How to use Remote Player
For starters, let’s understand how Remote Player does what it does: playing and mixing your audio content in all of your devices simultaneously.
The unique feature of Remote Player is that it stores the audio data inside each of your devices: the device you use to control your audio (we call this one Guide device) and all the devices of your audience where the sound is played (we call them Audience devices). Hence, the communication between the Guide device and the Audience devices happens only by sending the commands to change audio, but not by transmitting the entire content.
The software is designed in this way thinking about the quality of your audio experience: when you run your project, you don’t need to transmit a lot of data and worry about your audience losing part of the content if the connection in one or a few of your devices gets worse or disappears completely. Also, if you are doing a soundwalk where your audience members can appear far from the Guide device, their audio quality will not worsen and will not stop, no matter the distance, even if they go out of the network reach. The audio track will play, in as good quality as the file is, as long as it receives a command to change the track. Even if your Audience devices lose a signal when you change the track, as soon as their device is reconnected, Remote Player will jump to exactly the same place of your audio that is currently played in the Guide device.
When it comes to transmitting the commands, it is not necessary to have internet in either of your devices.
However, you will need an internet connection to upload files to all of your smartphones after you sort your content in the Manager Application and move to the step of syncing the content.
Also, bear in mind that you will probably need one active SIM card for your set up.
All of this will be detailed in the instructions below.
USING MANAGER APPLICATION
Manager Application is used to upload and sort out your audio content, and to select how your audio will be played. Please note that Manager Application is not optimized for use on mobile devices and non-HTML5 browsers. We recommend using the latest desktop browser version for the best user experience.
Login using your gmail account at app.remoteplayer.io
CREATE A NEW PROJECT
Before you start creating your playlist, you need to create a new Project: press the CREATE NEW button, and give your project a name.
CREATE A NEW PLAYLIST
Note that one project can have an unlimited number of playlists. This might be useful while you are testing your creative ideas or if you are designing a project where your audience splits into smaller groups at some point during the experience, and thus requires playlists with differing content.
If you are just starting, you need to create your first playlist by pressing the CREATE NEW button. Give your playlist a name and press SAVE.
To add main tracks to your playlist, press Browse and select your audio file.
Note that Remote Player supports the following audio formats: mp3, wav, flac.
For every track you add you have a possibility to specify two optional parameters: Cross fade and Fade out.
You can use an optional Cross fade parameter to specify the time you want your track to mix with the preceding track. The parameter, adjusted in milliseconds by using a slider, specifies the duration of the previous track getting quieter and the current track getting louder.
Please note that since Cross fade parameter affects the start of the current track, if you specify the Cross fade value of the first track of your playlist, it will automatically turn into a Fade in parameter, meaning that the first track will gradually become louder from silence (as there is no previous track for it to mix with).
Fade out is an optional parameter that can be used in the last track of your playlist. It specifies the time during which your last track will get quieter. Fade out parameter will only be visible in the last track of your playlist. If you enter the Fade out parameter for the current track, and then create another track below with the Cross fade value, the latter will override the previous track’s Fade out.
Fade in, Cross fade and Fade out values are graphically represented with arrows in your main playlist page, and you can edit them at any time by pressing button of the corresponding track.
You can also drag and drop tracks you upload in the main playlist window if you want to change their order. Click on the icon and drag your track where you want it to be relocated. All track’s parameters will also move together with the track.
If you wish, you can add an optional Waiting track by pressing ADD WAITING TRACK button or Pause track by pressing ADD PAUSE TRACK button.
Waiting track can be used if your audience arrives at the start location at different times and you want to hand them the equipment and play something while they wait until the full group is ready. The audio can be an introduction or instructions about your project, background music or something else.
Pause track can be used during your audio experience if you feel you might need to stop the audio flow for some artistic or technical reasons, for example a long wait at a traffic light or a technical problem in one of the devices.
Both of these tracks also have optional Cross fade parameters that work in the same way as described above.
That’s all you need to know about creating your playlist. Make sure you add all your tracks and specify the additional parameters. When you are done, you can move to the next step.
CREATE A CHANNEL
Now you are done with your playlist, and it’s time to create a channel that you will then connect with your playlist.
A channel points to a source where your audio will be played. It is like a bridge between your playlist and the devices where your audio will be played.
We designed channels as separate entities for a few reasons. Having multiple channels will be handy when you create more than one project and use different devices for each of them, or if you have an audience splitting into smaller groups during your audio experience. Please also note that several channels can be assigned to one playlist. This can be handy when you have multiple sets of devices for the same project, for example if your audience leaves the start location in small groups every 30 minutes and goes through the same route with different guides.
In order to create a new channel, you need to go to the Channels section by selecting a button CHANNELS at the left sidebar of the Manager Application.
Press the CREATE NEW button. Give your channel a name.
Choose a type: select NATIVE.
ASSIGN A CHANNEL TO A PLAYLIST
Now, when you have a channel created, you need to assign your channel to your playlist.
Go back to a PROJECTS section in the left sidebar.
Go to your project’s playlists by pressing
Select your playlist by pressing
Press next to the word ‘Channels:’ and assign the channel to your playlist.
That’s it. Now it’s time to turn on your smartphones and sync them to your media.
While proceeding through the instructions below, please make sure that all your phones are connected to the same wi-fi network with access to the internet.
DOWNLOAD REMOTE PLAYER APP TO YOUR DEVICES
SYNC CONTENT WITH YOUR GUIDE DEVICE
First, let’s configure the device you are planning to use as a Guide device, that is a device that will have a player window open to control your audio.
In the Manager Application on your web browser, go to a CHANNELS section and go to your channel by pressing . You should see a QR code. Keep this window open on your PC screen.
Open the app in the phone you are planning to use as a Guide device for your project.
Allow the app access to the phone's camera.
Press SCAN BARCODE and scan the QR code with your device.
Choose GUIDE PHONE mode and press the OK button.
Now the Remote Player app will download the content of your playlist. This might take some time depending on your network’s speed and the type, length and quantity of your audio files.
When the download of all of your files is finished, you should see a player’s screen with your tracks in the playlist.
That’s all with setting up the Guide device. Now let’s move on to setting up your Audience devices.
SYNC CONTENT WITH YOUR AUDIENCE DEVICES
The process is very similar, but even simpler.
Open the app in your first Audience device.
Allow the app access to the phone's camera.
Press SCAN BARCODE and scan the same QR code from your channel window in your browser with your device.
Keep the default AUDIENCE MODE selected and press the OK button.
Wait until the app downloads your content.
When the download is finished, you will see a black screen. This is the screen your audience will see when you hand them the client phones.
Repeat the same steps with all devices you intend to use as Audience devices.
CHOOSE HOW YOU WANT TO PLAY YOUR CONTENT
PLAYING USING LOCAL WIFI NETWORK (DOES NOT REQUIRE INTERNET CONNECTION)
Now all your devices are synced, but before you start playing your content, you can choose how you want to play it.
As you have just finished syncing the content, all your devices are still connected to the same network with internet connection.
If your audio experience is happening within the reach of this network, you can keep it as it is. All your devices will play simultaneously as long as they are connected to the same network.
However, if you are planning to go out of the wi-fi connection reach (and this happens with most of the projects designed with Remote Player), you can disconnect your devices from the wi-fi with internet, and instead, first, create a hotspot in your Guide device and, second, connect all your Audience devices to the hotspot network of your Guide device.
Please note that most of the Android devices require a SIM card in order to create a hotspot, so you will probably need one active SIM card in your Guide device. If it's a prepaid SIM card, it doesn’t need to have a credit or access to the internet.
The other option is to have a mobile WiFi router (sometimes called MiFi). These devices act as WiFi hotspot and can connect all your devices together. Usually, MiFi devices have better signal strength so they cover a bigger area.
As Android always scans for available WiFi networks and tries to choose best (as it understands), there is a risk that the device can switch to another WiFi network in range. So, once audio content is synced, it’s advisable to remove all the WiFi networks from the devices except the only one you use for tour. You can do this by selecting the WiFi network on the device and pressing the “Forget” button.
Keep in mind that most Android phones have limits on how many devices can connect to hotspot. In most cases, limits vary from 8 to 16 phones. MiFi devices tend to have larger limits and can go up to 64 devices (depends on model).
In these instructions we will not go into detail of how to create a hotspot as this is quite straightforward. If you do need help with creating a hotspot, please search online, there are plenty of good instructions.
When all your devices are connected to the same network, it’s time to play!
PLAYING USING MOBILE INTERNET
If all your devices have internet connection (and SIM card), you can just start playing, no other actions are required!
Let’s look at the Guide device screen to understand how Remote Player interface works.
When you just open your Guide device app, if you have a Waiting track uploaded, the ‘Waiting’ source will be selected and Remote Player will automatically start playing the track. If there’s no Waiting track uploaded, the Remote Player will start in silence.
When you want to start playing the first track from your main Playlist, you can do it in two different ways: you can change the Source to ‘Playlist’, in which case the Waiting track will stop playing and you (and your audience) will hear nothing until you press
Or you can directly press In this case the 1st track of your main Playlist will start playing immediately (or, if you have specified the Cross fade value, it will crossfade with the Waiting track).
Let’s assume now that the 1st track of your Playlist is already playing, and you want to jump to the 2nd track. For this you need to press button, and the track will change (or crossfade).
There’s also a button and here we would like you to pay particular attention to how it is used. When you press the button once, it will go back to the previous track, but instead of moving to the beginning of it, Remote Player will start playing from exactly the time when it ended. For example, if you change your 1st track to the 2nd track at 05:10, and at 00:10 of the 2nd track you press once, it will go back to 05:10 of the 1st track. This seems tricky, but is actually very handy: mistakes happen and sometimes people tend to press the forward button unintentionally. This way helps to fix the mistake: if you change the track when you actually don’t want this, you can always go back to where your audio was playing. If you use the crossfades, your audience normally will not even notice such a change. Please note that if you want, you can also go back to the beginning of the previous track by pressing twice.
If you have uploaded the Pause track, when you select the ‘Pause’ source, the track will start playing. If there’s no Pause track uploaded, the audio will pause with silence.
Note that when you select ‘Pause’ source, the track that was playing in the main playlist pauses at the exact time you selected ‘Pause’ and you can always go back to where your audio stopped by pressing However, while the ‘Pause’ source is on, you are also free to scroll through your playlist and select any other track to continue.
One last thing about cross fades
The cross fade values you specify for every track also affect the relation between your tracks in the ‘Playlist’ as well as the tracks in ‘Waiting’ and ‘Pause’ sources. For example, if you select ‘Pause’ and then jump to playing your current track from the Playlist with the cross fade value of 10 seconds, the same value of 10 seconds will be used to crossfade the ‘Pause’ track with the current track.
If you make any changes in your Playlist in the Manager Application, you don’t need to do anything: Remote Player app will sync with these changes automatically when you start the app. However, for the synchronization to happen, you need to make sure that your devices are connected to the network with the internet access. If, when you start the app, your devices are still on the local hotspot network, Remote Player will keep working with the old files.