Imagine being able to play media from any computer or device on your TV and have it controlled from your smartphone or digital camera. This means that you could walk in the house after an event and press a button to wirelessly play a slideshow of the photos you just took on your smartphone, digital camera or camcorder.
Perhaps you want to watch a movie you just downloaded from the internet and saved on your network attached storage (NAS) drive. Again, you pick up your phone choose the NAS drive as the source, select the movie and this time tell it to play on the network media player that is attached to your bedroom TV.
That's the idea behind Samsung's AllShare (also referred to as Samsung Link). AllShare is an added feature of networked Samsung TVs (Smart TVs), Blu-ray Disc players, Home Theaters, Galaxy S mobile phones, Galaxy Tab Tablets, laptops and some models of their digital cameras and camcorders.
AllShare is DLNA on steroids. That is to say, that all of these devices are DLNA certified in at least one category, many in multiple categories. On top of the DLNA certification, Samsung products have additional capabilities built into AllShare that enhance the media sharing experience.
One additional function of AllShare is that you can set up your Samsung TV to notify you when a call is coming in to your Galaxy S phone. It can also notify you of voicemail and other messages.
Exploring the capabilities of the different Samsung AllShare-equipped devices is a lesson in DLNA certification and interoperability. Let's look at the benefits each product derives from its different DLNA certifications and how DLNA makes the AllShare products work together.
Samsung Smart TVs
Samsung is committed to including AllShare in their Smart TVs. Dan Schinasi from Samsung explains, "As the largest screen in the home, Samsung feels that the TV is well-suited for sharing content, and we want to make the sharing experience as easy as possible."
Samsung's Smart TVs play streaming media and will notify you when an AllShare media server is detected.
Digital Media Player (DMP) Certified--Smart TVs can play media from computers, NAS drives and other media servers in your home network. Access the media by going to the TV's "Media Share" or "AllShare" menu, then select the media server and photo, movie, or music file you want to play.
Digital Media Renderer (DMR) Certified--The TV shows up in the menu of a Digital Media Controller as a device that will play media you send to it. In the AllShare ecosystem, the TV can be controlled by the Galaxy S phones or Galaxy Tab, or by a camera or camcorder.
To play the media on the Samsung TV, select a video or music file, or playlist and then pick the Smart TV as the renderer. The music or movie will automatically start playing on the TV once it has loaded. To play a slideshow on the TV, choose a number of photos and select the TV to show them.
Samsung Networked Blu-ray Disc Player
Digital Media Player (DMP) Certified--The Samsung networked Blu-ray Disc player can connect to all of your sources to play videos, photos or music.
A Samsung representative explained that the Blu-ray Disc players are not currently certified as Digital Media Renderers because they feel a renderer is a device that is commonly powered on most of the time, like a home theater receiver or a TV. Most people will only turn on a Blu-ray Disc player when they want to play a disc or use it to access other media. As the "other media" functionality gains popularity, Samsung may add the Digital Media Renderer certification.
Galaxy S Phones & Galaxy Tab
Samsung has released a line of "Galaxy S" Android Phones that are part of AllShare. The Samsung Captivate phone is their AT&T phone. The Samsung Fascinate works with Verizon. And the Epic 4G is Sprint's version. The Galaxy Tab is Samsung's tablet that also uses the Android operating system. Each of these Samsung Galaxy products comes loaded with the Samsung AllShare app.
Galaxy is the heart of AllShare! With its multiple DLNA certifications--the Mobile Digital Media Controller certification in particular--it can move media around from one device to the next.
The Galaxy S phones and Galaxy Tab can play media from computers and media servers directly on its screen. It can send its own photos, movies and music to the Samsung TV and other digital media renderers--network media players or other DLNA certified products--in your network. You can also wirelessly download and save other movies, music and photos on your phone so you can take them with you. And, you can upload your movies and pictures to a compatible NAS drive.
Mobile Digital Media Server (DMS) Certified--With a Galaxy S phone, you can shoot photos and videos, create voice recordings, or download music and save it all on your phone. The Digital Media Server certification ensures that the phone appears as a source (media server) in the menu of an AllShare TV, Blu-ray Disc player or laptop. From that menu, simply select the desired photo, video or recording from the list of media saved on your phone.
Mobile Digital Media Controller (DMC) Certified--The phone's AllShare app is an easy-to-use controller. In the AllShare phone app, choose "Play file from another server to another player via my phone." Then pick the source of the media. Choose where you want to play the media (DMR), and press play. The phone plays conductor--displaying your media lists then sending it to where you want it to be played.
Mobile Digital Media Player (DMP) Certified--The AllShare app lets you choose media that is saved on your computer or media servers, to play on your phone.
Mobile Digital Media Renderer (DMR) Certified--The phone is recognized as renderer on other digital media controller devices. That controller can send files for you to watch or listen to on the phone.
Mobile Digital Media Uploader and Downloader - When playing media from a media server in your network, there is a button in the AllShare app that lets you upload the file and save it to your Galaxy S. Now that file is available even if you leave the house. This is handy. By saving the photos or music, you can take it with you. It's also good for saving a movie if you want to finish watching it after you've left home.