. The tracks in the playlist should be in random order.

or

- Contains all tracks which I've added to the library during last 2 months. The playlist should be updated automatically when a track gets older then 2 months or when new music is added to the library. The tracks in the playlist should be in random order.

Basically I'm looking at some kind of minimal sub set of what Dynamic Playlist + SQL Playlist plugins achieves.
Yes, I think that J. River should be able to do both of the above two things. Caveat: I personally did not test it beyond checking that it can create things called "smart playlists" that dynamically play tracks based on various standard sets of rules (e.g. ratings, recently played, added etc.) => Perhaps you can get a trial version and test this yourself? (Or ask on http://yabb.jriver.com/interact/index.php )

erland
2012-06-27, 14:20
I don't know much about Spotify, so I don't know if there are any UPnP players that support it natively. But even though I don't have a Spotify Account, I can tell you that with Whitebear, I was able to browse down to "Andrew's Music->Add-Ins->Apps->Spotify->I don't have an account"..., so I am guessing the chances are not bad that if I did have an account, I should be able to browse further down the tree until I got to a playable remote stream. And if that would be so, then one could use any UPnP CP with Whitebear as the server to play Spotify either to a Squeeze player or indeed to any other UPnP player. (Although not knowing Spotify, I can't say if there may be authentication issues if Whitebear/LMS would be the browsing agent, and another device (having a different IP address) would then try to play the stream. It might depend on things like NAT...)

The issue with Spotify is that I don't think it expose a http url, it just expose a spotify identity and the player have to understand that and use Spotify API on the player side to get the audio data. Is something like that possible through UPnP or does UPnP require that the server provides a http url to the player for the player to be able to play the music ?

Theoretically it might work with Triode's plugin as I think it expose a http URL, but in practice it doesn't work because I think Triode had to disallow streaming to non Squeezebox hardware because of Spotify licensning restrictions to ensure it's not possible to rip the streams.

I could probably try by myself but the issue is that I currently don't have a Windows machine so it requires a bit of work to setup a Windows machine to be able to run Whitebear just to try. If someone else seeing this thread have access to Spotify and are using Whitebear, please let me know if it works or not.

erland
2012-06-27, 14:24
Yes, I think that J. River should be able to do both of the above two things. Caveat: I personally did not test it beyond checking that it can create things called "smart playlists" that dynamically play tracks based on various standard sets of rules (e.g. ratings, recently played, added etc.)

Perhaps you can get a trial version and test this yourself? (Or ask on http://yabb.jriver.com/interact/index.php )

For me personally JRiver isn't an option as it only runs on the OS(windows) which I don't use, just thought I'd ask in case someone else reading this thread is interesting of a UPnP only setup using JRiver.

AndrewFG
2012-06-27, 16:37
The issue with Spotify is that I don't think it expose a http url, it just expose a spotify identity and the player have to understand that and use Spotify API on the player side to get the audio data. Is something like that possible through UPnP or does UPnP require that the server provides a http url to the player for the player to be able to play the music ?

Virtually all UPnP players can play http lpcm streams or http mp3 streams, so that would be ideal. Anything exotic would require some form of transcoding proxy in between; that is not impossible, but it is very specific to the Spotify service provider, so not very motivating to do...

pippin
2012-06-28, 00:20
Spotify uses Ogg and it's encrypted, you need libspotify to decrypt it.
How do you usually handle Ogg or FLAC?

AndrewFG
2012-06-28, 00:33
The issue with Spotify is that I don't think it expose a http url, it just expose a spotify identity and the player have to understand that and use Spotify API on the player side to get the audio data. Is something like that possible through UPnP or does UPnP require that the server provides a http url to the player for the player to be able to play the music ?

More thoughts on this:

Most App plug-ins in LMS expose urls with a custom protocol scheme (e.g. aardvark://... instead of http://... ) and the plugin includes a protocol handler that knows how to interpret this protocol scheme; i.e. it knows how authenticate the user, fetch track meta data and cover art, and download the music stream.

Therefore I am pretty sure that a UPnP CP served by Whitebear would be able to navigate down such an App's browse tree until it reaches a leaf containing such a custom track url; and it would then be able to handle a UPnP Play To command to play such track on a Squeeze player, since the plug-in's protocol handler could handle all the mechanics.

But on the other hand, a UPnP Play To command targetted at a regular (non Logitech) UPnP player would almost certainly fail since the respective player would not have a handler for that custom protocol.

{ note: the current Whitebear release is hard coded to reject non http://... urls, so I would have to adapt it to be more generous about accepting such custom schemes... }

erland
2012-06-28, 00:54
More thoughts on this:

Most App plug-ins in LMS expose urls with a custom protocol scheme (e.g. aardvark://... instead of http://... ) and the plugin includes a protocol handler that knows how to interpret this protocol scheme; i.e. it knows how authenticate the user, fetch track meta data and cover art, and download the music stream.

Therefore I am pretty sure that a UPnP CP served by Whitebear would be able to navigate down such an App's browse tree until it reaches a leaf containing such a custom track url; and it would then be able to handle a UPnP Play To command to play such track on a Squeeze player, since the plug-in's protocol handler could handle all the mechanics.

The problem is that Spotify doesn't allow anyone to send their streams unencrypted over the network.
- Logitech's Spotify plugins solves this by letting the player access libspotify API and stream to the player directly from Spotify.
- Triode's Spotfy can transcode it but to avoid licensing troubles it doesn't permit an unknown software player to play the transcoded streams, so I don't think you will be able to use that to send it to a random UPnP playback device.

So basically, I guess it means that if a UPnP solution should support online streaming services like Spotify the UPnP player (MediaRenderer) will have to have native support for calling libspotify API ?

The issue with this is that Spotify isn't alone that works this way, many online streaming services are forced by the recording companies to protect any stream they expose to ensure it isn't possible to rip it, basically ensure it's not possible to send it to a playback device which haven't been explicitly authenticated with the streaming service. So since online streaming services is the future, it feels like UPnP has to have support for things like this if it want to be the future solution for music streaming. Else it will only be the future for locally stored music and that's something that's likely going to be less and less common, especially among the masses.

And for it to work in an environment with UPnP devices from various manufacturers, there has to be a standard definition to how Spotify streams should be exposed, because the above means that the media server must expose them in such way that they can be understood by a player from another manufacturer. If it's not in the standard it's simply not going to work in an environment with UPnP devices from multiple manufacturers.



{ note: the current Whitebear release is hard coded to reject non http://... urls, so I would have to adapt it to be more generous about accepting such custom schemes... }

No problem, I was wondering more about what's possible through UPnP than what works specifically in Whitebear, thanks for the information, I appreciate it.

AndrewFG
2012-06-28, 00:55
How do you usually handle Ogg or FLAC?

The UPnP server side of Whitebear offers tracks in: lpcm (transcoded), mp3 (transcoded), and native (if native is not already mp3), and the remote UPnP player can decide, depending on its capabilities, which of those three offers it chooses to download and play.

Note: lpcm is the common "must support" format for all UPnP servers and players to guarantee that music can always be streamed between servers and players at CD quality (16bit, <=2channel, 44100/ 48000Hz)

The UPnP renderer side of Whitebear accepts tracks in: lpcm, mp3, wav, aiff and flac. (And the latter three at <= 24bit, <=2channel, <= 192000Hz)

pippin
2012-06-28, 01:07
So you transcode FLAC or OGG to mp3 and lpcm?

AndrewFG
2012-06-28, 01:18
So since online streaming services is the future, it feels like UPnP has to have support for things like this if it want to be the future solution for music streaming. Else it will only be the future for locally stored music and that's something that's likely going to be less and less common, especially among the masses.

Indeed. A very precise observation.

Principally the UPnP Digital Media Standard allows extensions beyond the currently supported http:// and rtsp:// url schemes. In technical terms, an extension is trivial to implement. The real difficulty would be in getting device manufacturers and service providers around a table to define and agree on the respective scheme. So it is probably more of a corporate political challenge than a technical one.

Nevertheless, the UPnP Digital Media Standard does miss an explicit mechanism for securely passing Digital Media encryption keys and authentication tokens between devices and servers. The base standard does have a Device Security service that would provide the underlying encrypted comms infrastucture (think of UPnP DevSec as something like the https:// transport). But the Digital Media people would need agree on their industry specific security objects (digital rights certificates, tokens, keys) that would be conveyed over the DevSec service. This is more complex, since it would involve a lot of crypto guys and lawyers as well.

AndrewFG
2012-06-28, 01:28
Believe me, I read the specs. Most of them at least. And I did make an effort. I even implemented some of the more obscure parts of the spec myself, I know it quite a bit by now.
Ok, pippin, I did not mean to put you down.

But, (I don't want to brag about it this), I would point out that I was a member in the working groups that wrote the UPnP Home Automation specifications and also the Device Security specifications, and indeed I was the prime author for a couple of the SCPs for home automation. And I am the author of the Whitebear DMS and DMR too. So I think I can safely claim to know the theory and the practice of UPnP pretty well.

pippin
2012-06-28, 01:39
Good. I don't doubt you know UPnP better than me.
Now give me one or two examples of devices that can do multiroom sync using UPnP

erland
2012-06-28, 02:18
Indeed. A very precise observation.

Principally the UPnP Digital Media Standard allows extensions beyond the currently supported http:// and rtsp:// url schemes. In technical terms, an extension is trivial to implement. The real difficulty would be in getting device manufacturers and service providers around a table to define and agree on the respective scheme. So it is probably more of a corporate political challenge than a technical one.

Nevertheless, the UPnP Digital Media Standard does miss an explicit mechanism for securely passing Digital Media encryption keys and authentication tokens between devices and servers. The base standard does have a Device Security service that would provide the underlying encrypted comms infrastucture (think of UPnP DevSec as something like the https:// transport). But the Digital Media people would need agree on their industry specific security objects (digital rights certificates, tokens, keys) that would be conveyed over the DevSec service. This is more complex, since it would involve a lot of crypto guys and lawyers as well.

Thanks for the information, it's good to know that the UPnP standard is prepared for it.
Now I'm just getting a bit worried the music industry will ensure we will end up with something like HDCP that causes even more struggling and incompatibilities for end consumers.

Do you know if the music industry is working on agreeing regarding this and apply it to their UPnP solutions ?
Do you know if streaming providers such as Spotify, Rdio, Rhapsody and similar are involved ?

This got to be a problem also for video, we are getting more and more commercial online streaming services for video which also currently seems to be mostly built on proprietary solutions instead of using UPnP. I'm thinking of Netflix, Hulu, Voddler and similar services, they currently don't use UPnP, do they ?

From my perspective this incompatibility with online streaming services is a lot bigger issue for UPnP than gapless playback and synchronized playback between different rooms which is often brought up as the main arguments against UPnP. Gapless playback and synchronized playback between different rooms might be nice, but I'm pretty sure they are not critical features for 80% of the users, support for online streaming services on the other hand is going to be very critical functionality for most of the users.

AndrewFG
2012-06-28, 03:54
So you transcode FLAC or OGG to mp3 and lpcm?
Yes.

As mentioned before, the media server side of Whitebear offers each track in 3 formats lpcm, mp3 and native (e.g. flac). And the player is free to select which one of those three offers it wants to download. If the player selects a format that needs transcoding then Whitebear harnesses LMS already installed transcoding helper applications (faad.exe, flac.exe, sox.exe, lame.exe etc.) to do the work.

AndrewFG
2012-06-28, 04:38
Now give me one or two examples of devices that can do multiroom sync using UPnP

I don't know of any such devices. But to be honest I have not surveyed the player market very much.

My point is that it is wrong to blame the specification for such lack of multi-player sync; instead one should blame the manufacturers for not implementing the relevant parts of the specification.

pippin
2012-06-28, 04:49
My point is that it is wrong to blame the specification for such lack of multi-player sync; instead one should blame the manufacturers for not implementing the relevant parts of the specification.

OK, so we just have to disagree. You assume that virtually all manufacturers are too dumb to just implement the brilliant spec (I know at least one manufacturer personally who tried to and failed) while I believe that a spec that is obviously so complex that people don't manage to make it work is failed.

Maybe it's just a matter of perspective but I'd like to point out that as of now we have several independent implementation of the Squeezebox synchronization protocol around here and that doesn't even have a spec, but maybe bluegaspode and James (who did iPeng's sync) and all the others here are simply brighter than all the other consumer electronics developers out there.

_I_ tend to believe that the protocol is simply easier to implement.

AndrewFG
2012-06-28, 06:02
Thanks for the information, it's good to know that the UPnP standard is prepared for it.
Now I'm just getting a bit worried the music industry will ensure we will end up with something like HDCP that causes even more struggling and incompatibilities for end consumers.

Do you know if the music industry is working on agreeing regarding this and apply it to their UPnP solutions ?
Do you know if streaming providers such as Spotify, Rdio, Rhapsody and similar are involved ?

This got to be a problem also for video, we are getting more and more commercial online streaming services for video which also currently seems to be mostly built on proprietary solutions instead of using UPnP. I'm thinking of Netflix, Hulu, Voddler and similar services, they currently don't use UPnP, do they ?

From my perspective this incompatibility with online streaming services is a lot bigger issue for UPnP than gapless playback and synchronized playback between different rooms which is often brought up as the main arguments against UPnP. Gapless playback and synchronized playback between different rooms might be nice, but I'm pretty sure they are not critical features for 80% of the users, support for online streaming services on the other hand is going to be very critical functionality for most of the users.

Here is the UPnP forum membership list: http://upnp.org/membership/list/ -- I don't see any media companies (except possibly Sony). But it is interesting that http://www.pv.com is one of the steering commitee members, alongside the hardware guys...

Here is a quote from the UPnP AV Architecture document:


The UPnP AV Architecture was explicitly defined to meet the following goals:
- To support arbitrary transfer protocols and content formats.
-To enable the AV content to flow directly between devices without any intervention from the control point.
- To enable control points to remain independent of any particular transfer protocol and content format. This allows control points to transparently support new protocols and formats.
- Scalability, i.e. support of devices with very low resources, especially memory and processing power as well as full-featured devices.
- Synchronized playback to multiple rendering devices.
- Access Control, Content Protection, and Digital Rights Management

pippin
2012-06-28, 06:32
But it is interesting that http://www.pv.com is one of the steering commitee members, alongside the hardware guys...


What is interesting here? They bought Twonky, who make what still probably is the most ubiquitous server SW used in many embedded devices, not really a surprise I would think.

bluegaspode
2012-06-28, 06:59
but maybe bluegaspode and James (who did iPeng's sync) and all the others here are simply brighter than all the other consumer electronics developers out there.

_I_ tend to believe that :D

I'm still wondering if I could beat PlugPlayer with my own App, but I am very very reluctant if I should really try or if I'd stumble into a can of worms of not correctly implemented renderers. And then a spec would not be a big value at all.
Then the working mode is like with Squeezeboxes - take the spec as a guideline but do a lot of reverse engineering. Fortunately Squeezeboxes all share the same codebase, the count UPnP renderers with all their quirks might be uncountable.

pippin
2012-06-28, 07:20
I have thought about that so many times, too.

Whenever it happens again I start PlugPlayer and have a look at the list of device types it searches for and the number of different ones that answer even on my network and then I'm cured again for a while...

AndrewFG
2012-06-28, 08:13
What is interesting here? They bought Twonky, who make what still probably is the most ubiquitous server SW used in many embedded devices, not really a surprise I would think.Oh. You are not surprised that such a company is investing in active support of what you consider to be an outdated and doomed standard and a hopeless waste of time and money (??).

pippin
2012-06-28, 09:12
In Twonky's case it's 100% of their business, so why would they not invest in it?
Or do you mean PachetVideo? I mean: they purchased Twonky 5 years ago and completely ruined the company and the product afterwards, hardly a measure for good investment. And do they have business worth the name apart from that?

A lot of companies invest money into things that are a hopeless waste of time and money, this is not a particular strange case, isn't it?

banned for life
2012-06-28, 16:45
The stability of the product will vastly improve.

bfl

pablolie
2012-06-30, 22:44
The key here is to define "work" - would the software continue to be officially worked on and thus available for new OS updates that, over time, are sure to obsolete any application frozen in time? No.

However, the way I see it, for the foreseeable future it is easy to create a dedicated appliance that can run the music environment for many years. That appliance is self-contained, can stay frozen in time OS-wise with the last official LMS release (should it come to that) and can be controlled/accessed via a web server. One could also use free software such as VMware Player (not an endorsement) to run an old OS and the LMS application on top of a newer machine and OS if needed (for as long as said virtualization software vendor supports the old OS, that is).

So I don't worry too much. I often wonder about all of the LMS upgrades I have done over the years - were they really necessary? Why not simply stay with an old, proven version? Honestly, the only new feature I ever required on the SBS/LMS software was support for new players or in rare cases error fixes (I don't remember which version utterly screwed up synchronization, that and making the wireless usable for Duet are the only upgrades I ever recall feeling I really needed).

I think some new technology development will eventually once again yet more fundamentally change the way I listen to music. I am not *that* old, but I feel my way of listening to music (relatively high end *stereo* system in a dedicated environment) relegates me to dinosaur status. :)

slimfast
2012-07-01, 03:16
The key here is to define "work" - would the software continue to be officially worked on and thus available for new OS updates that, over time, are sure to obsolete any application frozen in time? No.

However, the way I see it, for the foreseeable future it is easy to create a dedicated appliance that can run the music environment for many years. That appliance is self-contained, can stay frozen in time OS-wise with the last official LMS release (whould it come to that) and can be controlled/accessed via a web server. One copuld also use free software such as VMware Player (not an andorsement) to run an old OS and the LMS application on top of a newer machine and OS if needed (for as long as said virtualization software vendor supports the old OS, that is).

So I don't worry too much. I often wonders about all of the LMS upgrades I have done over the years - where they really necessary? Why not simply stay with an old, proven version? Honestly, the only new feature I ever required ion the SBS/LMS software was support for new players or in rare cases error fixes (I don't remember which version utterly screwed up synchronization, that and making the wireless usable are the only upgrades I ever recall feeling I really needed).

I think some new technology development will eventually once again yet more fundamentally change the way I listen to music. I am not *that* old, but I feel my way of listening to music (relatively high end *stereo* system in a dedicated environment) relegates me to dinosaur status. :)


Very much agree.

I run my main Squeezebox system with an old QNAP NAS and the endless upgrading of Slim Server/ Squeeze Center/ Squeezebox Server/ LMS/ whatever they are calling it this month has caused me many headaches. I can't say I've ever noticed any major improvements with any of the upgrades but they did frequently break the system and leave me without music, in some cases for weeks until I could get the time to figure out how to fix things.

The only ones that were worthwhile were when I needed to do so to access a specific service, like when Napster was taken over by Rhapsody.

Whereas the open nature of the system where you roll your own server hardware is flexible, they probably should have got something like the Squeezebox Touch with it's integral server capabilities out much earlier (only with beefier processor power). Then you could buy the Touch as the initial player and base the rest of the system around that.

MrSinatra
2012-07-02, 00:37
i have to say that my exps with upnp and DLNA are not overwhelmingly positive, but it does mostly work to some degree, just not usually elegant.

interestingly, thats exactly what i think of the squeezebox paradigm.

neither one is elegant.

by far, the single best thing about apple is airplay. i'm not an apple guy, i typically do not like their stuff or their hardware or the choices they make. but airplay IS elegant. airplay IS robust. airplay IS flexible. i mean, audio, video, computer, TV, tablets, handhelds, mirroring, streaming, local, online, it does it ALL and it does it even with everything in wifi. and the adapters are CHEAP. apple tv = $99. i mean, come on!

the problems with it don't bother most people, but do me. itunes is, for me, a non-starter. i won't use it. and there are some technical questions regarding the quality of apple hardware adapters and how they do their airplay magic that again, are for me, an obstacle, but for the vast majority, are not.

also notice how airplay is going into other companies products.

does anyone really believe that an audio product should exist today whose main/native UI is webui? i would bet most people still using server are using some other UI.

i hope logitech sells slim to someone else. i thought they'd be good for slim. i was WAY wrong.

ModelCitizen
2012-07-02, 00:50
i hope logitech sells slim to someone else. i thought they'd be good for slim. i was WAY wrong.
Logitech misunderstood this product and messed up development in so many ways. They could have really made something of it but they blew it, concentrating on the hardware and missing the bigger picture. I hope they sell it too, to a company that has imagination to realise it's potential. I don't think the boat has sailed just yet.

korny@sietsma.com
2012-07-02, 01:06
I tend to think, sadly, that for slim devices to make money, they need to
integrate video. Audio fans want their crisp neat audio interface, but I
think the mass market wants video as well - they want their downloaded
tv/movies, they want youtube and netflix and whatever else they are
watching.

I'd love something that was a hybrid of the Squeezebox with something like
the WD-TV (http://wdc.com/en/products/products.aspx?id=330), give it a
simple 2-line display like the old slimp3 for when the TV is off and you
just want audio, and a HDMI TV output for video or for more complex music
browsing, and the squeezeserver web interface for full power. I'd buy one!

(actually I'm not sure how you'd do audio with the tv off - the simplest
wiring uses HDMI to send audio as well as video, if you had separate audio
cabling it might not play well with HDMI devices.)

- Korny

On 2 July 2012 17:50, ModelCitizen <
ModelCitizen.5f2ewo (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com> wrote:

>
> MrSinatra wrote:
> >
> > i hope logitech sells slim to someone else. i thought they'd be good
> > for slim. i was WAY wrong.
> Logitech misunderstood this product and messed up development in so many
> ways. They could have really made something of it but they blew it,
> concentrating on the hardware and missing the bigger picture. I hope
> they sell it too, to a company that has imagination to realise it's
> potential. I don't think the boat has sailed just yet.
>
>
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> ModelCitizen's Profile:
> http://forums.slimdevices.com/member.php?userid=446
> View this thread: http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=95603
>
>

erland
2012-07-02, 02:14
does anyone really believe that an audio product should exist today whose main/native UI is webui? i would bet most people still using server are using some other UI.

No, I don't think an audio product whose main UI is web based have a strong future. To expand this even further, I don't think an audio product whose main UI has to be accessed from a computer have a strong future. In comparison, I think a web UI has a greater future than a Windows based UI, because there is at least a theoretical chance the web UI will work on tablets/smart phones.

However, the web UI is not the main UI for the Squeezebox products, the main UI for a Squeezebox is either a smart phone/tablet or the on-device controls (Touch screen, hard buttons) and this kind of UI's definitely have a future.

If we would have a poll among all Squeezebox users (not just the geeks on this forum), I imagine that a very small percentage would say that they sit beside the computer when they control their Squeezebox.



i hope logitech sells slim to someone else. i thought they'd be good for slim. i was WAY wrong.

In theory, Logitech provides what Slim Devices didn't have:
- Economical strength ( of a large company)
- Global distribution
- Knowledge about mass market users

In practice I see similar issues as you do, but the issue isn't the above points, the issues are other points like:
- Lack of product strategy
- Lack of knowledge regarding user needs around music streaming
- Lack of marketing/advertisement skills

Most of them were supposed to come from Slim Devices but unfortunately Logitech didn't succeed in keeping everyone from Slim Devices as Logitech employees.

It's not as simple as just dedicating more resources to the development, first they have to understand what kind of functionality the users want.

Regarding possibilities to sell to someone else, the only thing I see a real value in is:
- SBS/LMS (which is already open source and free for someone else to take)
- Agreements with service providers (which Logitech probably can't or at least aren't willing to sell)

So hoping for someone to suddenly buy Squeezebox product family is probably to hope too much unless someone in the community or among previous Slim Devices employees would decide it was of interest

erland
2012-07-02, 02:40
I tend to think, sadly, that for slim devices to make money, they need to
integrate video. Audio fans want their crisp neat audio interface, but I
think the mass market wants video as well - they want their downloaded
tv/movies, they want youtube and netflix and whatever else they are
watching.

I'd love something that was a hybrid of the Squeezebox with something like
the WD-TV (http://wdc.com/en/products/products.aspx?id=330), give it a
simple 2-line display like the old slimp3 for when the TV is off and you
just want audio, and a HDMI TV output for video or for more complex music
browsing, and the squeezeserver web interface for full power. I'd buy one!

(actually I'm not sure how you'd do audio with the tv off - the simplest
wiring uses HDMI to send audio as well as video, if you had separate audio
cabling it might not play well with HDMI devices.)

It has been said before, but I can say it again, audio and video is two completely different use cases. It can make sense to mix them in the same device in the living room, but it doesn't make sense to mix them in the player you want to have in the bedroom, kitchen and outside beside the pool in the garden.

The problem with audio+video devices is that they all tend to focus on video, so you will get a video device that also can do audio. AppleTV is a great example of this, works great as a video device and can also do audio but the audio part isn't its strong side. Still, in the living room, an AppleTV is a great solution, the issue is just that it's pretty useless in the bedroom, kitchen and outside in the garden where you usually might not have a TV.

However, if someone would like to create a music streaming solution for the living room, a combined device that supports video+audio might be an excellent solution, for a whole house music streaming solution I'm still very skeptical to these kind of combined devices. Of course, many (but not all) mass market users are probably going to be happy with a music streaming solution for the living room.

As a side note, something that sometimes occurs to me is that people on this forum seems to plan ahead a lot related to Squeezeboxes.
When we talk about Squeezebox products we worry that Logitech might shutdown the development soon and stop supporting the devices in a couple of years, but when looking at other products we don't do the same thing, is anyone sure that the WD-TV is going to be supported and sold 2 years in the future ? Does anyone know much product development WD did on WD-TV during the last 3 months ? Does anyone know what the next product in the WD-TV product family is going to be ?
WD-TV is just an example, you can pretty much say the same thing about any other mass market music streaming product on the market.

So, I guess what I'm saying is just that there might be reasons to be concerted about Logitech's commitment, but on the other hand we don't really know if anybody else (except for Sonos) is any better in this regard.

The Moog
2012-07-02, 06:14
With regard to worrying about what will become of the Squeezebox product line and the reasons behind this, surely it all comes down to investment?

The purchase of an £80 box to stream media to the TV requires little invested in either time or money; if the product line is discontinued by the time it breaks several years down the road you buy another one from another brand that does nominally the same thing, and you have had your use out of it. The worry for me with my Squeezeboxen is that I have invested much more in time and money to set up a whole-house system consisting of many various interoperable devices. The software seems to work well for me so I should be fine if this were never updated, but eventually the hardware will stop working and what do I do if it can't be directly replaced? Do I have to start from scratch with a completely different system at significant investment or do I limp along with a partially working setup?

Furthermore, and of more concern to Logitech and their bottom line, do I now invest any more in expanding the Squeezebox system that I have if I am worried that the range may be coming to an end? I would also say the the big difference with Sonos here is that wireless streamers are their core business; they are unlikely to stop making or supporting them unless their business fails. Logitech could pack up the Squeezebox line and continue on happily making mice and iPod docks.


The Moog

AndrewFG
2012-07-02, 07:08
The issue with Spotify is that I don't think it expose a http url, it just expose a spotify identity and the player have to understand that and use Spotify API on the player side to get the audio data. Is something like that possible through UPnP or does UPnP require that the server provides a http url to the player for the player to be able to play the music ?

Theoretically it might work with Triode's plugin as I think it expose a http URL, but in practice it doesn't work because I think Triode had to disallow streaming to non Squeezebox hardware because of Spotify licensning restrictions to ensure it's not possible to rip the streams.

Just for info, I signed up to Spotify, and have been trying it out with Whitebear using Triode's plug-in. And I can give the following feedback:

1) Browsing the ContentDirectory

There is no fundamental problem to map the Spotify (Triode) browse tree into the UPnP ContentDirectory browse tree. The UPnP ContentDirectory comprises two types of elements, namely "containers" (e.g. albums, or playlists) and "items" (e.g. tracks), and the Spotify (Triode) plug-in follows this paradigm nicely. (On the other hand, the Logitech plugin would be more difficult to map since it comprises entitities which may be both containers and items at the same time).

One thing that does not map from the Spotify (Triode) browse tree into the UPnP ContentDirectory browse tree, is the branch called "Search". The UPnP ContentDirectory supports two distinct actions called Browse and Search, whereas the Spotify (Triode) plugin merges these into a common browse tree UI. This means that the Spotify Search branch of the browse tree delivers nothing useful. A fully featured Control Point would have to split these two functions and route them accordingly.

2) Playing tracks on UPnP players via "Play To"

When the ContentDirectory (Media Server) and the player (Media Renderer) are hooked to the same LMS server, then there is no fundamental problem for the "Play To" function from the LMS server to a Squeeze player. The material flow looks a bit like this this

Browse Command Dialog : Spotify <=> Triode <=> LMS <=> Whitebear (ContentDirectory) <=> Control Point (Browser) ...
Play To Command Dialog : Control Point (PlayTo) <=> Whitebear (Renderer) <=> Triode (<=> Spotify) <=> LMS <=> Squeeze player
Binary Data Stream Flow : Spotify => Triode => LMS => Squeeze player

The reason why this can work is that the Spotify/Triode/LMS instance used for browsing is the same as the Spotify/Triode/LMS instance used for playing, and both parties share the same access and authentication with Spotify. So far so good...

On the other hand, it will be much more difficult (if not impossible) to do Play To a third party player as follows, because the 3rd Party UPnP Player lacks the Spotify access and authentication:

Browse Command Dialog : Spotify <=> Triode <=> LMS <=> Whitebear (ContentDirectory) <=> Control Point (Browse) ...
Play To Command Dialog : Control Point (PlayTo) <=> 3rd Party UPnP Player
Binary Data Stream Flow : ???

And indeed the only way I can think of making it work would be to interpose Whitebear as a proxy stream server as follows. (But it is possible that Spotify might not permit that...)

Browse Command Dialog : Spotify <=> Triode <=> LMS <=> Whitebear (ContentDirectory) <=> Control Point (Browse) ...
Play To Command Dialog : Control Point (PlayTo) <=> 3rd Party UPnP Player
Binary Data Stream Flow : Spotify => Triode => LMS => Whitebear (Proxy Server) => 3rd Party UPnP Player

erland
2012-07-02, 08:56
Just for info, I signed up to Spotify, and have been trying it out with Whitebear using Triode's plug-in. And I can give the following feedback:

1) Browsing the ContentDirectory

There is no fundamental problem to map the Spotify (Triode) browse tree into the UPnP ContentDirectory browse tree.


Sounds great, thanks for looking into it.



2) Playing tracks on UPnP players via "Play To"

When the ContentDirectory (Media Server) and the player (Media Renderer) are hooked to the same LMS server, then there is no fundamental problem for the "Play To" function from the LMS server to a Squeeze player.

Sounds great, thanks for looking into it.



And indeed the only way I can think of making it work would be to interpose Whitebear as a proxy stream server as follows. (But it is possible that Spotify might not permit that...)

Browse Command Dialog : Spotify <=> Triode <=> LMS <=> Whitebear (ContentDirectory) <=> Control Point (Browse) ...
Play To Command Dialog : Control Point (PlayTo) <=> 3rd Party UPnP Player
Binary Data Stream Flow : Spotify => Triode => LMS => Whitebear (Proxy Server) => 3rd Party UPnP Player

Yes, this is the issue, Spotify license says:


3.8 You understand and agree that use of the Service by Users is governed by the “Spotify Terms and Conditions of Use” and that the Application shall not enable any person to access or use the Service in any manner that is not permitted under the Spotify Terms and Conditions of Use. Without limiting the foregoing, you may not include any so-called "stream ripping" or other functionality in the Application that enables or makes it easier for Users to capture or otherwise make permanent copies of streamed content. You agree to cooperate with Spotify in pursuing any violations of the prohibition against ripping or other capture of streamed content.


I believe Triode has interpreted this as he is not allowed to permit unknown software players to read the streams he expose because in theory that can mean that a stream ripping software can act as a player and rip the stream which means that he would have violated the above section of the license agreement. I believe his plugin has two modes, one direct mode in which Spotify streams directly to the Squeezebox and one transcoded mode in which Spotify streams to Triodes Spotify plugin which streams to the player through SBS/LMS but only allows the stream to be passed to Squeezebox hardware players. However, I don't know the details, so check with Triode if you want to completely understand it.

For UPnP this probably means that there has to be some kind of mechanism where the UPnP MediaServer can guarantee that the stream can only be used by a UPnP MediaRender which have been authenticated with Spotify, and as I understood from your previous posts this is something that the standard people are working on but it's going to take time since it's more of a political and legal problem than a technical problem.

The whole point of using UPnP in my mind is if it allows me to mix players, controllers and servers from different manufacturers in the same system, if I'm forced to use only components from the same manufacturer I suspect I will be better of using their proprietary protocols.

AndrewFG
2012-07-02, 09:35
The whole point of using UPnP ... is if it allows me to mix players, controllers and servers from different manufacturers in the same system, if I'm forced to use only components from the same manufacturer I suspect I will be better of using their proprietary protocols.

Following is in my opinion a more accurate redaction of what you said...

The whole point of using UPnP ... is if it allows me to mix players, controllers and servers from different manufacturers, and to mix content from different content providers, in the same system, if I'm forced to use only components or content from the same manufacturer or content provider I suspect I will be better of using their proprietary protocols.

Unfortunately it does not lead to a happy conclusion about interopability. Either you go with Apple with (bindings on hardware and content); Or with UPnP (no bindings on hardware, but limitations on content); Or you go with something like the Squeezebox environment (bindings on hardware, some freedom of content); Or ??

erland
2012-07-02, 10:14
Following is in my opinion a more accurate redaction of what you said...

The whole point of using UPnP ... is if it allows me to mix players, controllers and servers from different manufacturers, and to mix content from different content providers, in the same system, if I'm forced to use only components or content from the same manufacturer or content provider I suspect I will be better of using their proprietary protocols.

Unfortunately it does not lead to a happy conclusion about interopability. Either you go with Apple with (bindings on hardware and content); Or with UPnP (no bindings on hardware, but limitations on content); Or you go with something like the Squeezebox environment (bindings on hardware, some freedom of content); Or ??

Agreed.

Since I have the devices to consume music, this means that I'll continue to choose the solution which doesn't restrict me regarding which content/content providers I can use, currently I think this means using Squeezebox or Sonos proprietary solutions. Where Squeezebox have the advantage due to their open architecture which allows me, you and other third party developers to add the missing pieces ourselves if Logitech doesn't do their jobb properly. I'm not sure Squeezebox would have been the preferred choice if all streaming services would have to go through mysqueezebox.com, fortunately we have the possibility to add support for streaming services also by installing plugins in LMS/SBS.

Hopefully we will get some kind of established standard in the future that allows us to also mix devices from different manufacturers, either UPnP or something else. However, unfortunately I'm a bit skeptical because with both Google, Amazon and Apple having their own music store they are all bound to try to get us to use their proprietary solutions to make us to use their music store instead of the ones provided by the competitors.

pablolie
2012-07-02, 20:24
It has been said before, but I can say it again, audio and video is two completely different use cases. It can make sense to mix them in the same device in the living room, but it doesn't make sense to mix them in the player you want to have in the bedroom, kitchen and outside beside the pool in the garden..

i would agree with *one* notable exception: album notes. that is the one thing i majorly miss from the days of buying albums. awareness about composers/contributors etc. i now control my SBs with my ipad but still no luck with the visual album notes integration. so there is space for better video with music.

MrSinatra
2012-07-02, 20:37
neither the apple TV nor the airport express has a display. the apple TV does connect to a TV obviously. but apple has determined that there is little to no need for the media adapter you connect to your other gear to have a display, and i agree with that. in most usage cases, its not needed or even desired.

your handheld, tablet, or TV can be the display.

so apple has both choices, audio only, for like $60, or audio + TV, for $99.

slim is dreaming to think the touch even has a place. the whole product line needs to be re-thought out.

jo-wie
2012-07-03, 00:26
n but apple has determined that there is little to no need for the media adapter you connect to your other gear to have a display, and i agree with that. in most usage cases, its not needed or even desired.

And I and my family are happy about to have an alternativ. For us is a control feature and display on the device a very usefull feature and we would miss it.

We can control the boxes via PC, Tablet, Smartphone, iPod, IR remote and device keys. But very often the direct device control is been used insted for digging for a mobile control device.

What's playing now is simply answered by have a look at the device display. TV is not running 24 hours and in every room here.

bernt
2012-07-03, 00:55
neither the apple TV nor the airport express has a display. the apple TV does connect to a TV obviously. but apple has determined that there is little to no need for the media adapter you connect to your other gear to have a display, and i agree with that. in most usage cases, its not needed or even desired.

your handheld, tablet, or TV can be the display.

so apple has both choices, audio only, for like $60, or audio + TV, for $99.

slim is dreaming to think the touch even has a place. the whole product line needs to be re-thought out.

For me a display and ir (or rf) is a must. Squeezebox is the only audio device that have what I want.

bluegaspode
2012-07-03, 02:58
This is also, why I (beside the price point) cannot switch to Sonos.

My wife wants to hit a button in the kitchen or bathroom to start the radio.
And my son (2 1/2) needs the 6 preset buttons to start his own tunes (yes - he is having is own Squeezebox already :) )

MrSinatra
2012-07-03, 08:38
in response to the posts above since mine, let me clarify...

i don't begrudge anyone a display if they want one with a display. but where is the SB ALONE with NO display? the SBR isn't sold alone anymore, right? and certainly isn't easy to setup if its all one has.

and again, while i don't begrudge it, i don't think most people need it [a small display on the device] or want it, esp at the price logitech puts it at. apple would seem to agree, and while i'm no apple fan, i think at this point one has to bow to their market research.

this is probably because most people don't need to see whats playing to know if they want to hear it or not, they merely listen to determine if they should skip the track or not.

i mean, first of all the price for slim stuff is ridiculous. lets start there. then consider what it costs to do up your house with that stuff, vs alternatives, be they apple or otherwise. then consider there is no video. then consider you can't connect to a TV. then consider that the screens on the devices, in most cases, are too small to see what they say unless you are nearly in arms reach anyway.

again, i don't begrudge anyone their own preferences, i surely have mine. but if we want to see the slim paradigm survive, i think it needs completely rethought out.

bonze
2012-07-03, 10:01
and again, while i don't begrudge it, i don't think most people need it [a small display on the device] or want it, esp at the price logitech puts it at. not everyone has a 'droid' or 'iThingy' so a screen becomes necessary.
I can't imagine how anyone could control an SB without some sort of visual feedback ???

MrSinatra
2012-07-03, 10:04
not everyone has a 'droid' or 'iThingy' so a screen becomes necessary.
I can't imagine how anyone could control an SB without some sort of visual feedback ???

no, not everyone does, but pretty much most everyone considering slim stuff do.

and the webui is how it would be done without one.

let me be clear, i support the option of having a self contained server with a display, b/c then you don't need anything else. i get that. but it should not be your MAIN product, but instead should be a high end niche filler in your lineup.

autopilot
2012-07-03, 10:29
...if we want to see the slim paradigm survive, i think it needs completely rethought out.

We can discuss individuals use cases forever, but essentially i think it comes down to one thing - profit. I cant see how it's really that profitable for Logitech. The money is in content these days, so unless Logitech get a significant cut of the Spotify/Last.FM/etc, i cant see it continuing personally. And even then, audio revenue streams are small compared to video. Many one last ditch attempt to rescue the line is on the cards, but if take up is not very high I'm extremely pessimistic about the Squeezebox's future. I hope i'm wrong, i really do.

A few years back i got laughed off the forum for suggesting a switch to Android. Is that still such a crazy idea?

jo-wie
2012-07-03, 12:51
this is probably because most people don't need to see whats playing to know if they want to hear it or not, they merely listen to determine if they should skip the track or not.

I agree but that was not the idea behind my words - just a display to see whats playing to dig further into unknown music.

Devices with displays can be the difference between the systems, if I need an Apple solution will I buy Apple. Why should be a Squeezebox the same as an Apple device? They can learn from Apple but a copy ... no please.

I agree with you that we need also some kind of new Receiver without display to complete a SYSTEM.

mlsstl
2012-07-03, 17:29
Interesting how many people in this thread seem to think they have unusual insight into what Logitech "should be" doing as respects their product line up.

As a profitable company that's been around for awhile, I strongly suspect they have more than a few people who know what they're doing when it comes to making a buck. I think the odds are pretty good that they've done some market research and have a good idea where they are going from here. Maybe they don't want to compete with the video streamers with sub $100 Rokus and the like. Sometimes a company finds it more profitable fulfilling a smaller niche than competing in a more congested, lower priced market.

Same thing with the video screen. Some portion of market would love a screenless player, but what's the percentage? Would those sales justify the design, production & distribution costs? Once again, we're pitting our rather biased individual preferences against a company that is in the business, has access to a lot more info, and is probably a shade more dispassionate about the whole matter.

Yes, there are any number of companies that I wish would bend the specifics of their product a bit more to my liking. Sometimes a company takes heed of customer input and sometimes they don't. It's just rather unrealistic to think that every idea I have is going to end up a high priority for a manufacturer.

I'm not in the consumer electronics field, but after 35 years in the business world I know that decisions often include quite a bit of info that is pretty much invisible to those on the outside. Sure, sometimes in hindsight a business may wish they'd made a different decision, but if they are successful in their industry, the overall odds lay on their side of the court.

MrSinatra
2012-07-03, 17:42
Indeed! Who are the unwashed masses to question the minds behind the mighty revue!?

mlsstl
2012-07-03, 18:30
Just love it when one gets a one-line reply that not only discusses nothing but also seems to illustrate that the poster didn't bother to read the entirety of the prior post.

pippin
2012-07-03, 18:33
No. You are wrong and MrSinatra pretty much nailed it, that's how it is.

You should also have a look at Logitech's financial reports as to "profitable company".

mlsstl
2012-07-03, 19:04
No. You are wrong and MrSinatra pretty much nailed it, that's how it is.

You should also have a look at Logitech's financial reports as to "profitable company".

Their 2011 report shows a profit of $128 million on sales of $2.3 billion, and a shareholder equity that increased over 20% to $1.2 billion.

Seems like they made a few bucks.

But, perhaps they need some new directors for product development & production. Sounds like we have some talent here in the forum ranks!

pippin
2012-07-03, 19:42
Their reporting year ends in Summer. Look at the 4 quarterly reports since then.
They discontinued Revue and fired their CEO in that period.
Happy and confident company.

JJZolx
2012-07-03, 20:21
They've also reorganized the company. Yet again. Seems they've done that about every 12-18 months since buying Slim Devices. I have no idea what they now call the business unit that the remaining Squeezebox products are under. They're a company that's been treading water for the past four or five years as they try to break away from dealing in commodity computer peripherals. Without much success.

mlsstl
2012-07-03, 20:38
One quarter of problems in this economy? Big deal.

Don't forget that at one point (1985) Apple's Board stripped Steve Jobs of all authority and he left the company. In 1997, Apple lost over $1 billion. They've come back, but it's a pretty safe bet that they'll still make a few errors here and there in the future.

As noted before, every company makes mistakes they wish they could recall. That doesn't mean that every back seat driver on the outside has the answer. And it sure doesn't mean that what I personally envision for a product represents what the majority of the public wants.

pippin
2012-07-03, 20:48
One quarter of problems in this economy? Big deal.

5 quarters. 4q/11 was already bad, you should read the reports you quote.

As noted before, every company makes mistakes they wish they could recall.
We were specifically talking Revue above where you discredited an actually very accurate observation.

I won't comment on the rest of your observations.

korny@sietsma.com
2012-07-03, 21:55
Calm down a bit folks - no point getting so heated in speculation about
what a company may or may not do, nor what they should or should not do -
it's all highly hypothetical and not worth getting steamed up about!

(this wasn't particularly about mlsstl - I just picked a post to reply to
at random...)

On a (to me at least!) slightly positive note - I picked up a set of
Logitech speakers for my PC today, I got some that have optional coax
inputs - and I note that all over the documentation it pushes the
Squeezebox, with lines like "to use the RCA inputs ... plug your Logitech
Squeezebox, DVD player, or game console into the RCA jacks".

- Korny

On 4 July 2012 10:29, mlsstl <mlsstl.5f5jrz (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com>wrote:

>
> Interesting how many people in this thread seem to think they have
> unusual insight into what Logitech "should be" doing as respects their
> product line up.
>
> As a profitable company that's been around for awhile, I strongly
> suspect they have more than a few people who know what they're doing
> when it comes to making a buck. I think the odds are pretty good that
> they've done some market research and have a good idea where they are
> going from here. Maybe they don't want to compete with the video
> streamers with sub $100 Rokus and the like. Sometimes a company finds it
> more profitable fulfilling a smaller niche than competing in a more
> congested, lower priced market.
>
> Same thing with the video screen. Some portion of market would love a
> screenless player, but what's the percentage? Would those sales justify
> the design, production & distribution costs? Once again, we're pitting
> our rather biased individual preferences against a company that is in
> the business, has access to a lot more info, and is probably a shade
> more dispassionate about the whole matter.
>
> Yes, there are any number of companies that I wish would bend the
> specifics of their product a bit more to my liking. Sometimes a company
> takes heed of customer input and sometimes they don't. It's just rather
> unrealistic to think that every idea I have is going to end up a high
> priority for a manufacturer.
>
> I'm not in the consumer electronics field, but after 35 years in the
> business world I know that decisions often include quite a bit of info
> that is pretty much invisible to those on the outside. Sure, sometimes
> in hindsight a business may wish they'd made a different decision, but
> if they are successful in their industry, the overall odds lay on their
> side of the court.
>
>
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> mlsstl's Profile: http://forums.slimdevices.com/member.php?userid=9598
> View this thread: http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=95603
>
>

erland
2012-07-04, 01:39
On a (to me at least!) slightly positive note - I picked up a set of
Logitech speakers for my PC today, I got some that have optional coax
inputs - and I note that all over the documentation it pushes the
Squeezebox, with lines like "to use the RCA inputs ... plug your Logitech
Squeezebox, DVD player, or game console into the RCA jacks".

Another good sign is that even if they are cutting other parts of the organization, they still seem to hire people to specifically work with Squeezeboxes:
http://hire.jobvite.com/CompanyJobs/Careers.aspx?c=qgX9Vfw1&v=1&page=Job%20Description&j=oRydWfwi
http://hire.jobvite.com/CompanyJobs/Careers.aspx?c=qgX9Vfw1&v=1&page=Job%20Description&j=oZPjWfwN

Future will tell what's going to happen, but it's nice to know that the oldest Squeezebox (Classic) I've had for over 6 years are still going to continue working great for local music and for streaming services through third party plugins for many more years, independent of what actions Logitech takes. I can honestly say that the number of hardware devices which are used on daily basis that survives 6 years in my home are fairly limited, the Sherwood amplifier still beats the Squeezebox but most other newer devices have already been replaced.

Is anyone sure anything from Apple (except for computers) which you purchase today is going to be useful 2018 ?
I think my iPod Touch 1G was purchased 2007 and it became more or less useless about 2-3 years later, theoretically it still works but in practice most new apps requires newer iOS versions than the iPod Touch 1G supports.

pippin
2012-07-04, 02:17
Both of my 1G iPod touch's are still being used every day although both not by me.
I bought the first one on the day it came out, that's almost 5 years now.

You are right, App support is almost nonexistent anymore (I can't even make iPeng builds for it myself now, for example) so they've pretty much become what the Squeezebox has always been: single purpose devices as a remote control or an actual audio player (something the "iPod" touch hasn't been throughout the first few years of it's life.
Although one is still being used for internet browsing an e-mail, too.

But you are right: my SB3s are still the _most_ used Squeezeboxes I have so there's clearly a difference in the level of aging.

mlsstl
2012-07-04, 05:20
I won't comment on the rest of your observations.

Whatever. 20-20 hindsight is a wonderful thing and no other company makes mistakes. I'll make a note of that on my Apple Newton.

Still think you guys should volunteer to run the place. ;-)

pippin
2012-07-04, 06:47
no other company makes mistakes.

Who said that?
I just said that your statements are wrong WRT Logitech. Didn't comment on other companies, too.

mlsstl
2012-07-05, 14:47
Your earlier comments with respect to the financial performance of Logitech certainly suggested they are failing to do something others routinely get right. That was the whole point of the Apple comparison I made. They may be the big cheese at this particular moment, but Apple has certainly had their financially down years and various products that didn't capture the public's imagination for whatever reason.

And, interestingly, when I looked at the unaudited 2012 year end financials for Logitech, they still showed a profit for the year (a bit over $70 million) -- just not as much as they made for 2011. Big difference between not making as much as investors would have wanted versus losing money for the year.

MrSinatra
2012-07-05, 14:56
hey pal, you need to settle down. people are free to make comments.

your POV is valid but so is the opposite POV.

the whole point i was trying to make to you which was done in good humor, is that logitech is not above criticism. you seem to act like b/c they are a company, or because they make money, they are. thats silly imo.

furthermore, i cited an example of a product they lost hundreds of millions of dollars over, and as was said, got their CEO fired. that just happened recently. so if that happened recently, it puts other things they are doing in a questionable light, does it not? it certainly would seem to at the very least harm their credibility.

now if you want to point out that people posting here also have credibility issues, i think thats totally fair. but that doesn't mean we can't say what we think, or that logitech is above criticism.

i'm sure people defended IBM when it put out WARP, ...does IBM still being around today make those criticisms invalid?

mlsstl
2012-07-05, 16:30
"Settle down"???

What have I written that has been so contentious?

You talk about alternate points of view but the tone of your post suggests I should have kept my comments to myself. It's either a public form or it's not.

MrSinatra
2012-07-05, 17:28
"Settle down"???

yeah, thats right, b/c you're the one coming on here and acting like the rest of us have no place to speak, and then get all huffy when we don't agree with you.

take it easy, francis!

erland
2012-07-05, 23:27
Everyone, please calm down a bit, everyone is allowed to have an opinion and post so but mlsstl is right in the sense that very few (probably none) of the forum people posting have experience of being in charge of a big company as Logitech, I'm fairly sure none of us would have done a better job than Logitech management did, we might have done things differently but probably not better. It's also often easy to think that some things they do look stupid or unprofessional but we also have to realize that we don't have access to all information Logitech management have when they make their decisions and we have no idea what kind of exciting Squeezebox products they might currently be working on. We don't have a clue if Squeezebox so far has been an economical success or failure, all we know is that it's a great music streaming product for geeks like ourselves.

However, the fact that Logitech still produce and sells Squeezeboxes indicates that it's not a total failure or that they are really trying to understand and remain in the music streaming business, else Squeezebox would have been shutdown in the same way as Revue was by now.

MrSinatra
2012-07-05, 23:57
come on erland, i know you don't believe that, just based on other posts you've made about differentiating the product, ie. why would someone want a SB over something else, especially something cheaper.

anyway, i happen to believe i would do a better job than the folks at logitech. sean and dean certainly did. remember them? they were the guys who invented this stuff in the garage, and logitech came along and bought it. amazing that logitech couldn't do what they did with all their brainiacs and corporate structure and precious info.

look, my beef here was with the notion that people posting here didn't have any credibility while logitech had all the credibility, and therefore us unwashed masses should stuff it. thats nonsense imo. its fair to say we may not be credible, but given logitech's record, its fairly demonstrable that they are not credible.

bpa
2012-07-06, 00:19
The following may be helpful - it was part of Morgan Stanley Telecom Feb 2012 conf call with Logitech CFO Erik Bardman. It feels to me the briefing notes are providing non committal answers for the analysts but with an excuse why sales are limited.


Francois Meunier – Morgan Stanley

And you mentioned the Squeezebox, which is a company you bought maybe two years ago.

Erik K. Bardman

It's probably about four years ago, I think, now.

Francois Meunier – Morgan Stanley

So, what’s going on there, because I remember when you bought it, I thought it's a pretty good idea to have them.

Erik K. Bardman

Right.

Francois Meunier – Morgan Stanley

It was a software, which was a big source.

Erik K. Bardman

Right.

Francois Meunier – Morgan Stanley

Where is it now? It's bit like off the radar.

Erik K. Bardman

Yes, so it’s a product that among its most loyal users, is very, very popular, right? And we've made some good improvements,
we came out with a new product a little over a year ago called the Radio, which was one of the smaller form factors for it.
We actually are taking some of the technology capabilities and it’s helping us in some other product that will necessarily
be clear to the end-consumer, they don’t really care where the technology comes from, so we’re leveraging some of that.

We also think if there is opportunity over time, there are improvements we need to make it a little more user friendly,
because it’s such a powerful product in terms of what you can do with it, but it's still not easy enough to use right out of the box.
The out of the box experience has got to get better, that's one of the things that's on our product roadmap.
But, we like the capability. We like the technology that it gives us.

amcluesent
2012-07-06, 00:35
Looking at the Cambridge Audio Stream Magic 6, this IMHO could have been the Transporter II in 2010. Cambridge are still struggling with the s/w to do gapless. Roomplayer are battlingto get multiplayer sync working. Logitech never recognised the IPR they had there, and could have done an blitz on AV Receiver manufacturers etc. who ended up using crappy DLNA for streaming.

Some say Logitech $$ saved Slimdevices after the Duet debacle and delays to the Touch. More like gave it a lingering death.

mherger
2012-07-06, 00:42
> Some say Logitech $$ saved Slimdevices after the Duet debacle and delays
> to the Touch. More like gave it a lingering death.

It would have been _before_ the Duet. Just to be correct on the timing.

--

Michael

erland
2012-07-06, 04:16
come on erland, i know you don't believe that, just based on other posts you've made about differentiating the product, ie. why would someone want a SB over something else, especially something cheaper.

I think they can do a better job, I'm just saying that I don't believe most forum members know how to manage a product within a big corporation as Logitech. It's easy to think that Logitech is one united company, but in reality I suspect it works similar to any other big corporation which means that in reality it consists of many smaller organizations wanting to do things their own way with none or minimal communication between upper management hierarchy and lower management structure that actually produce the products. To make it even more complex, higher management need to give most attention to the areas that produce most income or is most important for the corporation as a whole, I strongly suspect Squeezebox isn't considered to be one of these areas, which is likely one reason why the last year has been as passive as they have been.

amcluesent
2012-07-06, 04:57
Seems all too likely the Division Head who decided to buy Slimdevices with a strategy to grow that business has been moved on/fired and no-one else is much bothered so it's being run on a shoestring. Certainly in London, there's been plenty of Sonos adverts on the Tube (our metro) but you never see Squeezebox advertising in any media.

Grumpy Bob
2012-07-06, 07:35
I find it interesting is that when I bought my first Squeezebox (SB3) several years ago in response to a very positive review in Linux Format, I never had any significant problems setting it up - at that time on an Ubuntu box, or in maintaining the system, now running from LMS7.7.2 on a NAS box and which has two SBRs attached. Conversely, while reading the Sonos and Philips Streamium web pages, I find it really difficult to identify what components of those systems I would need to buy, and which operating systems are supported.

If Logitech pulled the plug, I'd buy a few Squeezeboxes for future use. I think the system, particularly as added to by iPad apps, is excellent.

My own view is that I'd be interested in seeing future Squeezebox products with different grades of hardware (to suit different users' audiophile habits), but probably losing the touch screen in favour of the sort of screen used on the SB3. I'm not about to leap over to the HiFi to search for the next track or album on a touch screen.

Robert

erland
2012-07-06, 11:45
Certainly in London, there's been plenty of Sonos adverts on the Tube (our metro) but you never see Squeezebox advertising in any media.

And IMHO that's a much bigger issue than the fact that we haven't got any new Squeezebox hardware the last 2 years, I think some advertising that made people aware of the existence of the Squeezebox products would make a big difference.

pippin
2012-07-06, 12:06
Seems all too likely the Division Head who decided to buy Slimdevices with a strategy to grow that business has been moved on/fired and no-one else is much bothered so it's being run on a shoestring.

Well, it's more a case of nobody taking or being given the time. Keeping your management around for more than a year or so would certainly help. In the four years I've had contact to Logitech on the Squeezebox now I've met at least three "generations" of management people and none of them are still around today.

amcluesent
2012-07-06, 12:10
Then again, maybe Logitech wanted to enter the kitchen cookware marketplace and there was a simple misunderstanding! What might have been...

http://uk.russellhobbs.com/images/sized/details/product_b742_15071_inset1.jpg

epoch1970
2012-07-06, 12:18
Then again, maybe Logitech wanted to enter the kitchen cookware marketplace and there was a misunderstanding...
Ah a colorful display, that's it :)

I'd like to thank to bpa for an interesting post (#89) in this meandering thread. And also Grumpy Bob (#94) for having expressed my exact opinion, FWIW.

MrSinatra
2012-07-06, 15:00
Then again, maybe Logitech wanted to enter the kitchen cookware marketplace and there was a simple misunderstanding! What might have been...

but does it work with online fruit?

garym
2012-07-06, 15:34
but does it work with online fruit?

aha. online fruit. online groceries. Remember WebVan..... starting to all make sense now ;-)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Webvan

mlsstl
2012-07-07, 08:05
yeah, thats right, b/c you're the one coming on here and acting like the rest of us have no place to speak, and then get all huffy when we don't agree with you.

take it easy, francis!

I reread my original comments and you're taking offense where none was intended. There is nothing I wrote that said you were wrong. I just pointed out that when one is watching as a consumer on the outside, there are a lot of things we don't know. There are explanations other than yours that are quite possible.

Rather that state with great certainty, as you did, that "this is what happened" or "the company should have done this instead", I pointed out there are a lot of facts unknown to those outside management that may alter the picture being painted. There is a big difference between my providing alternative possibilities and your claim that I said you were wrong.

Can you point out the sentence where I told you or others not to speak or that you were wrong? I don't think you'll find it unless you have an unusually active imagination that doesn't require much material to weave an over sensitive response.

Since this is a rather meaningless discussion in terms of changing how the world works, I think I'll bow out now.

Thanks for an interesting discussion.

banned for life
2012-07-07, 16:07
And IMHO that's a much bigger issue than the fact that we haven't got any new Squeezebox hardware the last 2 years, I think some advertising that made people aware of the existence of the Squeezebox products would make a big difference.

In the US. The media is infatuated with Sonos despite the high price. Call it the Bose factor. (This is true despite the Sonos/SB similarity in that a PC of some kind must be running for local music access.)

Despite it's lack of remote support, it's just a matter of time before Airplay overwhelms SB. This is due to a casual disregard for music quality and the inevitability of the expansion of iCloud to larger free accommodations. Along these lines, the Touch is a misplaced product. The display is too small to make it useful across the room and by the same token you can't cable it to the real stereo on the other side of the room. There has to be a high quality audio product like the Receiver that sells for just under US $100. TinySBS was a real waste of resources.

With an emphasis on remote (read phones/tablets) access and enhancements to MYSB.com to make this process simpler, the spiral might be slowed. If anything can be taught, LT's snubbing software players has to end. People would be eager to gain access to everything if it were adequately explained.

Also, ditch the "picture/video" aspect until you are ready to fully implement remote access.

bfl

mll
2012-08-02, 05:46
Very interesting read, everyone (although i confess I skipped on the DLNA debate :).

I'm not a frequent reader of this forum. I actually stumbled upon this thread while trying to know when smart lists would be implemented, confident as I was in the way Logitech (or rather Slimdevices) would keeb LMS at the spearhead of audio diffusion innovation. My trust waned a bit when I read the roadmap at http://wiki.slimdevices.com/index.php/Software_Roadmap which is obviously obsolete (last update of this map is in march 2011). I then came to this forum to see how the beta builds were going. Slowly at best it seemed. So I checked staff (at least the couple of forum users I know are staff) activity on the forum. Worrying. Finally, this thread that deals on Logitech pulling the plug. If it was purely theoretical I guess it wouldn't be discussed.

Well, I guess I won't listen to smart playlists on my LMS anytime soon. :(

erland
2012-08-02, 06:37
Very interesting read, everyone (although i confess I skipped on the DLNA debate :).

I'm not a frequent reader of this forum. I actually stumbled upon this thread while trying to know when smart lists would be implemented, confident as I was in the way Logitech (or rather Slimdevices) would keeb LMS at the spearhead of audio diffusion innovation. My trust waned a bit when I read the roadmap at http://wiki.slimdevices.com/index.php/Software_Roadmap which is obviously obsolete (last update of this map is in march 2011). I then came to this forum to see how the beta builds were going. Slowly at best it seemed. So I checked staff (at least the couple of forum users I know are staff) activity on the forum. Worrying. Finally, this thread that deals on Logitech pulling the plug. If it was purely theoretical I guess it wouldn't be discussed.

Just remember that nobody in this thread probably have much clues regarding what's going on inside Logitech, the only strong indications I'm aware of are:
1. Logitech isn't doing much marketing/advertising of the Squeezebox devices and as far as I know they have never done so.
2. Logitech seems to try to hire new people and they do mention Squeezebox in the descriptions of the new roles.
3. Logitech have decreased their activities in the community, it's pretty clear that they are doing more work in-house these days and have less interaction with the community.

Everyone have to do their own interpretation of this but I don't think we should consider Squeezebox to be dead just because we don't see much activities from the outside, there might be a lot of stuff going on inside Logitech which we aren't aware of.



Well, I guess I won't listen to smart playlists on my LMS anytime soon. :(

Depends, if you are willing to purchase some third party plugins you can get it already today by installing SQL Playlist, Dynamic Playlist and License Manager plugin and purchase real license to SQL Playlist or get a free 30 day evaluation license.

mll
2012-08-02, 06:43
Depends, if you are willing to purchase some third party plugins you can get it already today by installing SQL Playlist, Dynamic Playlist and License Manager plugin and purchase real license to SQL Playlist or get a free 30 day evaluation license.

That's an option, especially if the smart lists planned for the v8 on the wiki never comes. We'll see...

garym
2012-08-02, 07:48
Finally, this thread that deals on Logitech pulling the plug. If it was purely theoretical I guess it wouldn't be discussed.
(

I suspect discussion on forums has zero correlation with likelihood of ending this product.

aubuti
2012-08-02, 09:46
Well, I guess I won't listen to smart playlists on my LMS anytime soon. :(
As Erland noted, you can have smart playlists today by using his SQL Playlist, Dynamic Playlist and License Manager plugins. Or MusicIP may be an option for you, with or without the Spicefly Sugarcube plugin. Erland's plugins use a rules-based approach, where you explicitly write the rules. In MusicIP and Sugarcube the rules are a bit more of a black box, like the way Pandora generates playlists.

MusicIP can be a challenge to set up, and its developer did pull the plug some time ago. But it still works quite well.

fairyliquidizer
2012-08-04, 02:11
As Erland noted, you can have smart playlists today by using his SQL Playlist, Dynamic Playlist and License Manager plugins. Or MusicIP may be an option for you, with or without the Spicefly Sugarcube plugin. Erland's plugins use a rules-based approach, where you explicitly write the rules. In MusicIP and Sugarcube the rules are a bit more of a black box, like the way Pandora generates playlists.

MusicIP can be a challenge to set up, and its developer did pull the plug some time ago. But it still works quite well.

MusicIP works just fine. Sugarcube is a nice plugin. I haven't used any of Erland's plugins other than Trackstat and Licence Manager but I'm sure they are all good. My view is the ecosystem is excellent for me. It would be perfectly fine without the extras but the plugins make it wonderful and probably keep the size of the user base up.

"If The Sun Refused to Shine, I would still be loving you"... in other words if Logitech dropped it the server and hardware will continue to do the job and there is no rush for me to change. I have been a Slimdevices customer for a long time and I have no reason to wish to change.

As for video I am happy to use different hardware for that. I don't want a TV on while using music.

mortslim
2012-08-05, 17:52
I believe the Squeezeboxes are "end of life". There most likely won't be any improvements to the line hardware-wise and no new apps.

However the corporation Logitech will continue and because of the large squeezebox user base, it is very doubtful that the mysqueezebox.com service will ever disappear. Cloud hosting services are getting cheaper by the day, so it won't cost much for Logitech to maintain this database.

But there are examples in internet history for once popular services to shut down.

If it does disappear, I started a new thread as to what I consider a better alternative, as far as streaming services are concerned:

http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?95977-Better-Logitech-products-than-the-Squeezeboxes

erland
2012-08-06, 09:47
I believe the Squeezeboxes are "end of life". There most likely won't be any improvements to the line hardware-wise and no new apps.

However the corporation Logitech will continue and because of the large squeezebox user base, it is very doubtful that the mysqueezebox.com service will ever disappear. Cloud hosting services are getting cheaper by the day, so it won't cost much for Logitech to maintain this database.

If we assume you are correct regarding Squeezebox "end of life" (which I don't think you are, at least not yet), my belief is that there are three reasons for Logitech to keep mysqueezebox.com running after stop selling Squeezeboxes:
- To avoid breaking previously sold Squeezeboxes which are still under warranty period.
- If they can earn money on keeping it up and running (I doubt this is the case if they don't sell new Squeezebox hardware and don't keep services provided by mysqueezebox.com working).
- If they can make mysqueezebox.com work with non Squeezebox hardware and due to this earn money indirectly on it by selling new non Squeezebox hardware.

Keeping it running even at low costs just to keep customers happy is unlikely to happen unless they earn money on it or unless they get increased costs by shutting it down (through a lot of warranty returns). So from my perspective this means that after the last Squeezebox is sold they will likely try to keep mysqueezebox.com running for 1-3 years and then shut it down unless they can make it work with non Squeezebox hardware.

However, even without mysqueezebox.com, I'm not that worried about support for streaming services, because if Logitech doesn't provide support for them I'm fairly sure that there are service providers which are interested in letting some third party developer offer support for their service on the Squeezebox platform when Logitech's solution stops to work. Similar to the support we have already today for Spotify with Triode's Spotify plugin.

Of course, this whole discussion is very theoretical because Logitech are still selling Squeezeboxes and just a few months ago they scaled up mysqueezebox.com to be able to handle higher load and they are trying to hire additional people where they mention Squeezebox in the role descriptions.

jhonsberger@msn.com
2012-08-08, 05:03
Well if they pull the plug my setup at the office would not work . We have no computers and only use tablets for our business. The Touch is directly
connected to the router and only MySqueezebox is being used to play music.

alfista
2012-08-08, 07:22
Well if they pull the plug my setup at the office would not work . We have no computers and only use tablets for our business. The Touch is directly connected to the router and only MySqueezebox is being used to play music.
On the other hand, seeing as the Touch (as the only SB to date) has its own rudimentary server it would still be able to perform a lot of its entertainment duties even if mysqueezebox was axed.

TheLastMan
2012-08-08, 07:50
I doubt there will be any new and exclusively audio SqueezeBox based hardware in future. We might see an upgraded version of the Touch and/or radio but nothing totally new. I think it is most likely, however, that the “Squeezebox” branded Radio will go and be replaced with a much simpler and less ambitious Logitech branded internet radio that incorporates SB player circuitry that would allow you to utilize LMS or MySqueezebox without being dependent on either. I am sure Logitech will eventually drop the Squeezebox “brand” but keep the Squeezebox functionality.

To me the blindingly obvious clue is the transformation of Squeezebox Server into Logitech Media Server with its dual DLNA and Squeezebox capabilities.

I foresee Squeezebox functionality being built into future streamers / players that are likely to have a dual audio and video streaming role. I am sure Logitech will find a use for LMS’s ability to play a multitude of codecs (either natively or trans-coded) as well as its multi-room and gapless playback abilities. They would be fools not to!

SqueezeBox circuitry (or at least logic) is likely to be utilized in future products. LMS and MySqueezebox (MyLogitech?) will live on in order to provide links to people’s private music collections (locally or in the Cloud) as well as to the online services like Rhapsody and Spotify. However, Logitech will allow their players to also utilize users other DLNA servers as well in order to maximize their compatibility.

jhonsberger@msn.com
2012-08-08, 11:01
On the other hand, seeing as the Touch (as the only SB to date) has its own rudimentary server it would still be able to perform a lot of its entertainment duties even if mysqueezebox was axed.

Yeah I see your point,but that server has a lot to be desired.very slow,etc. Maybe a upgraded touch will
come out with a more robust server if they axe my squeezebox.

aubuti
2012-08-08, 11:41
Yeah I see your point,but that server has a lot to be desired.very slow,etc.
Most of the issues with the Touch's built-in server are related to scanning. That's not an issue if you are mostly listening to outside streams, as you are now with mysb.com. You don't say what services you're using on mysb.com at present, but even if mysb.com disappears you can still listen to internet radio via the built-in server. That may be small consolation if you are presently using mysb.com for things like Spotify or MOG, but it's something.

mortslim
2012-08-08, 11:41
Logitech is laying off employees and losing money.

Here is a link about the layoffs:
http://allthingsd.com/20120608/struggling-logitech-bites-bullet-lays-off-450/

It is not in a position to be pursuing niche markets. It is refocusing on the mainstream user with simple products that are easy to use and have widespread appeal. Its not going to be doing anything involving "servers". Most people don't know what a server is and don't care about them.

The future is cloud services. The future is renting rather than owning. If you don't own anything, you don't need a local server.

The original squeezebox was developed when there were no streaming audio resources, no cloud services. It filled a need when some consumers started ripping their own CD's to their computers and wanted an easy way to listen to them. The original squeezebox was just a step up in the evolution of music listening from the multi-carousel CD player.

Now consumers don't buy CD's. Why should they? They can get any track, any artist, any genre, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for just $10. per month without the hassle of maintaining a server, or ripping CD's, or any of the other chores associated with collecting and maintaining your own music collection. And you'll never own even a fraction of the albums that the big boys have, e.g. Rhapsody, Spotify, etc.

Look at the movie industry. DVD sales are down because it is easier to rent a movie on demand from your cable TV company, or though Amazon Video on Demand, or the several other movie rental services. Same thing has happened to the music industry.

Why do you think Roku is so successful? Because it is open source, easy for a new company to put its "app" onto Roku and then stream to the public. And it is easy for the public to use a Roku. (A lot easier than Google TV) (And Roku, being open rather than a walled garden like Apple TV, offers much more choice).

The public wants easy. If there is any future for Logitech to help deliver music, it will be on the Roku model, if at all.

erland
2012-08-08, 11:44
I foresee Squeezebox functionality being built into future streamers / players that are likely to have a dual audio and video streaming role.

In my mind "Listen to music" and "Watch a video" is two use cases with very different characteristics, not just from a functional perspective but also a hardware perspective. With music I need advanced browsing and search functionality and I need to be able to build and play albums and static/smart playlists with multiple tracks, with video I basically just need to find the single movie I want to see and then I'll watch it for 2 hours and then touch the remote control the next time to turn of the device. The common parts is basically only that you need to be able to output sound through speakers in both use cases.

Can someone mention one stationary device which supports both audio and video which actually works good both for watching movies and browsing and listening to music ?

I've seen some of these devices but their music browsing/listening support has always been pretty bad, so the result have been a video device which you can also use to listen on a song now and then. The closest thing that comes to mind that might work is AppleTV, but what kind of support do you really have in that for more advanced music related things ?

Now, it could make sense to have a video support in a music player, because there are music videos and consert videos which are music related and could be of interest, but the issue is that everyone that tries to do such device tends to do a video device and then just add some minimal functionality to also make it possible to play music tracks on it.

I believe Logitech Revue was a device that could do both things, but it was abandoned fairly quickly and I also believe its music support was fairly limited.

erland
2012-08-08, 12:03
Logitech is laying off employees and losing money.

Here is a link about the layoffs:
http://allthingsd.com/20120608/struggling-logitech-bites-bullet-lays-off-450/

And hiring new people:
http://hire.jobvite.com/CompanyJobs/Careers.aspx?c=qgX9Vfw1&v=1&page=Job%20Description&j=oDqDWfwm&s=SimplyHired&sh_aa=1&utm_source=simplyhired&utm_medium=jobclick
http://hire.jobvite.com/CompanyJobs/Careers.aspx?c=qgX9Vfw1&v=1&page=Job%20Description&j=oRydWfwi&s=SimplyHired&sh_aa=1&utm_source=simplyhired&utm_medium=jobclick
http://hire.jobvite.com/CompanyJobs/Careers.aspx?c=qgX9Vfw1&v=1&page=Job%20Description&j=oZPjWfwN&s=SimplyHired&sh_aa=1&utm_source=simplyhired&utm_medium=jobclick



It is not in a position to be pursuing niche markets. It is refocusing on the mainstream user with simple products that are easy to use and have widespread appeal. Its not going to be doing anything involving "servers". Most people don't know what a server is and don't care about them.

Agreed 100%



The future is cloud services.

Agreed 100%



The future is renting rather than owning. If you don't own anything, you don't need a local server.

I think you are correct, the only thing that makes me doubt a little bit is the fact that Apple still only allows us to buy music and not rent it. It only gives me some doubts since they have done most other things right during the last years.



The original squeezebox was developed when there were no streaming audio resources, no cloud services. It filled a need when some consumers started ripping their own CD's to their computers and wanted an easy way to listen to them. The original squeezebox was just a step up in the evolution of music listening from the multi-carousel CD player.

We have also seen a switched focus during last years from SBS/LMS to mysqueezebox.com where more and more things have been focused at making it easy to use mysqueezebox.com even if it makes it harder to use a local server.




Now consumers don't buy CD's. Why should they? They can get any track, any artist, any genre, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for just $10. per month without the hassle of maintaining a server, or ripping CD's, or any of the other chores associated with collecting and maintaining your own music collection. And you'll never own even a fraction of the albums that the big boys have, e.g. Rhapsody, Spotify, etc.

I believe you are right but it's also important to remember that a significant part of the population still likes to buy/collect things, they don't want to rent it as it means they might have to pay again if they want to use it sometime later. However, for the general population I believe you are still correct, the future is streaming services like Rhapsody, Spotify and similar.

jhonsberger@msn.com
2012-08-08, 12:06
Most of the issues with the Touch's built-in server are related to scanning. That's not an issue if you are mostly listening to outside streams, as you are now with mysb.com. You don't say what services you're using on mysb.com at present, but even if mysb.com disappears you can still listen to internet radio via the built-in server. That may be small consolation if you are presently using mysb.com for things like Spotify or MOG, but it's something.

Well we mostly listen to MOG and Radio Paradise .80 percent MOG , 20 percent Radio Paradise .

Philip Meyer
2012-08-09, 14:16
>> The future is renting rather than owning. If you don't own anything,
>> you don't need a local server.
>>
>I think you are correct, the only thing that makes me doubt a little bit
>is the fact that Apple still only allows us to buy music and not rent
>it. It only gives me some doubts since they have done most other things
>right during the last years.
>
I disagree that the future is with renting music - well isn't my future anyway.

I own my house (well still paying for it, but will eventually own it...), and will not change to start renting my house.
Similarly, I own a lot of CDs, which I have invested a lot of time ripping to a media library. I'm not going to start paying a monthly fee to rent that music at a lower music quality, and the thought of uploading it all, probably involving compressing to a lower quality, such that I can stream/download it for playing seems backward. I don't fancy paying a monthly fee to be able to play stuff and not own that content that I cannot do with as I please.

I also have a lot of obscure music, which I would not be able to rent from any on-line service. I can't believe that any single future on-line service will have 100% of all music available on demand in high quality.

I agree that cloud services and music rental may appeal to some people, and maybe this is an increasing percentage, but surely a large percentage of people like me are still not going to comit to a subscription based service to play music that they already own.

aubuti
2012-08-09, 15:26
I agree that cloud services and music rental may appeal to some people, and maybe this is an increasing percentage, but surely a large percentage of people like me are still not going to comit to a subscription based service to play music that they already own.
I agree with the overall proposition, but I think we may disagree on (a) the current relative proportions of those who prefer renting vs owning, (b) the rate of increase of the renters, and (c) how much more the music business cares about the renters than the owners (or more generally, the growing part of the market vs the shrinking part of the market).

Also, while I don't imagine many people would pay a subscription solely to listen to music they already have on CD, many do subscribe to such services for music discovery. I'm also sure that many will end up listening to tracks they already own on CD just because it's more convenient (lossy warts and all), especially if they haven't already ripped the CDs or set up a music server. I believe people like us with thousands of ripped CDs and music servers are a shrinking minority, or as pablolie put it in post #47, dinosaurs.

The bottom line is that you or I may not change our patterns to fit with the new mainstream, but companies like Logitech, Apple, etc definitely will. And the record companies will continue to be clueless.

mortslim
2012-08-09, 16:34
"Millennials (generation Y) want access over ownership, streaming over storing, and rentals over buying."

http://bostinno.com/channels/renting-vs-owning/

mortslim
2012-08-09, 16:38
"Music access, not ownership, is the future"

http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2011/07/21/spotify-daniel-ek-brainstorm/

dasmueller
2012-08-09, 18:01
I for one am a dinosaur and will not willingly go the rental route. I enjoy the flexibility of being able to do what I wish w the CD/hard copies or downloaded files that I have. I am not willing to rely on someone else to provide that flexibility for me. There is too much flux in technology to make me comfortable that the landlord will be there tomorrow.

TheLastMan
2012-08-10, 03:17
I for one am a dinosaur and will not willingly go the rental route. I enjoy the flexibility of being able to do what I wish w the CD/hard copies or downloaded files that I have. I am not willing to rely on someone else to provide that flexibility for me. There is too much flux in technology to make me comfortable that the landlord will be there tomorrow.

+1

I love the streaming model and use it extensively for checking out new music. However Spotify have yet to turn a profit and it is doubtful that unlimited streaming for as little as $10 a month is sustainable in the long term. I think quite soon we may see sharp rises in the cost of on-line music access combined with more rigorous enforcement against "pirates". In the UK P2P is already severely constricted by most IPs making getting music through illegal torrents impractical.

I have also analysed the quality of the streams from Spotify as they sometimes sound rather strange through my hi-fi, particularly when compared with a CD rip of the same recording. It is quite clear that many streams are not 320kbs and pretty well all have dynamics squashed through heavy compression. Spotify sound is closer to low quality FM Radio than CD.

jhonsberger@msn.com
2012-08-10, 05:20
I use to buy alot of Cd's when you could only hear small clips of the music on the album.

Now I use MOG for discovering the albums I really like to purchase and even with the 120 bucks/yearly
I pay for it,I am definitely saving money by not buying albums I consider ok but not great.

Now if streaming went to 20/month,I might drop this cd selection method.

andynormancx
2012-08-10, 07:19
I'm also a dinosaur who likes CDs.

Apple's iTunes Match makes for an interesting hybrid of the buy/rent setup. You get high quality, but not lossless, music to buy (256k AAC) and keep.

And you get _all_ your existing music available on any iOS device; music that isn't in the iTunes catalogue gets transcoded to 256k AAC and uploaded to your iTunes Match account.

I'll be sticking to my CDs for now though, apart from anything else they are much cheaper if you buy second hand ;)

reinholdk
2012-08-11, 08:04
I'm another one in the gathering of the dinosaurs here (and we all know what happened to them).

Maybe I'm even a special kind of dinosaur, because I've grown up with tape decks and vinyl LPs and kept the habit of listening to albums and not to a sequence of unrelated (maybe even randomly selected) tracks.

And I'm happy to buy the CDs and put them as FLACs on my server. So I know what I have and know that I'm independent of any online music provider or cloud thing.

pablolie
2012-08-11, 09:34
I think such trends in the end are cyclical and transitory. It is also merely an expression of the way stuff is marketed and current Zeitgesit - which can change at the drop of a dime. :)

Furthermore, I think in this forum you have a somewhat distorted probe of people in general. I think that it is the people that, in the past, had a few sad albums on a neglected shelf (a scratched Best of Chicago CD and such), those are the ones that now at least have access to more stuff. They didn't buy much then, they certainly won't buy now, but at least now they have access to more up to date music, and the industry now can draw some steady if meager revenue from them.

The people that used to have over a thousand CDs and hundreds of albums and cared for them lovingly, and played them on equipment they had emotional attachment to... you find a lot of them in these forums, but they weren't the majority 25 years ago nor will they ever be.

One could furthermore point out that while it seems an eternal and unchanging truth that people's entire entertainment content naturally belongs in an Amazon or iTunes cloud, that phenomenon is recent, and immensely vulnerable to singular marketing mistakes or changing fortunes of the companies involved.

As to myself - I haven't boughts CDs in a while, and shall not do it going forward. Something has broken in recoding quality in studios in the vast majority of cases (yes, even jazz), and no one seems to put much effort into the booklet anymore. So I'll just get the 256k VBR MP3 version, and find some online articles to store along with the albums that provides some background (when worth it). I am not necessarily happy about it, and I try to find higher resolution versions, but in the end I'll settle for convenience over that 1% in sound quality... There are a very few artists that, *if* they came out with new stuff, I'd try to get it in CD and FLAC it.

But I much prefer ownership and building a soundtrack of my life, then renting and forgetting and leaving occasional reencounters with art a thing of chance.

mlsstl
2012-08-11, 09:53
...and kept the habit of listening to albums and not to a sequence of unrelated (maybe even randomly selected) tracks.


This is somewhat off-subject, but the concept of an album as a "complete work" is a relatively recent idea in popular music. 78s and cylinders only allowed for a few minutes of music. While you could buy classical works on 78 records, you ended up with a group of 8 or 10 records. That wasn't done with popular music.

Prior to the 1940s, sheet music outsold records and popular songs were purchased as individual works. The song "After the Ball" by Charles Harris was a sheet music pop best seller in the 1890s. It sold 2 million copies in 1892 and perhaps 5 million that decade.

The LP (long playing record) wasn't available to consumers until 1948 and through much of the 50s was rarely used as anything more than a collection of songs by the same artist. "Theme" albums (other than Christmas, etc.) didn't really come onto the scene until some of the rock bands in the 1960s started to fancy themselves serious artists.

So, one can argue that the sale of individual songs on iTunes, Amazon and similar services is actually a return to the more common way of enjoying popular music for most of the 140 year history of music sales to the public.

pablolie
2012-08-11, 11:32
... the more common was of enjoying popular music for most of the 140 year history of music sales to the public.

Interesting message.

I am aware the debate is about recorded music.

Let us not forget the music "ideal", despite its sometimes compromised audiop quality, is the live performance. I think most stereo shrines pay tribute to pursuing that ideal. And longer compiled works give us the ability to tailor said pseudo-live performance to our ideal.

In a technology unconstrained future, I'd probably have a hologram of my favorite -past and present- artists performing songs in a variety of perfect surroundings, and thanking me personally for my patronage. I'd probably own virtual rights to said performances, but the storage location is utterly seamless to me. I can just pop on my 3D Glasses and B&W Nautilus headspeakers and rock on. :D

wildgoose
2012-08-15, 15:39
"Music access, not ownership, is the future"

I don’t know. I’d rather pay the $120 every year to buy songs off iTune rather than waste them on some music rental services. I have so many monthly payments that, despite my love for music, I have not signed up for any music rental services. Music accesses are definitely changing. Consumers have more choices now than they ever did before. But I don’t believe the vast majority will pay a monthly fee to listen to music. I do however believe a far more majority will pay for video services.

My guess is the original Slim devices people, those who had vision and roadmaps of where they want the devices to go, are long gone. Logitech just doesn’t quite know what to do with the product besides coming out with incremental products/fixes/changes. The way the product has evolved over the last few years is consistent with someone’s earlier comment about 3 different generations of management for this at Logitech. No one in charge has a good vision or bold enough to make big changes.

This is different from Sonos. For Sonos, it’s their main product. Either they make it, or they die. So they put much more effort into it than Logitech (advertising, R&D, etc..). The survival of Logitech does not depend on SB, the survival of Sonos depends on their products.

As for specifics, there are quite a few things Logitech could’ve done to improve the SB experience, in no particular order:

- Replace Perl in SBS with Java or something less heavy. Perl is picked because it allowed Slim devices to originally bring the product to market fast, but it has far out lived its usefulness. Something more lightweight and efficient will enable better product development in the future and allow more efficient use of resources when SBS is run on less capable hardware. Basically a SBS re-write focusing on speed/feature/efficiency.

- Improve music library management. When you have lots of music, how do you organize them? You can label them for example, my music, wife's music, baby music, with ratings, smart playlist, etc. Something that will enable more intelligent music playback that will impress the user. Yes, I can do some of it with addons, and I can manually create playlists. But what I really want is some integrated solution. Don’t make the mistake of Palm which provided a basic OS and hopes 3rd party software vendors will fill all the holes. You need to make improvements to the products itself like Apple does.

- Switch to a common platform such as Android (heck, is there anything else?). Provide video features. The first thing my brother in law asked me when I gave him a SB Touch is, can I hook this up to my TV and watch Netflix? ;) Can I see the playlist on the TV, etc..

Honestly, I think Logitech is the wrong home for SB. Google might be a better choice. I’d love to see a combo device of Squeezebox and SageTV. The SageTV server is a much better server and it shouldn't be that hard to add SBS features to it.

mortslim
2012-08-16, 16:32
The people that used to have over a thousand CDs and hundreds of albums and cared for them lovingly, and played them on equipment they had emotional attachment to... you find a lot of them in these forums, but they weren't the majority 25 years ago nor will they ever be.


New article: "Will streaming sites dethrone iTunes as king of digital music?"

"With the growth of Spotify, Pandora, Songza, and other streaming music services, consumers now have the opportunity to treat the entire world of recorded music as their playlist. And as mobile devices transform the way we interact with our surroundings, it’s making the idea of paying to own songs look ever more expensive, even at $0.99."

http://news.yahoo.com/will-streaming-sites-dethrone-itunes-as-king-of-digital-music--20120816.html

pippin
2012-08-16, 16:52
Yea, these commentators always have a really narrow view on "the whole world of recorded music". Even though I don't listen to them, for me that would at least include some smaller acts like The Beatles or so but who am I to judge, I listen to Lady Gaga more often than to Paul MacCartney... Yet still... less than half of my music is on iTunes and iTunes is much better than Spotify and even on Spotify after 18 months I see that a significant percentage of what I once bookmarked (like 1/3 or so) is not there anymore.

No, Spotify et al. are invaluable for occasional listening and to discover music but music you like, you still need to own, no way around that. And yes, people will learn that, they are not dumb, just because they might be young.

RonM
2012-08-16, 18:43
This is somewhat off-subject, but the concept of an album as a "complete work" is a relatively recent idea in popular music. 78s and cylinders only allowed for a few minutes of music. While you could buy classical works on 78 records, you ended up with a group of 8 or 10 records. That wasn't done with popular music.

Prior to the 1940s, sheet music outsold records and popular songs were purchased as individual works. The song "After the Ball" by Charles Harris was a sheet music pop best seller in the 1890s. It sold 2 million copies in 1892 and perhaps 5 million that decade.

The LP (long playing record) wasn't available to consumers until 1948 and through much of the 50s was rarely used as anything more than a collection of songs by the same artist. "Theme" albums (other than Christmas, etc.) didn't really come onto the scene until some of the rock bands in the 1960s started to fancy themselves serious artists.

So, one can argue that the sale of individual songs on iTunes, Amazon and similar services is actually a return to the more common way of enjoying popular music for most of the 140 year history of music sales to the public.

Agreed, mostly. There have been a lot of "theme" albums, but not many that actually worked very well. Most "albums" (CD or otherwise) are simple collections of songs from a particular time in an artist's evolution. Some of the songs might be good, some not so good.

On occasion this works very well as a reflection of a very creative or special period in an artist's (or group's) working life. Sadly, there are just not all that many Gracelands or Dark Side of the Moons or Broken Englishes.

Ron

Edit - this got me thinking about what albums really work as albums -- I've started a thread in the Music forum on this

GeeJay
2012-08-16, 19:15
.

The people that used to have over a thousand CDs and hundreds of albums and cared for them lovingly, and played them on equipment they had emotional attachment to... you find a lot of them in these forums, but they weren't the majority 25 years ago nor will they ever be.



This is a really good point, and one I hadn't thought about in this way before you mentioned it. Since I started buying records in the 70s, I can think of very few people who amassed large collections of music. They listened to the radio, and had 10-20 albums, max. Maybe a larger collection of singles (particularly the kids). Most folks cared about what was popular in the moment, and they could get their fix from whatever commercial station they fancied. You only became a collector if the radio didn't meet your need, whether it be eclectic stuff, deep cuts, whatever.

Today's music consumer may not really be that much different. Subscription services may be more appealing to them, but that would only be the case (I think) if they can't find what they like on free radio. In any event, if Squeezebox is going to survive in the Logitech world it will have to tap into how the broader audience consumes music...us music nerds won't support the growth a public company needs.

I just hope they find a way to do it and keep us nerds happy, too.

MelonMonkey
2012-08-19, 07:33
Streaming services and the like are replacing radio, not music ownership. If you look at music purchases historically, including the yardsticks by which sales awards are given, you'll see that music ownership has always been comprised of a rather insignificant proportion of the music listenership.

I'm not one to make bets, but if I were, I'd have no problem wagering that iTunes (or its Apple-owned derivative) will be around in 10 years time. Spotify and Pandora? I wouldn't make bets for that kind of longevity. I don't think I'd feel comfortable predicting they'll still be around in 3 years, let alone 10.

Unless free streaming services all go away, I don't believe that pay streaming/rental services will realize the big money in this industry. Just look at how many of those companies/services have folded. It's like clock-work.

That said, Logitech hasn't done anything with Squeezebox. At least with Harmony they managed to significantly grow the business and make it the de-facto non-disposable universal remote brand. Sonos by comparison has much greater brand recognition.

Honestly, if it weren't for iPeng and the other third-party software supporting this platform, I think it would be in far more dire straights than it is now.

JJZolx
2012-08-19, 10:41
New article: "Will streaming sites dethrone iTunes as king of digital music?"

"With the growth of Spotify, Pandora, Songza, and other streaming music services, consumers now have the opportunity to treat the entire world of recorded music as their playlist. And as mobile devices transform the way we interact with our surroundings, it’s making the idea of paying to own songs look ever more expensive, even at $0.99."

http://news.yahoo.com/will-streaming-sites-dethrone-itunes-as-king-of-digital-music--20120816.html

A couple of years ago I'd go into a bar and the bartender would be playing tunes from an iPod, with very few exceptions. Now, I don't see many iPods. Instead, they play Pandora through their smart phones.

I think we're less than a decade away from this being the main form of music play for the vast majority of people. It's where Logitech wanted to take the Squeezebox line, but failed miserably. I can still see them returning to this mass market, but they'll need to do it by churning out cheap boxes by the tens of thousands for well under $100 to do it. The Squeezebox product line as we once knew it is dead.

mortslim
2012-08-19, 11:57
The Squeezebox product line as we once knew it is dead.

Although Squeezebox may provide good control of a local server-based music database, the demographic trend for future marketplace growth, as seen in the recent prior posts, is for internet streaming music. This is where Squeezebox’s problem is.

The squeezebox “walled garden” approach is falling behind the marketplace. End-users beg for new services and request updates to existing services, and Logitech is either non-responsive or slow in responding.

If Logitech wants to continue to be a player in the music delivery arena, it should be looking to Roku for a model business plan. Roku sells 3 different boxes, with its top of the line priced at $100. and going downwards from there (far cheaper than squeezebox in this cost conscious world). And Roku is an open platform.

Here is how Roku works with content developers:

“An open platform, Roku’s Streaming Player enables content owners to bypass traditional distribution routes and reach views and consumers directly. Roku’s platform allows a wide variety of channels and monetization options.”

“There is no fee for joining the Roku Developer Program or for publishing a Roku Channel.”

“Roku does not host any content. Your Roku channel connects to your existing service and servers or CDN to locate and stream your content.”

http://www.roku.com/developer

I arranged for the Stitcher podcast service top brass to contact Logitech to host the Stitcher service on the squeezebox platform. Logitech wasn’t interested. That was frustrating for me and really crystallized Logitech’s problem with squeezebox. Content providers want control of their own hosting service, rather than be captive to Logitech’s whims.

Both consumers and developers want more than Logitech currently offers. Unless squeezebox can meet these dual challenges, it will squander any hope of future opportunities.

pallfreeman
2012-08-19, 15:23
The Squeezebox product line as we once knew it is dead.

It's just resting.

kidstypike
2012-08-19, 15:46
It's just resting.

Well if it's resting, I'll wake it up ...... Wake up Logitech!!!

castalla
2012-08-19, 18:26
Although Squeezebox may provide good control of a local server-based music database, the demographic trend for future marketplace growth, as seen in the recent prior posts, is for internet streaming music. This is where Squeezebox’s problem is.

The squeezebox “walled garden” approach is falling behind the marketplace. End-users beg for new services and request updates to existing services, and Logitech is either non-responsive or slow in responding.

If Logitech wants to continue to be a player in the music delivery arena, it should be looking to Roku for a model business plan. Roku sells 3 different boxes, with its top of the line priced at $100. and going downwards from there (far cheaper than squeezebox in this cost conscious world). And Roku is an open platform.

Here is how Roku works with content developers:

“An open platform, Roku’s Streaming Player enables content owners to bypass traditional distribution routes and reach views and consumers directly. Roku’s platform allows a wide variety of channels and monetization options.”

“There is no fee for joining the Roku Developer Program or for publishing a Roku Channel.”

“Roku does not host any content. Your Roku channel connects to your existing service and servers or CDN to locate and stream your content.”

http://www.roku.com/developer

I arranged for the Stitcher podcast service top brass to contact Logitech to host the Stitcher service on the squeezebox platform. Logitech wasn’t interested. That was frustrating for me and really crystallized Logitech’s problem with squeezebox. Content providers want control of their own hosting service, rather than be captive to Logitech’s whims.

Both consumers and developers want more than Logitech currently offers. Unless squeezebox can meet these dual challenges, it will squander any hope of future opportunities.

Using Roku as an example of how Logi could progress is a red-herring. Roku is an utter mess of trivial channels, utterly rubbish channels and channels which don't work. Most of the other channels are simply pay-for-old-movies channels. And the whole outfit is being screwed down with the major involvement of Dishworld and Murdoch's News Corporation. the only decent channel is BBC iPlayer.

There's a huge internet radio market out there, and Logi is a market leader if not the best provider of hardware and software support. It does fall down in promoting its products, and possibly in developing new products.

I've tried lots of different internet streamers and Logi's audio products are the best available to the ordinary user.

bluegaspode
2012-08-20, 00:36
Well if it's resting, I'll wake it up ...... Wake up Logitech!!!

Oh no, You stunned them, just as they were waking up.


http://orangecow.org/pythonet/pet-shop.html

maggior
2012-08-20, 06:51
How ironic that we are talking about how Logitech (squeezebox) should be more like Roku when the squeezebox trounced the Roku music streaming device 5 years ago or so. Roku rose from the ashes by revinventing itself.

aubuti
2012-08-20, 08:40
How ironic that we are talking about how Logitech (squeezebox) should be more like Roku when the squeezebox trounced the Roku music streaming device 5 years ago or so. Roku rose from the ashes by revinventing itself.
Very true. I remember giving the Roku boxes (particularly this one (http://soundbridge.roku.com/soundbridge/index.php)) a serious look when I was wading into the network music player world seven years ago. If I remember correctly, the Roku having only wifi (b) was the dealkiller for me. I still think I made the right choice.

maggior
2012-08-20, 09:08
Very true. I remember giving the Roku boxes (particularly this one (http://soundbridge.roku.com/soundbridge/index.php)) a serious look when I was wading into the network music player world seven years ago. If I remember correctly, the Roku having only wifi (b) was the dealkiller for me. I still think I made the right choice.

Yes, the soundbridge. I couldn't remember the name. I had looked into them as a cheap alternative to the squeezebox, which at $300 was pretty steep at the time. The deal breaker for me was that it didn't support gapless playback. It was shortly after I had looked into them that they stopped making them.

Like you I think I made the right choice. If I decided to sell one of my SB3's today, I wouldn't get my $300 back, but I'd probably get $150. You probably couldn't give a soundbridge away today.

erland
2012-08-20, 09:42
Here is how Roku works with content developers:

“An open platform, Roku’s Streaming Player enables content owners to bypass traditional distribution routes and reach views and consumers directly. Roku’s platform allows a wide variety of channels and monetization options.”

“There is no fee for joining the Roku Developer Program or for publishing a Roku Channel.”

“Roku does not host any content. Your Roku channel connects to your existing service and servers or CDN to locate and stream your content.”

http://www.roku.com/developer

I arranged for the Stitcher podcast service top brass to contact Logitech to host the Stitcher service on the squeezebox platform. Logitech wasn’t interested. That was frustrating for me and really crystallized Logitech’s problem with squeezebox. Content providers want control of their own hosting service, rather than be captive to Logitech’s whims.

Just out of interest:
- Is Deezer available for Roku ?
- Is Spotify available for Roku ?
- Is Rhapsody available for Roku ?

The problem with the Roku model as far as I understand is that it expects the content provider to do development to support a Roku specific protocol only used by Roku devices. If the content provider doesn't consider Roku to be big enough this will likely result in that you will never get access to their service on a Roku device.

As you say, the problem with the Logitech model is that if a content provider want to be on mysqueezebox.com the Logitech model presumes Logitech is willing to do development to support the service.

One advantage with the Logitech model is that it kind of support both models, it's just that it needs a plugin and a locally installed SBS/LMS to support a similar model as Roku which means that you need to have a computer powered on to use some services. This is also an advantage if Logitech would stop selling Squeezeboxes, they can still continue to work great for existing and new services using a local LMS installation even without involving Logitech at all.

Do you know if Roku have any solution similar to LMS where you can run a local service and add support for services which the content providers doesn't want to offer support for ?

To me it kind of feels like the Logitech model might be preferred as long as Logitech is willing to invest the necessary resources and the Roku model is preferred as long as the content provider is willing to invest the necessary resources. However, I can agree that one problem with the Logitech model is that Logitech tends to stop the development when they have enough functionality to advertise the streaming provider, after this the streaming provider might add more functionality but in many cases that functionality doesn't get available on the Squeezebox integration. Such scenario is probably less likely to happen with the Roku model as long as the content provider needs to update the Roku integration to keep existing customers or get new customers.

erland
2012-08-20, 09:46
Well if it's resting, I'll wake it up ...... Wake up Logitech!!!

This is the wrong place to try to wake anyone from Logitech, if you want to reach someone within Logitech you better go to their official support forum at http://forums.logitech.com where there at least are some Logitech employees reading.

kidstypike
2012-08-20, 09:58
This is the wrong place to try to wake anyone from Logitech, if you want to reach someone within Logitech you better go to their official support forum at http://forums.logitech.com where there at least are some Logitech employees reading.

Yes, sorry about that. Post #140 by pallfreeman reminded me of the "Parrot Sketch" by the Monty Python team, this was taken further by bluegaspode, who obviously saw the connection. It won't happen again.

mortslim
2012-08-20, 11:22
the Logitech model might be preferred as long as Logitech is willing to invest the necessary resources and the Roku model is preferred as long as the content provider is willing to invest the necessary resources.

A review of the forum requests by users for services and updates to services implies that Logitech is not investing resources at the moment. Even the Logitech webpage for Squeezebox is out of date as to the services offered.

Content providers will show interest if they see sufficient market penetration for the squeezebox. They do a cost/benefit analysis just like Logitech. If the missing content providers see that they can reach a tipping point for eardrums, they'lll come to the platform.

In order for Logitech to be more mass market, it should lower the price, turn up the volume and get rid of the LCD screen to keep the cost down (it's more efficient to put control into the user's hands on already owned multi-purpose devices,like iPeng on the iPad and the iPhone).

Logitech already has the hardware for such lower cost products. It just needs to open up its software to make it easy for the content providers to be enticed to the platform.

And as to the complaint that the Roku model generates a lot of uninteresting content, the solution to that is simple, don't listen to it. Pick and choose your favorite service providers and ignore the rest. Even on the Squeezebox now, I don't listen to over 90% of what is offered. We should be so lucky to wade through excess content to find what we want.

castalla
2012-08-20, 11:47
And as to the complaint that the Roku model generates a lot of uninteresting content, the solution to that is simple, don't listen to it. Pick and choose your favorite service providers and ignore the rest. Even on the Squeezebox now, I don't listen to over 90% of what is offered. We should be so lucky to wade through excess content to find what we want.

Don't want to start a Roku Wars debate, but really there's no comparison between the quality services which are available on Logi and the hotchpotch of religious nutters, prepubescent youths aping around on video clips, clapped-out old video and film services which constitute the major Roku offerings!

In any event, the nature of the beasts are very different - Roku serves up video junk, and Logi opens up the amazing world of international radio services. Even the Tunein channel on Roku is crippled because the stupid box can only stream mp3 audio,

erland
2012-08-20, 11:59
Content providers will show interest if they see sufficient market penetration for the squeezebox. They do a cost/benefit analysis just like Logitech. If the missing content providers see that they can reach a tipping point for eardrums, they'lll come to the platform.

Which is also why it's hard to use the Roku philosophy before you have the volume, the content providers basically don't want to invest in making a proprietary solution for a specific product before they are sure they can get enough users on it and the dilemma is that the product won't get more users before the content providers have done their part with the Roku model.

But I guess that as a content provider it's a matter of:
- Either doing an analysis if you believe the manufacturer (Logitech, Roku, ...) will be able to sell enough devices and make the investment in advance to help them (and yourself) getting more users.
- Or just deciding to wait and do the investment later when the manufacturer has sold enough devices to make it interesting.



In order for Logitech to be more mass market, it should lower the price, turn up the volume and get rid of the LCD screen to keep the cost down (it's more efficient to put control into the user's hands on already owned multi-purpose devices,like iPeng on the iPad and the iPhone).

I agree on the Squeezebox Touch if it would significantly lower the price, personally I still doubt that dropping the LCD would bring the Touch below $99 which I think is needed to make it attractive to the mass market who can purchase a AppleTV or AirPort Express for $99.

I think the Squeezebox Radio still needs an LCD to be useful in kitchen and bedroom, but I could see use for a cheap device without display and without hard buttons but with a built-in speaker. It wouldn't be as useful as the Squeezebox Radio, but some people might like such device if removing the display and hard buttons can make it a lot cheaper than the Squeezebox Radio.



Logitech already has the hardware for such lower cost products. It just needs to open up its software to make it easy for the content providers to be enticed to the platform.

Just out of interest, which hardware are you talking about, is it the Touch without display or are you referring to some non Squeezebox hardware ?



And as to the complaint that the Roku model generates a lot of uninteresting content, the solution to that is simple, don't listen to it. Pick and choose your favorite service providers and ignore the rest. Even on the Squeezebox now, I don't listen to over 90% of what is offered. We should be so lucky to wade through excess content to find what we want.

Right, I want to listen to Spotify (which is the best premium streaming service available in Sweden), how do I do that on a Roku device out of the box ?

mortslim
2012-08-20, 13:08
I want to listen to Spotify (which is the best premium streaming service available in Sweden), how do I do that on a Roku device out of the box ?

Roku has an official Plex channel. Plex connects the Roku to a media server.

“Plex Media Server seamlessly connects your Plex clients with all of your local and online media. The combination of centralized library management, streaming of online content, and powerful transcoding functionality provides an unrivaled level of flexibility and ease of use.”

“Plex Media Server runs on your Mac, PC, or compatible NAS device and serves your media to all of your Plex clients.”

http://www.plexapp.com/getplex/index.php

also: how to stream Spotify to the Roku

http://forums.roku.com/viewtopic.php?f=28&t=44695&start=0


which hardware are you talking about, is it the Touch without display or are you referring to some non Squeezebox hardware ??

Here are examples of Logitech products that don’t have a screen and should be able to adapted to Squeezebox funtionality:

"Logitech Wireless Speaker Adapter for Bluetooth Audio Devices"

http://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Wirel.../dp/B004VM1T5S

"Logitech Wireless Boombox for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch with Bluetooth"

http://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Wireless-Boombox-iPhone-touch/dp/B005KQ2O26/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1345493365&sr=8-3-fkmr0&keywords=%22Logitech+Wireless+Boombox+for+iPad%2C+ iPhone+and+iPod+touch+with+Bluetooth%22

aubuti
2012-08-20, 14:53
In order for Logitech to be more mass market, it should lower the price, turn up the volume and get rid of the LCD screen to keep the cost down (it's more efficient to put control into the user's hands on already owned multi-purpose devices,like iPeng on the iPad and the iPhone).

Here are examples of Logitech products that don’t have a screen and should be able to adapted to Squeezebox funtionality:

"Logitech Wireless Speaker Adapter for Bluetooth Audio Devices"

http://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Wirel.../dp/B004VM1T5S

"Logitech Wireless Boombox for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch with Bluetooth"

http://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Wireless-Boombox-iPhone-touch/dp/B005KQ2O26/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1345493365&sr=8-3-fkmr0&keywords=%22Logitech+Wireless+Boombox+for+iPad%2C+ iPhone+and+iPod+touch+with+Bluetooth%22
I'm probably missing something, or maybe the other thread about "Better-Logitech-products-than-the-Squeezeboxes (http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?95977-Better-Logitech-products-than-the-Squeezeboxes)" has come full circle here. By those examples it looks like Logitech has already done what you suggested in the earlier post. The price is low, control is from the assumed-to-be-already-owned mobile device, and judging by the hundreds of 4.5 star Amazon reviews the mass market loves them. The content issue is somewhat solved because that is provided via the source, and there are apps for Deezer, Pandora, Spotify, Stitcher and lord knows what for the iPad and other mobile devices. I could see using them in certain settings, though not as SB replacements.

So what adaptations to SB functionality would you propose? I see four things missing. One is wifi / ethernet. A second is multi-room capability, particularly sync'ing in different rooms (an essential feature for me). Third is decent quality audio hardware (DAC, better circuits, digital outputs on the speaker adapter, better amp and speakers on the boombox). Go down that road and kiss your cost savings goodbye, because they all cost a lot more than the dime-a-dozen LCD screen. And fourth is the flexibility and scalability of LMS software. If I'm sitting in a suite (or a suit) at Logitech HQ, my question would be why adapt them at all to be SBs? This kind of product may be exactly the kind of thing Logitech knows how to produce, market, and support. EDIT: Unlike SBs.

audio53
2012-08-21, 18:46
... So they put much more effort into it than Logitech (advertising, R&D, etc..). The survival of Logitech does not depend on SB, the survival of Sonos depends on their products.


Not sure I can agree with the R&D part of this statement. Sonos has yet to come out with a product capable of playing hi-rez files like 24/96. Their line seems rather stagnant. For that reason alone Sonos is off the table for me. If they ever update their player with hi-rez capability then they will have my interest.

garym
2012-08-21, 18:51
Not sure I can agree with the R&D part of this statement. Sonos has yet to come out with a product capable of playing hi-rez files like 24/96. Their line seems rather stagnant. For that reason alone Sonos is off the table for me. If they ever update their player with hi-rez capability then they will have my interest.

I have very little hirez, but the Sonos deal killer for me is the inability to handle more than about 60,000 files (except in some back door clunky way involving windows media player). I have 70,000 files and I'm only a third of my way through ripping my CDs.

erland
2012-08-21, 22:31
I have very little hirez, but the Sonos deal killer for me is the inability to handle more than about 60,000 files (except in some back door clunky way involving windows media player). I have 70,000 files and I'm only a third of my way through ripping my CDs.

I understand why they neither focus on 24/96 nor 65,000+ libraries, the main reasons are likely that the amount of users with a lot of 24/96 files who also cares about audio quality or the amount of users with 65,000+ libraries, is both probably fairly small compared to the amount of users they can gain in other areas. Adding a new streaming service would probably easily give them a lot more users than what adding 24/96 and support for 65,000+ libraries would do.

If I've understood correctly you can get around the 65,000+ limitation by using a PC as server using WMP, Sonospy or similar solution. It will of course require you to have the PC powered on but this is also the case for Squeezebox which needs LMS/SBS to be running on a PC if you want to have larger libraries than what can be supported with the built-in server in a Squeezebox Touch. Of course, I don't really have a Sonos myself, so maybe WMP/Sonospy creates other problems/limitations.

The biggest obstacle for me with Sonos is their more closed model which makes it harder (but probably not impossible) to add functionality through third party add-ons if Sonos doesn't want to develop a certain functionality I like to have. Still, I've sometimes been thinking about getting one just to evaluate it a bit, I'm just a bit scared that I won't see the potential unless I switch to Sonos in all rooms and that's not something I'm prepared to do yet as the Squeezebox system I have really works great.

maggior
2012-08-22, 05:49
I know Sonos has controller apps for phones and tablets, but I don't think there are players. That would be a deal breaker for me at this point since I regularly use my andriod media player and my iPod Touch as portable squeezeboxes in my house and on family trips when we have access to WiFi.