Port XBMC to TouchPad (webos)
#1
Just bought TouchPad yesterday and its indeed a very nice tablet. Hopefully XBMC developers will have some to play around.

WebOS 3.0.2 is suprisingly easy to get root access. All you need to do is to install palm-novacom and then launch novaterm providing you have enabled the developer mode on your touchpad.

For me WebOS 3.0.2 looks like just another linux distributation. It uses ipkg to manage all the packages and most linux standard libraries are installed by default. Some of the packages installed are quite interesting: alsa, ffmpeg, glib-2.0, gstreamer, libsdl, opengles, pulseaudio. Here is the output of "gst-inspect | grep sink"
Code:
udp:  dynudpsink: UDP packet sender
udp:  multiudpsink: UDP packet sender
udp:  udpsink: UDP packet sender
palmvideosink:  palmvideosink: palmvideosink
pulseaudio:  pulsesink: PulseAudio Audio Sink
palmjpegencfilesink:  palmjpegencfilesink: palmjpegencfilesink
skypekit:  skypeaudiosink: SkypeKit PCM audio sink
skypekit:  skypevideosink: SkypeKit h264 video sink
coreelements:  fakesink: Fake Sink
coreelements:  fdsink: Filedescriptor Sink
coreelements:  filesink: File Sink
gio:  giosink: GIO sink
gio:  giostreamsink: GIO stream sink
alsa:  alsasink: Audio sink (ALSA)
app:  appsink: AppSink
playback:  playsink: Player Sink

Therefore it looks like
1) alsa/pulseaudio is used for audio output
2) gstreamer is used as the backend for audio/video playback. The DSP node is here /dev/pmem_adsp
3) FB or openGLES is used for vidio output instead of x11/xorg.

On WebOS development page it say for c++ developement the CodeSourcery Toolchain—Sourcery G++ Lite for ARM GNU/Linux should be used. This means webos uses just standary libraries and therefore porting is minimal. The only problem would be replace the ffmepg backend by gstreamer which I believe someone working on meego has done.

Here is the all the default installed packages on TouchPad with WebOS 3.0.2 http://pastebin.com/zwm3G18c
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#2
Contrary to what HP has said about WebOS, haven't they essentially abandoned it by dropping all the products that use it?
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#3
HP said they would still support the software. I have 32gb one, and I too would like to see a XBMC remote for the Touchpad.
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#4
HP has announced they will halt production of ALL WebOS devices. The Touchpad failed spectacularly, with fire sale losses literally weeks after its release. Up until the recent announcements, HP was firmly committed to WebOS and WebOS devices.

No hardware platforms, a bad history, and a weak commitment by the owner means WebOS's chances are near zero.

This doesn't preclude porting XBMC to WebOS. Keep in mind though that should someone try to port it they're porting to a dead platform.
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#5
I'd just like to point out that, regardless of whether it's a "dead" platform or not, as of this writing, the firesale has caused it to become the second most common single tablet on the market next to the iPad. It also has a larger market of tablet apps than Android according to a recent NYTimes article, and it's app store guidelines are MUCH looser than Apple's, as they allow sideloading and third party app stores (the primary one being the homebrew app Preware). Given this, I believe it might be lenient enough to comply with the GPL and allow XBMC to be distributed through the main App Catalog for the Touchpad. Frankly, I think this would make it worth the effort (especially since there's already an ARM port for the iPad, and the native SDK for webOS is very similar to iOS).
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#6
But aren't a lot of people rooting and putting Android OS on this?
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#7
That was the original plan for many people, yes. But Honeycomb is closed source, and to my knowledge, no one knows if Ice Cream sandwich will be open source, so they're only working on getting Gingerbread on it, which obviously sucks a bit as a tablet OS since it wasn't built as one. As such, many people are waiting on future developments on this and/or opting to keep using WebOS on the device, with Android as a fallback I case webOS is well and truly dead after a year or so (HP/Palm provides the ROM for all of their devices freely, to the point where so long as there's no hardware damage, you can reflash it whenever you like, even if the device doesn't boot, making it virtually unbrickable). There was even a massive spike in app sales after the sale, which shows many people will keep the original OS on it (otherwise why buy apps for a "dead" platform if you're just going to replace the OS?).

PS- You don't really root a webOS device. You just put it in dev mode which allows you to sideload any app you like, and gives you terminal access when hooked up to a pc with the SDK installed. There are no 3rd party hacks required at all for homebrew on the platform, by design, and both Palm and now HP have been so friendly to the homebrew community that they've sent them prerelease devices, a multi-thousand dollar server, and even thanked them for their work openly on stage. Can you imagine Google doing that for the CyanogenMod team?
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#8
Cintax Wrote:I'd just like to point out that, regardless of whether it's a "dead" platform or not, as of this writing, the firesale has caused it to become the second most common single tablet on the market next to the iPad. It also has a larger market of tablet apps than Android according to a recent NYTimes article, and it's app store guidelines are MUCH looser than Apple's, as they allow sideloading and third party app stores (the primary one being the homebrew app Preware).

Pretty sad for the non-iOS market when a fire sale of less than 1/4 million tablet devices becomes #2 behind the iPad. Smile Think about it... 1/4 million vs several million. Makes me wonder just WTH is going on with the non-iOS table market the past year.
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#9
Honestly, Android on tablets probably won't be decent till Ice cream sandwich at least. My dad got a Xoom a while back and I was really disappointed by it. It's what made me try the Touchpad as opposed to an Android tablet, which I originally planned to get. WebOS has some performance issues, but it feels much more polished for the form factor than Android right now.
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#10
I really would like to see this port happen to run XBMC natively on the TouchPad. I suppose the alternative would be to install Ubuntu on the TouchPad (already possible) and and install XBMC on there, but it would still at least need to be compiled for ARM architecture.
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#11
elmerohueso Wrote:I really would like to see this port happen to run XBMC natively on the TouchPad. I suppose the alternative would be to install Ubuntu on the TouchPad (already possible) and and install XBMC on there, but it would still at least need to be compiled for ARM architecture.

I might be mistaken but shouldn't it be possible to compile xbmc and install it on a touchpad running ubuntu? I haven't done much compiling of xbmc but when you compile for atv, is that not arm? As I said fairly new to xbmc so please be kind! Lol
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#12
shanewilliams Wrote:I might be mistaken but shouldn't it be possible to compile xbmc and install it on a touchpad running ubuntu? I haven't done much compiling of xbmc but when you compile for atv, is that not arm? As I said fairly new to xbmc so please be kind! Lol

Yes, it can be compiled for ARM, and there are threads with some people who've done it, but no one's publicly released their ARM versions yet (that I can find, at least).
However, I would definitely prefer a native XBMC port.
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#13
davilla Wrote:Pretty sad for the non-iOS market when a fire sale of less than 1/4 million tablet devices becomes #2 behind the iPad. Smile Think about it... 1/4 million vs several million. Makes me wonder just WTH is going on with the non-iOS table market the past year.

Say what? Android has 33% of the tablet marketshare, and iPad sales have dropped in the last quarter. Pretty sad, for Apple that is Smile)) . Android sold 4.6 milion tablets this quarter, so i don`t know in what freaking parallel reality does 1/4 million tablets > 4.6 million

http://reviews.cnet.com/8301-31747_7-200...=cnetRiver

Image
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#14
@GreenEyez

You might want to learn the difference between units shipped and units sold, here, let me help you http://daringfireball.net/2011/07/ipad_dominance
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#15
It might actually be helpful for him to understand the difference between a tablet and an OS. The chart he's showing (and what he said in his post) is that Android (an OS used on many tablets) is #2 behind iOS. iOS and Android are all operating systems. The original statement is that the TouchPad (a tablet, not an OS) is the #2 tablet behind the iPad (also a tablet, not an OS).
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