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-   -   Why No Offical Plugins\Add Ons? (http://forums.sagetv.com/forums/showthread.php?t=48730)

alton987 05-26-2010 07:53 AM

Why No Offical Plugins\Add Ons?
 
Does anyone have a idea why SageTV doesn't support any official plugins\add ons?

Don't service like Netflix\Pandora\Amazon VOD basically give the software away so they can get their software out as much as possible?

FYI, I have no idea what I'm talking about, just curious?

Slugger 05-26-2010 08:25 AM

Anything Sage would officially support would be in the core product, not a plugin. Plugins allow third party users to provide added/modified functionality to the core that Sage provides.

If Sage were to add support for something new, it'd just be added to the core.

alton987 05-26-2010 08:34 AM

Core
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Slugger (Post 427180)
Anything Sage would officially support would be in the core product, not a plugin. Plugins provide third party users to provide added/modified functionality to the core that Sage provides.

If Sage were to add support for something new, it'd just be added to the core.

Thats what I'm asking? Why not add all the services to the core. Then SageTV could postion it self in the standalone setop box business also?

Brent 05-26-2010 08:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by alton987 (Post 427164)
Don't service like Netflix\Pandora\Amazon VOD basically give the software away so they can get their software out as much as possible?

No. None of those services give it away as far as I know. If done properly within their rules (unlike PlayOn and Boxee) an agreement has to be reached and in some cases money changes hands. For instance, Microsoft has an agreement with Netflix to have the officially supported streaming built-in.

Slugger 05-26-2010 08:41 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by alton987 (Post 427186)
Thats what I'm asking? Why not add all the services to the core. Then SageTV could postion it self in the standalone setop box business also?

Because Sage doesn't want to officially support most (any?) plugins. Many reasons for that, but the main reason would be a lack of resources. To just take everyone's plugins and add them to the core and maintain them would require Sage to basically hire most of the people who write these things for free and pay them to do what they already do for free. I'm not a CFO, but that seems like an easy decision for me to make. :)

Of course, if Sage wanted to hire me (and the others in this forum) to write and maintain this stuff all day then I'd have something to think about. :D

alton987 05-26-2010 08:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Slugger (Post 427190)
Because Sage doesn't want to officially support most (any?) plugins. Many reasons for that, but the main reason would be a lack of resources. To just take everyone's plugins and add them to the core and maintain them would require Sage to basically hire most of the people who write these things for free and pay them to do what they already do for free. I'm not a CFO, but that seems like an easy decision for me to make. :)

Of course, if Sage wanted to hire me (and the others in this forum) to write and maintain this stuff all day then I'd have something to think about. :D

I think sage could easily compete with items like a Popcorn Hour\Boxe Box if it had some more officail add ons.

For example a native netflix app would be 1000% better than anytype of plugin.

Brent 05-26-2010 08:50 AM

I know you're asking this in part because:
1. 3rd party plugins can be more difficult to set up
2. 3rd party plugins typically have less-than-ideal documentation (although that is getting much better these days)
3. built-in is easier than plugins

Just don't forget to look at the advantages of this. Unlike some more closed environments (Apple & MS I'm looking at you), developers have the ability to build the functionality and/or look they want on their HTPC. This means:
  • features get to you faster
  • features that may not make financial sense to do for a company will still be added because $ isn't the main driver for 3rd party devs
I'm sure there are other advantages & disadvantages to the way its done here. But don't forget to look at both sides of the coin. You will find SageTV can take a lot more time and energy to set up - especially if you're going for all the extra add-ins/plugins. But it's worth it for most because of the added functionality & flexibility you get imo.

That doesn't mean SageTV can't or won't add features though. For instance, they actually had a Hulu feature that was about ready to go live until Hulu began locking those sort of apps out.

alton987 05-26-2010 09:00 AM

:D
Quote:

Originally Posted by Brent (Post 427197)
I know you're asking this in part because:
1. 3rd party plugins can be more difficult to set up
2. 3rd party plugins typically have less-than-ideal documentation (although that is getting much better these days)
3. built-in is easier than plugins

Just don't forget to look at the advantages of this. Unlike some more closed environments (Apple & MS I'm looking at you), developers have the ability to build the functionality and/or look they want on their HTPC. This means:
  • features get to you faster
  • features that may not make financial sense to do for a company will still be added because $ isn't the main driver for 3rd party devs
I'm sure there are other advantages & disadvantages to the way its done here. But don't forget to look at both sides of the coin. You will find SageTV can take a lot more time and energy to set up - especially if you're going for all the extra add-ins/plugins. But it's worth it for most because of the added functionality & flexibility you get imo.

That doesn't mean SageTV can't or won't add features though. For instance, they actually had a Hulu feature that was about ready to go live until Hulu began locking those sort of apps out.

I agree with everything you said, but I think you could have both. Especially if Sage ever tries to grow its market. The official add ons could attract more of the stand alone setup user, while the plugins could do more for the DVR users.

Plus I just really want a native Netflix\Pandora app :D

rmac321 05-26-2010 09:05 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brent (Post 427197)
I know you're asking this in part because:
1. 3rd party plugins can be more difficult to set up
2. 3rd party plugins typically have less-than-ideal documentation (although that is getting much better these days)
3. built-in is easier than plugins

Just don't forget to look at the advantages of this. Unlike some more closed environments (Apple & MS I'm looking at you), developers have the ability to build the functionality and/or look they want on their HTPC. This means:
  • features get to you faster
  • features that may not make financial sense to do for a company will still be added because $ isn't the main driver for 3rd party devs
I'm sure there are other advantages & disadvantages to the way its done here. But don't forget to look at both sides of the coin. You will find SageTV can take a lot more time and energy to set up - especially if you're going for all the extra add-ins/plugins. But it's worth it for most because of the added functionality & flexibility you get imo.

That doesn't mean SageTV can't or won't add features though. For instance, they actually had a Hulu feature that was about ready to go live until Hulu began locking those sort of apps out.

Also, some features and functions are things that SageTV won't add to the core for trademark/marketing/liability reasons, but they know users like them and are probably delighted knowing that 3rd party developers will fill the void. Commerical skipping is the best example.

Julianus 05-26-2010 09:06 AM

There is a lot simpler reason.
In order to put these plugins in the core they need to have well defined APIs with clear licensing.

Netflix is using DRM, that I understand is specific for Windows. So forget Linux and Mac.

Sage did included youtube and google video playback. Google has clearly defined APIs and they do not use DRM.

alton987 05-26-2010 09:08 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Julianus (Post 427204)
There is a lot simpler reason.
In order to put these plugins in the core they need to have well defined APIs with clear licensing.

Netflix is using DRM, that I understand is specific for Windows. So forget Linux and Mac.

Sage did included youtube and google video playback. Google has clearly defined APIs and they do not use DRM.

There are alot of setop boxes that use netflix aka roku box. Plus watch now works on Windows and Mac.

JetreL 05-26-2010 09:27 AM

Oh this slightly different topic I don't know why Sage is not on the subscription model. PlayOn is switching to this model and rightfully so. I am not eager to pay for SageTV but it really is a great product at a heck of a deal and want to make sure they stick around.

darcilicious 05-26-2010 10:51 AM

Interesting comments / opinions on this thread. Here are my $0.02 worth:

I use SageTV as my primary PVR because a) it's subscription-free and b) has the plugins I need (e.g web-based access). I don't really care if they get officially supported or not -- but I do think that in the long run an open-API with 3rd-party plugins is more sustainable than adding them to SageTV's core code.

The day SageTV becomes subscription-based is the day I lose web-based access to my PVR because I would switch to WMC7 in a heartbeat :(

alton987 05-26-2010 10:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JetreL (Post 427212)
Oh this slightly different topic I don't know why Sage is not on the subscription model. PlayOn is switching to this model and rightfully so. I am not eager to pay for SageTV but it really is a great product at a heck of a deal and want to make sure they stick around.

I disagree, non of the setop boxes have fees, and WMC is already free. Sage would really have to bring something new to the table to try and charge a fee.

pjpjpjpj 05-26-2010 10:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JetreL (Post 427212)
Oh this slightly different topic I don't know why Sage is not on the subscription model. PlayOn is switching to this model and rightfully so. I am not eager to pay for SageTV but it really is a great product at a heck of a deal and want to make sure they stick around.

First of all, SHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!! :D

Seriously, though, I suspect some people use Sage specifically because it DOES NOT have a monthly fee. I know I do. If it had a monthly fee, many users might just switch to paying the $5 per month (or $10, or $15, or whatever) to have DVR service from their cable/sat provider, and be done with it. Don't get me wrong, I know Sage offers way more than those DVRs ever will, but to some users, it might just be about $$$.

Remember, there are users who are OTA-only and don't pay anything to anyone for TV, ever (after up-front costs, obviously). I got into Sage because I wanted to be that way. If I were forced to pay a monthly fee, it would defeat the whole purpose.

ohpleaseno 05-26-2010 12:50 PM

yeah, subscription based would kill it instantly for me. I'm OTA only and don't pay a cable bill for a reason.

david1234 05-26-2010 01:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pjpjpjpj (Post 427231)
Remember, there are users who are OTA-only and don't pay anything to anyone for TV, ever (after up-front costs, obviously). I got into Sage because I wanted to be that way. If I were forced to pay a monthly fee, it would defeat the whole purpose.

Count me in the OTA crowd. I absolutely refuse to pay for TV in any form. I would consider paying for guide data, but it would have to be a very low subscription fee (like under 20 for the year). Any more than that, and I can go get it myself and import it!

Plus, for OTA, doesn't sage grab the guide data from the signal?

broconne 05-27-2010 10:05 AM

I would probably pay for Sage if the fee was reasonable and I knew that paying for that fee enabled Sage to get more features. If i had my choice between Sage Basic for $0 a month and Sage Premium (That included netflix watch now and cable card support) for $5 a month.. I would have the premium. I would probably pay up to $10 a month even.... Which is still a lot less than I pay for my Tivo's which come to $19 a month for both of them -- but of course they do have cable cards and netflix access....


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