Ooyala Backlot Release Notes

Podcast Syndication Enhancements (2018-03-20)

To support updated Apple requirements for podcast feeds, the following fields were added to the PUBLISH > External Publication subtab for configuring Podcast syndication:
  • Language - language used in the audio file
  • Explicit - specifies whether the podcast contains explicit language (Yes) or not (No)
Apple requires selections for both of these fields. In addition, the Album Art description was updated to reflect the latest Apple requirements for image resolution sizes. For details, see Syndication with Podcast.

Mid-stream Checking of Geographic Restrictions (2018-02-28)

You can now configure mid-stream checks for geographic restrictions in publishing rules. Previously, geographic restrictions were checked only once, at the beginning of a stream. Now you can configure checks to occur at regular intervals during playback. This feature provides an additional level of security for blocking users from using VPNs to get around geographic restrictions on secured content. If a user moves outside of the specified geographic restriction, this is detected at the next interval and playback is stopped. This functionality requires the Ooyala Player Token (OPT).
  • For the Backlot UI, see Creating Publishing Rules for details.
  • For the Backlot API, you can enable mid-stream checking when you create a publication rule using the POST command (see Creating Publishing Rules), or when you update an existing publication rule using the PATCH command (see Editing Publishing Rules). Provide the following settings in the request body:
    {
       'secure_playback_token' : {
         'enabled' : true,
         'enable_mid_stream_check': true,
         'mid_stream_check_interval' : int_number // The number of seconds when the re-geocheck will be happening, the minimum is 60
        }
    }

Managing VR 360 Content in the Backlot UI (2018-01-11)

You can now upload VR 360 videos in the Backlot UI. For an overview, see VR 360 Videos.
  • Uploading a VR 360 video is similar to uploading a flat video. The main difference is that you identify the video as VR 360 and then specify whether the content is monoscopic or stereoscopic. See Uploading a Video for details.
  • You can add a VR 360 video as a remote asset. See Adding a Remote Asset in Backlot for details.
  • You can replace a video asset with a VR 360 video. See Replacing Content for details.

Canceling Asset Replacement (2018-01-07)

In the Backlot API, you can now cancel an asset replacement request as long as the replacement request has not yet completed (the status of the replacement asset is not yet live). For instructions, see Replacing an Asset).

Support for VR 360 Uploads via the Backlot API (2017-12-20)

This release introduces support for uploading VR 360 videos into Backlot using the Backlot API. Uploading a VR 360 video is similar to ingesting a flat video, with the addition of metadata that is unique to VR 360. For instructions, see Uploading VR 360 Content. For an overview, see VR 360 Videos.

Updated Ingestion Dashboard (2017-10)

Unless you log in as a user with Upload Only privileges, if you go to the Ingestion Dashboard (see Viewing the Ingest Log in Backlot), you will now be able to see all ingest jobs submitted for your Backlot account (including those submitted by other users). If you log in as a user with Upload Only privileges, you will still see only the ingest jobs submitted by your user account.

US ZIP Code Restrictions in Publishing Rules (2017-09-06)

You can now specify US ZIP codes for geographic restrictions on the PUBLISH > Syndication Controls subtab. You can use zip codes to selectively allow or prevent access to specific content based on the device's current location. This functionality requires that the Ooyala Player Token (OPT) be enabled for your account, and that the zip code be sent inside the OPT. See Publishing Rules for details.

Backlot Feature Deprecations (2017-06-04)

The following Backlot functionality has been deprecated and is scheduled to be disabled: For details and alternatives, see the OVP Release Notes.

New Player V4 Embed Codes (2017-05-31)

This Backlot release adds standard and advanced embed codes. In the Backlot UI, for Player V4 embed codes (MANAGE > Embed), you can now choose between two types (see Configuring Player Embed Settings in Backlot):
Embed Code Description
Standard

(new in this release)

Full Name: V4 HTML5 Standard Player Embed Code (recommended)

Automatically includes the following plugins:

  • Core Player (core.min.js)
  • Player Skin (html5-skin.min.js, html5-skin.min.css) Note that skin.json is NOT included automatically, which allows reading Player UI settings from Backlot.
  • Bitmovin plugin for HLS and DASH (bit_wrapper.min.js)
  • Main video plugin for HLS and MP4 (main_html5.min.js)
  • Ad Plugins (Pulse, Google IMA, Freewheel and VAST)
  • Discovery Plugin (discovery_api.min.js)
If you select this embed code, you no longer add these plugins to the web page (they need to be removed if currently inline, as duplicate plugin embeds can cause unexpected results). For all other plugins (for example, analytics plugins), you need to add the plugin explicitly on the web page (see Embedding Player V4 on a Web Page for details).
Advanced Full Name: V4 HTML5 Player Embed Code (Advanced)
Includes no plug-ins. You must specify every plugin you use on the web page.
Note: This is the same as the Player V4 embed code available before 2017-05-31.
For details about plugins, see Player V4 Plugins.

New Ingestion Dashboard (2017-05-10)

This Backlot release adds an Ingestion Feed Activity tab in the Backlot UI that displays a read-only log of files submitted for ingestion to Backlot via the Ooyala Ingestion Service (OIS). This dashboard displays the name and type of the submitted file, its processing status, and other related information. You can filter the view to narrow search results. To see this tab, you must log into Backlot as a user with upload only access. For details, see Viewing the Ingest Log in Backlot.

Expanded Support for Player V4 (2017-05-02)

This Backlot release expands Player V4 support for creating and customizing Ooyala players.
  • Player version support. In this release, you can now explicitly specify the Ooyala player version (V4 or V3) when you create (Player Selection tab) or configure (PUBLISH > Player Branding > Player). The selected player version determines which options are available to configure in Backlot. For example, the Release Version (on the Player subtab) is displayed only if the currently selected player version is V4. Similarly, the Info checkbox is displayed on the End Screen subtab only if the currently selected player version is V3.
    Note: New Backlot accounts do not provide access to create Player V3. If you need Player V3 access, contact Ooyala Tech Support.

    Existing players have automatically been assigned to Player V3. If you want to convert a player to V4, you simply change its player version to V4 (PUBLISH > Player Branding > Player). Backlot prompts you to confirm before proceeding.

    Note: If you change the player version, any existing settings that are not supported in the target version will be lost.
  • Release version support. For Player V4 players, you can choose which version of the Ooyala-hosted software to use:
    • Production - Ooyala-hosted production path (default)
    • Latest - Ooyala-hosted production/latest path
    See "Ooyala Resource Paths" in Ooyala-hosted Player V4 Resources for details.
  • Player V4 Embed Code. For Player V4 players, you can now select a Player V4 embed code on the MANAGE > Embed subtab. You first need to change the player version to Player V4. See Configuring Player Embed Settings in Backlot and Basic Embedding Information.
  • Order of precedence for Player settings. Among the many player configuration options (Backlot, skin, CSS, page-level parameters, inline overrides), which setting prevails when they overlap? See Order of Precedence in Player V4 Settings.
  • Deprecation of Channels and Channel Sets. Channels and Channel Sets (Deprecated) are labeled as deprecated in the Backlot UI. For Player V3 players, channels and channel sets will continue to work as before. However, Player V4 does not support them, and therefore they are hidden in the Backlot UI.

Flash-Free Backlot (2016-12-15)

Backlot is completely Flash-free. This includes the Login page and other areas of the Backlot UI. If a player is Player V3, player previews will still use Flash first (failover to HTML5). However, Flash will need to be enabled on the browser if an HTML5-compatible stream is not available for playback.

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