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Moonlight on Android (jeffreystedfast.blogspot.com)
18 points by jstedfast on April 15, 2011 | hide | past | favorite | 22 comments

For those of you (like me) who didn't know about Moonlight, it's an opensource implementation of Silverlight http://www.mono-project.com/Moonlight

I wonder whether this would allow Netflix to more easily bring their streaming video service to Android...

Probably not. Moonlight doesn't have the DRM necessary (and won't - MS has no intention of releasing it on Linux) and Netflix doesn't use Silverlight/MS DRM on phones anyway (AFAIK).

From what I understand, on the iPhone/iPad Netflix uses the DRM built into the device. Since Android phones are built by several different manufacturers there is no uniformity in hardware DRM (and some phones don't have any at all). I imagine that it's easier to get content providers to agree to use hardware DRM than software DRM which further complicates the issue.

Well, if that's the case (Netflix taking advantage of the DRM built into the phones), then there's no reason Moonlight for Android can't take advantage of that, too.

Also, Microsoft has licensed their DRM for Linux on embedded devices in the past.

Yes, but since Netflix doesn't use Silverlight for the iPhone/iPad it's not like it's going to make a difference one way or another.

MS has licensed their DRM, but they will not license it for use with Moonlight. From my understanding, the licensing they have done has generally for hardware (the NXP chip in the Roku box, for example).

> MS has no intention of releasing it on Linux

More likely it is the content owners who have no intention of licensing the DRM for Linux.

Take a look at http://forums.silverlight.net/forums/t/94992.aspx.

After the original post, most of them are "yeah right on!", or +1 type posts, until about 1/6 of the way down when streamOG begins chiming in. His posts get increasingly in depth and informative on the issue as the thread continues.

I don't believe the Moonlight guys support DRM, so it's the same situation as Netflix on Linux.

Well, yes and no. From what I understand, Microsoft has been willing in the past to license their PlayReady DRM for use in embedded devices (which phones are). Will they be willing to license for Moonlight on Android? Who knows, but it's not a for-sure "no" yet. Of course, it's also not a "yes" either ;-)

AFAIK, we haven't even talked to them about it yet... this was kind of a last-minute hack for Mix11.

If you think Microsoft will voluntarily give a leg up to both Android and Mono, don't hold your breath.

I fail to see the point to this, Silverlight was deprecated by Microsoft in favor of HTML5, end of story.

Microsoft announced Silverlight 5 beta at Mix11, so not as dead as you'd like to think it seems.

Silverlight is still also very heavily used for intranet apps (which is where http://www.telerik.com/ makes their money on Silverlight controls)

Do you work for Telerik? Fan of their stuff.

Nope, I work for Novell on Moonlight. The Telerik guys do seem like pretty cool guys, though. I've emailed back and forth with one or two of them to try and debug Telerik controls running on Moonlight.

I didn't say dead, I said deprecated.

So apps on Windows Phone 7 are going to be built with HTML5?

Why not? IE9 mobile even has new default styling to make websites better match the WP aesthetic.

I tried doing it for the iPhone (html/javascript, showed in a WebView) -- the experience was horrible for an interface that featured only a couple of text inputs and 2 buttons. And on Android it was even worse.

Browsers for mobiles (WebKit mostly) are very buggy and even have extra restrictions that desktop browsers do not. I doubt they did a better job with the engine on WP7.

So apps for WP7 are going to be built with Moonlight?

HTML5: Polluting the mind of the commoner, making them believe it's the hottest shit since slice bread and that everything else is inferior.

Silverlight: Polluting the mind of the commoner, making them believe it's the hottest shit since slice bread and that everything else is inferior. Then realizing that this cross-microsoft-platform wonder is just a bad flash imitation, then deprecating it saying that HTML5 is better.

Yeah, HTML5 doesn't even cost money to develop!

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