Android Transporter on the Raspberry Pi

The Android Transporter allows you to share display content wirelessly with remote screens in real time. Now, the Android Transporter also runs on the Raspberry Pi which enables you to easily share the display content of your smartphone or tablet with a television set or a video projector. Just watch the amazing demo video.

The Android Transporter turns your smartphone or tablet together with the Raspberry Pi into a powerful media hub to watch movies, play games, or do slideshows. This way, the Raspberry Pi becomes maybe the cheapest gaming console or set-top box :-). See also our previous blog post about the Android Transporter. Stay tuned for the dual screen mode!  

89 Responses

  1. Bob Reply

    Worried the lag might be a bit too high for gaming.

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      Currently the latency is about 150ms. That is ok for car racing games and a lot of other games. But of course not for any kind of game. So we are still working to reduce the latency. Our current goal is to get below 100ms.

  2. h0ll0w Reply

    Looks fantastic so far guys! Keep up the great work, I hope this is ready for public consumption by the time the next batch of RP are sent out.

  3. Gabba82 Reply

    AWESOME!!!!! many thanks!!! hope to enjoy soon!!!

  4. Shawn Reply

    How was this done? Mind sharing the application so others can try it out?

    Thanks, Shawn

  5. Pyta Reply

    AirPlay, eat your heart out :)

  6. stderr Reply

    Sounds fantastic! One of the few programs I would like to buy more than 10€.

    Let me know if need a beta tester. (RasPi, Tablet and 3 Android-Phones available :) )

  7. vasile Reply

    Would this work with a wired Ethernet connection to RPi, and the phone connected to the wireless router in the same network?

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      Yes, it does!

  8. Rory Schmitz Reply

    Daniel, sounds like a must-have! Will the android app require root access to the phone/tablet?

    Reading stderr’s comment, I would also love to be a beta test if you need some real-world testing.

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      The Android Transporter requires a full firmware update since we have done adjustments to the whole Android platform. So root access will not work for the Android Transporter, but we are already in discussions with some well-known replacement firmware distributors and mobile development communities.

  9. Ron Olsberg Reply

    What operating system are you using on the Rasp Pi? What model USB Wifi dongle are you using? any problem getting it to work?

    Thanks Much
    Regards, Ron

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      We are currently using the Debian image from raspberrypi.org.
      The WiFi USB dongle is a Netgear N150 Wireless USB Microadapter. You have to use the drivers from the Realtek homepage to make it work.

  10. murak Reply

    Greate stuff! Looking forward to it!

  11. Chris Reply

    I’ve planned to utilise the CEC channel through HDMI to control the R-Pi media with my TV remotem BUT, this seems a lot better!

    Drawbacks for playing media directly from Pi storage or attached storage is the power drain, but if the content is stored and streamed from my Android phone i can play unlimited media through my Pi to the TV without that power drain.

    I’m a programmer and Pi owner so if any assistance or testing is required sign me up as i have no free time for anything else but getting the Pi to send media to my TV in the best possible manner.

  12. DAve Shillito Reply

    This looks great.

    Would be possible to add this app as a plugin to XBMC, so you could be runing XBMC as your media player on your Pi, and just switch over to view Android Transporter content?

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      I think that should work, but I am not that familiar with XBMC.
      Since we plan to release the Android Transporter for the Raspberry Pi as an open source project in the near future, the XBMC people can do so :).

    • Al Shaw Reply

      Read my mind! had exact same thought – got my Pi in the post yesterday and am itching to install xbmc. Then i saw this. A match made in heaven!

  13. Jake Reply

    Looks great! Would it be possible to stream like this from something other than a cell phone running Android? Would you be able to connect it to a device/computer running Windows 7?

    Thanks!

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      Yes, of course. When you can grab, encode and send the frames of a PC fast enough it will also work there.

  14. Rich Compton Reply

    Looks great. Any way to get notification when it comes out? I really would like to test this out on my Galaxy Nexus / Raspberry Pi!

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      You can either follow us on Twitter or subscribe to our RSS feed.
      We will keep you up to date on these channels.

  15. JMC Reply

    Keep up the great work. I hope to be one of the first people to give this a whirl.

    ESRLABS = genius idea

  16. Darrell Jones Reply

    Amazing work you guys. Hopefully you will be able to get this to a release point soon. Happy to offer my services as a Beta tester since I own a Galaxy Nexus and a Pi

  17. Frulko Reply

    It’s amazing really, but it’s only for Google nexus or every Android like HP Touchpad ?

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      Currently the Android Transporter runs on the Nexus S and on the Galaxy Nexus. But basically the Android Transporter runs any Android 4.x device that has a powerful and fast H.264 encoder/decoder.
      We plan to extend the Android Transporter support to some other handsets such as the Nexus 7. Stay tuned!

  18. Cierzniak Reply

    Hi, it’s great idea :) But how to obtain Pis software? Because ROM for Galaxy Nexus I get from second post about Transporter.
    It’s hard to extend supported phones? How deep you changed rom? Because I didn’t see any new files and big changes.. maybe I loose something?

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      Currently we only supply a ROM for the Nexus S. We haven’t released the Galaxy Nexus ROM yet. Also the Raspberry Pi software is not yet released. But we are working on it and hopefully we can release the first public beta in 2-4 weeks.
      At the moment we focus on the Nexus handsets with the Android Transporter. Therefor, we have done changes and extensions to the Android platform at various places.

  19. Charlie Callow Reply

    I have a Nexus One and a Galaxy Tab 10.1 both running CM9 (Android 4.0.4) and I am expecting delivery of my raspberry pi in the next few days. Is their anyway I could achieve this set up using these device’s?

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      Sorry, no. We currently only support the Nexus S and the Galaxy Nexus. We also plan to add support for the Galaxy S3 and the Nexus 7 in the near future.

      • Mason Reply

        Why is that? If its connecting via bluetooth or wifi, shouldn’t the screen resolution be the only varying factor here?

        • Daniel Himmelein Reply

          The limiting factor for the Android Transporter is the speed of the hardware H.264 encoders and decoders. That is the major part of the latency. So it really depends on the hardware. The network bandwidth is not an issue.

  20. kevin Reply

    excellent work and very interesting,
    I’ll try it on my Galaxy S3 as soon as you release it

    best regards,

  21. Sean Reply

    This is amazing. And I love that you are going to open source once stable. My question is, when using two android devices together, say projecting a phone screen to a tablet, are there any plans to allow the tablet to provide input to the phone?

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      Yes there are plans to do so. Currently we are working on streaming audio along with the video and on input events to control the master device from the client device.

  22. Aku Reply

    Looks awesome! I can’t wait for the release. We have been looking for a good way to project an android phone to a big screen while cord free.

  23. Raj Reply

    Amazing work you guys!!! i can’t wait test it on my HP touchpad to RasPi. Please please please….

  24. Sid Reply

    I had a similar idea where you can for example search for a video on youtube on your phone and then send it to Raspberry Pi to stream it on the TV rather then mirroring what you see on your phone. Basically you start any kind of action on your phone and then push it over to Raspberry Pi to continue processing it.

  25. chris Reply

    I’d love to be able to browse my picture gallery & get if full HD on TV with the possibility to scroll & zoom easily to parts I ‘d like to highlight :;)

  26. Benton Reply

    Are there plans for the client to be something other than a Pi or another android phone? Like streaming from android phone to a windows PC?

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      No, currently we do not have any plans to do so. But since this technology will be standardized by the Wi-Fi Alliance under the name Miracast I am pretty sure that there will be Windows clients.

  27. Kiyoshi Reply

    Seeing the video around 80 second, I can see a special icon like Wi-Fi connection (on the upper left side) as well as 3G connection (on the upper right side) of the desktop. Can the screen via 3G be mirrored to the display by Android Transformer?

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      In principal this would be possible, but currently we support only WiFi connections.

  28. Frank Reply

    Looks useful. Any intention to let it run also with older Android phones (e.g. HTC Desire HD)?
    Buying a £25 RaspPI and being forced to use a $500 Android device sounds a bit conflicting…

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      Sorry, but since we don’t have the time to support that much phones and Android versions, we currently stick with Android 4.x devices.

  29. mephisto Reply

    Why don’t use mpeg2-ts? Should be lots cheaper performance wise, and Bandwidth still shouldn’t be an issue..

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      The transport protocol does not matter that much. The hard problem really is to minimize the video encoding and decoding process. Furthermore, according to the IP Streaming of MPEG-4: Native RTP vs MPEG-2 Transport Stream whitepaper there are some benefits from using RTP instead of MPEG-2 TS.

  30. Nathan Reply

    Hey, this looks awesome! Can we expect a public beta soon? I got a Nexus 7, and I’ll be getting my Raspberry Pi in the mail later this week. So, if you’d like an extra tester for Nexus 7 support, I’m game. I’m not afraid to modify my firmware or do whatever else you need me to do. Thanks for responding to all these comments by the way, you guys rock. :-)

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      I hope we also get our Nexus 7 next week. Then we will be able to adjust the firmware and hopefully release a public beta.

  31. Kai Reply

    Looks like a very usefull project.
    Do you have any plans to integrate this as a plugin into the “Raspbmc” for the Pi? That would be the perfect mediacenter.

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      We plan to open source a version of the Android Transporter for the Raspberry Pi. So maybe the Raspbmc people like to integrate it :-).

  32. Elad Reply

    Thats amazing!!
    When will it be released for beta testing and open source development?

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      We plan to release the first beta in september. We will write about it :-).

      • Kyle Reply

        How can we get in on this beta testing?

        • Daniel Himmelein Reply

          We are currently working on the Nexus 7 to make it basically work. When this is done we will announce a beta test via Twitter.

          • Rick

            Any update on the beta testing status? I have a Nexus 7 and a Rasp Pi (B version) with the Netgear wifi adapter ready to go.

        • Daniel Himmelein Reply

          The Raspberry Pi software is now ready and we are currently trying to tune the Nexus 7. I think in 2-3 weeks we are ready to release a first beta. Stay tuned…

          • Friedrich

            Can every WIFI Stick be used? Or is a special one needed?

          • Daniel Himmelein

            The WiFi stick has to be supported by the Raspberry Pi Linux kernel. So there are a lot of different sticks that should work.

  33. Paul Reply

    Great idea. I’ve recently built my own NAS, where I store all my movies, music etc. Rasp PI is a bit slow for me to become fully functional HTPC, so I plan to buy Nexus 7 to play movies and stream them to my TV (not only to do that, but it’s a tempting idea). I can buy Nexus Q (299$) but Rasp PI and Android Transporter would be much cheaper :) I wish you a lot of luck, guys!

  34. tom jones Reply

    Are you planning on making a client for other linux distributions? Like debian or ubuntu? Also, some video cards may not have the ability to hardware decode the video stream on the client side, any change of decoding using opengl?

    I know someone previously asked for a windows client, but I thought a generic linux client wouldn’t be too much of a stretch. Regarding what I asked about, can’t opengl be used to assist in decoding a video stream where a hardware decoder isn’t present?

    Oh, please have a 1:1 mode. I noticed on a lot of android tablets/phones, what you see via hdmi on the hdmi display is not what you see on the device itself. E.g. bottom menu hidden, video playing fullscreen on hdmi but not on device. I think the main motivation is for movie playback but having menu’s hidden made it useless to use with a mouse/keyboard.

    But fantastic work! I need to get a couple of raspberry pi’s

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      We use VLC on Linux as client. It works quite well but the latency of VLC is not as good as that of a hardware accelerated media player. Let’s see how far we get on PCs with Ivy Bridge architectures.

  35. Sean Reply

    It’s September! Any plan’s on releasing the beta?

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      Yes! Next week we will do some more internal tests and docs. Then we are able to release a first public beta. It will be in the first week of October. Sorry fo the delay, but getting the Android Transporter up and running on the Nexus 7 took us some more days than expected :-).

      • jakob Reply

        Anyway it’s cool :D
        It would be very comfortable when the transporter app is highly integrated in the android OS. Like Nexus Q (No, I don’t have one :D) or Apple AirPlay (in iOS) ;)

  36. Scott Reply

    Any plans on porting the video over to the RCA so that it can make old TVs without hdmi usable.

  37. Jarrod Reply

    I have a simple question. What will need to be done on the Nexus 7 to use this? Is it just an app? or is it a full custom rom?

    • Jarrod Reply

      I should have read the other comments first. I see that it is a custom rom. Hopefully CyanogenMod will incorporate it or AOKP because most roms are based off of them.

  38. a fan Reply

    Some tegra 3 games are supporting stereoscopic 3d over HDMI. Would it be possible To enable this 3d slider when the nexus 7 is connected To the rapi

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      Sorry, I don’t think so.

  39. Friedrich Reply

    The first week of october ist almost over. I beta release today? :-) I am so excited about how it works.

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      The software is ready but the tech demo video is not. We will do the video today so we will definitely release the software package at the beginning of next week. Sorry for the additional delay.

      • Nathan Swenson Reply

        I’ve been following this comment thread for a long time, I’m excited that this is so close to completion. I’ve got my Nexus 7 and Raspberry Pi primed and ready :-)

        Are we still looking at a launch sometime this week?

      • Friedrich Reply

        Any news for release? My Raspi get`s dusty :-)

  40. Joseph Pires Reply

    Wow… why is this not out yet is already the start of the week (sorry keep up the good work)!! cant wait.. was just wondering these work on rooted Samsung 4.0.x devices?

  41. rafciass Reply

    any news about release yet? Its thursday now and I bet loads of people are waitin for it ;)

  42. Jack Reply

    Any update?

  43. Paul Reply

    Why does this require me to install a CFW, rather than an app(with root perms) or just a flashable patch.zip.

    I really want to try this, but i also can’t be bothered to have to install and set up all my apps again.. also will this mean i loose OTA updates from google?

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      Yes you would loose OTA updates from Google. What you can do is to install the original firmware from Google after playing around with this. You can also install both firmwares in parallel and switch between them using ROMManager.
      It is not an app but a whole custom ROM because we needed to change some Android platform interfaces. Maybe the native parts are still binary compatible with Android 4.1.1 but I am not really sure. (E.g. we added virtual functions to C++ classes which may have broken binary compatibility.)

  44. Olav Alexander Mjelde Reply

    Hello, this is great! I wish you had this released yesterday ;) Cant wait for it!!

  45. Salamander Reply

    Awesome! Just can’t wait to have it ;)
    Have you tested it on a Nexus 4?

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      No, currently the Android Transporter does not run on the Nexus 4. Maybe in future…

      • PF Reply

        is it possible to stream from the nexus 4 to the transporter on the raspberry pi though ?

        • Daniel Himmelein Reply

          No, currently the Android Transporter does not run on the Nexus 4. Maybe in future…

  46. Chris Reply

    This is beautiful! I have a raspberry pi and a Samsung Galaxy S2. WIll I ever get to play with this on my phone?

    • Daniel Himmelein Reply

      Sorry, but I don’t think so.

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