rpiswag
Posts: 806
Joined: Mon May 19, 2014 10:04 pm

Raspberry Pi 2B as a Media Streamer

Mon Mar 30, 2015 1:05 am

I love the Raspberry Pi and all of it's DIY goodness and I was thinking could my Raspberry Pi 2B be as functional as a commercially available media streamer like the roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV etcetera. All I need for the pi 2B to do is for it to stream Hulu and Netflix with a xbmc or like OS.
A computer's power can't be just measured Gigahertz. It is the same thing with us humans.

martinjh99
Posts: 34
Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2014 2:35 pm

Re: Raspberry Pi 2B as a Media Streamer

Mon Mar 30, 2015 7:05 am

Yes it can - grab openelec from http://openelec.tv - make sure you grab the Pi2 version not the Pi1...

I had a Pi1 runnong OSMC which is another media centre using Kodi and the Pi2 is a lot faster than the Pi1

Dont use Hulu and Netflix but I'm sure that there is a plugin for Kodi for those apps. Kodi is the latest version of XBMC :)

ghans
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Location: Germany

Re: Raspberry Pi 2B as a Media Streamer

Mon Mar 30, 2015 9:51 am

Netflix is still unsupported on the Raspberry Pi (and this will propably never change beacuse of the DRM mess).

ghans
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rpiswag
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Joined: Mon May 19, 2014 10:04 pm

Re: Raspberry Pi 2B as a Media Streamer

Mon Mar 30, 2015 10:23 am

So there is a plugin for kodi so I can watch hulu? Is that hulu or hulu+? On the kodi website their is no place to download kodi. Where do I download it?
A computer's power can't be just measured Gigahertz. It is the same thing with us humans.

fruitoftheloom
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Location: Delightful Dorset

Re: Raspberry Pi 2B as a Media Streamer

Mon Mar 30, 2015 10:52 am

rpiswag wrote:So there is a plugin for kodi so I can watch hulu? Is that hulu or hulu+? On the kodi website their is no place to download kodi. Where do I download it?
KODI is the interface which has replaced XBMC, it is not an Operating System :roll:

Both OpenElec & OSMC now use the KODI interface ;)

http://kodi.wiki/view/Add-ons


All this and more can be found by Googling :!:
Thinking outside the box is better than burying your head in the sand...

LeoJr2015
Posts: 11
Joined: Sun Mar 01, 2015 4:25 pm

Re: Raspberry Pi 2B as a Media Streamer

Mon Mar 30, 2015 2:25 pm

Plex is also a good choice for streaming movies, it has a lot of codecs built in

kphammond9
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Apr 05, 2014 5:01 pm

Re: Raspberry Pi 2B as a Media Streamer

Wed Apr 01, 2015 4:16 pm

It is possible to use the RPi and Kodi to watch Hulu and Netflix... sort of. Hulu, Netflix, Amazon Instant Video, etc. are reluctant to serve content to open source platforms like Linux/Kodi. They release apps on closed platforms like Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, etc. and use DRM protection to keep it where they want it: on only authorized platforms. My guess is they get a kickback from the platform developers, which is then rolled into the price of the hardware. I don't know the ins and outs of the politics/arrangements, but I think that's how it works.

If you are set on using the RasPi/Kodi approach, you can subscribe to PlayOn, which has a Kodi plugin (last time I checked, which was last year). It works a little like Plex, where you run a backend server on a PC (which is DRM compliant) and the software transcodes the video and streams it to the PlayOn client app in Kodi (or on your phone/tablet).

A couple caveats:
- PlayOn is not free. They have a 30 day refund policy and were pretty good about refunding me.
- The Kodi app is clunky (again, this info is 1+ years old). It works, but it's not pretty.
- PlayOn will not stream HD from Amazon Instant Video. This was the deal-breaker for me. Amazon adds HDCP protection to its content and PlayOn can't circumvent that (as of a year ago). It will send an SD stream.
- Although PlayOn says this is all legal, it is, in effect, circumventing DRM. So the content providers may disagree.

If your only goal is to watch Hulu and Netflix, you'd be better off going with a Chromecast or FireTV stick, which is still at the same price point as a Raspberry Pi. However, I would NEVER discourage anyone from buying a RasPi! If nothing else, it's a fun project to fiddle with and maybe PlayOn's limitations aren't a problem for you.

EDIT: According to the fine print on PlayOn's website, upgrading to XBMC Helix will fix the HD streaming issues. Kodi 14 is Helix, so...
Last edited by kphammond9 on Wed Apr 01, 2015 4:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

kphammond9
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Apr 05, 2014 5:01 pm

Re: Raspberry Pi 2B as a Media Streamer

Wed Apr 01, 2015 4:20 pm

LeoJr2015 wrote:Plex is also a good choice for streaming movies, it has a lot of codecs built in
Plex won't do Netflix or Hulu, afaik. They used to have community-written channels that would, but they were dropped when DRM was added to the services. This may have changed in the last year, but I doubt it.

But you're right, Plex is a great program and I use it all the time. It just doesn't address the OP's needs.

ghans
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Location: Germany

Re: Raspberry Pi 2B as a Media Streamer

Wed Apr 01, 2015 4:21 pm

Does the PlayOn workaround allow watching Netflix in HD ?


ghans
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kphammond9
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Apr 05, 2014 5:01 pm

Re: Raspberry Pi 2B as a Media Streamer

Wed Apr 01, 2015 4:34 pm

ghans wrote:Does the PlayOn workaround allow watching Netflix in HD ?


ghans
See the edit to my previous post. It's a solid maybe.

ghans
Posts: 7883
Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2011 8:30 pm
Location: Germany

Re: Raspberry Pi 2B as a Media Streamer

Wed Apr 01, 2015 5:51 pm

Just curious , did you recently re-test this workaround
or are you recalling things from memory ? When did you
initially try PlayON / Raspberry Pi / Netflix ?

ghans
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kphammond9
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Apr 05, 2014 5:01 pm

Re: Raspberry Pi 2B as a Media Streamer

Wed Apr 01, 2015 6:43 pm

ghans wrote:Just curious , did you recently re-test this workaround
or are you recalling things from memory ? When did you
initially try PlayON / Raspberry Pi / Netflix ?

ghans
It's been about a year since I tried it and I am recalling it from memory. I was using a Frodo-based version of XBMC. PlayOn says Helix versions support HD streaming, but I have not tested it, nor do I intend to. I use the built-in apps on my TVs and Chromecast to fill in the gaps that Kodi doesn't cover (Netflix, Hulu, HBO Go, WatchESPN, etc.). I originally wanted an all-in-one interface solution, which is why I was looking into PlayOn, but now that I have my current set-up, it's not necessary. Still would be nice, but not worth the subscription price, especially if their Kodi app interface hasn't significantly improved.

kphammond9
Posts: 19
Joined: Sat Apr 05, 2014 5:01 pm

Re: Raspberry Pi 2B as a Media Streamer

Thu Apr 02, 2015 3:35 pm

New info on the subject, sort of.
https://discourse.osmc.tv/t/amazon-prim ... i-2/636/19
I haven't investigated this myself yet, but i did start setting up OSMC on a RPi2 last night. I'll look into this soonish.

For those who don't know, OSMC is the new incarnation of Raspbmc, sort of. The dev who wrote Raspbmc, Sam Nazarko, has replaced it with OSMC, which is a media center incorporating Debian Jessie and Kodi 14 (Helix). It's brand new and is post-alpha/pre-release at the moment, but it's very pretty and snappy. People are saying that the Amazon plugin works and is streaming HD. OSMC Pi builds are located on the RasPi downloads page.
http://www.raspberrypi.org/downloads/

Sam himself says that a Netflix solution on the Pi is unlikely, due to their DRM scheme. But his proprietary hardware, the Vero, may be able to do it:
https://discourse.osmc.tv/t/osmc-incorp ... ix-etc/354

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