DLNA Netflix and YouTube launch DIAL to compete with AirPlay

The "second screen" is the hottest one of the buzzwords in tech these days.  Many app developers are looking for ways to change the way you consume entertainment on your television and secondary device. Currently AirPlay; an Apple specific protocol, and DLNA are the main ways to use your mobile device, such as a tablet or smartphone, to interact with your television; but two new players want to change that.

As mobile devices, like smartphones and tablets, increasingly become a part of our everyday life, we are looking for new ways to use them to consume entertainment—whether it’s through the primary screen or the "second screen". Up until now, using your mobile device to interact with apps on your television (or Internet connected set-top boxes) usually involved connecting to Apple's AirPlay or televisions that supported DLNA.

The problem with Apple's solution, though, is that it is proprietary and only usable if you have Apple devices. DLNA on the other hand has never gained any real adoption and isn't as widely known.

Well, two competitors have decided that it is time to join forces to see if they can bust open this potentially very fertile area of technology. In an announcement today, Netflix and YouTube said that they are working together to develop a new protocol, known as DIAL, and it will be an open protocol that will allow mobile apps to control apps on televisions or set-top boxes.

DIAL stands for Discover and Launch and it will allow apps on a "Second screen"; such as your smartphone or tablet, to automatically bring up and communicate with supported apps on your first screen; typically your television. This will make is possible to launch the YouTube app on your smartphone, load up a video, and then click on a "Play on TV" button. This action will trigger the YouTube app on the television and automatically start playing the video.

The nice thing about making this an open protocol is that any developer will be able to make use of it in their apps. As well, it will make the job of linking mobile apps to television apps a lot easier for developers.

DIAL will be maintained by both Netflix and YouTube, but other partners are more than welcome to become a part of the project. Neither of the companies’ individual apps currently support DIAL, but are expected to in very short order.

You can more information on the new site for the project.

via Redmond Pie