First and foremost, I want to give everyone who has backed this project a most sincere, "Thank you". You've validated this idea for me and it gives me motivation to bring Cool Mic to the next level.
We've reached our goal, yes - and with only hours to go, things are definitely looking up. But there are more features that will need to be built into Cool Mic to make it as easy as possible for musicians to livestream, and music fans to listen.
Probably the biggest stretch goal we want to reach is building a listening client directly into Cool Mic. This way, when a livestreamer sends a link, people won't have to open up a web browser to listen - the link will open directly in Cool Mic and they'll be able to listen from there. This will streamline everything so that the entire Cool Mic experience, whether you're a broadcaster or a listener, won't require any external programs.
If you haven't made a pledge yet, please consider doing so now. We want to be able to accomplish as much as possible with this campaign, and with your help we'll be able to make Cool Mic even cooler! :)
- UPDATE #9: Funded!
- UPDATE #8: 11 Days left!
- UPDATE#7: (Backers-only update)
- UPDATE #6: Thank you for your pledge
- UPDATE #5: Acoustic Livestream from Sally Haggard (AUDIO)
- UPDATE #4: If we're funded, we're going for an Apple iOS version
- UPDATE #3: Notes on my motivation for creating Cool Mic (AUDIO)
- UPDATE #2: Cool Mic: A History
- UPDATE #1: Officially launched!
WHAT IS COOL MIC?
Cool Mic allows you to livestream audio from your Android mobile. Our motivation stems from the desire to give musicians a platform in which to perform and promote themselves.
Cool Mic is an open source project.
We use the patent-free audio codec Ogg Vorbis to stream audio. Support for the next generation Opus codec will become available with successful funding, raising the bar for providing high quality realtime audio over low bandwidth links.
Cool Mic has a simple and functional interface. Set your info (broadcaster name and title of livestream), audio quality and connection to an Icecast server. The home screen lets you start and stop your livestream as well as share your stream URL via text messages, social networks, e-mail and more.
How do I use it?
Here you can set "Title" and "Artist" info which is displayed to listeners.
This is where you set up your Icecast server connection. Some unique features include:
- Allowing you to enter a custom server port number (IP:PORT)
- Allowing you to specify a custom Icecast source username
Fine tune your audio settings here. This includes:
- Sample rate
- Mono or stereo input
- Ogg Vorbis quality level
NOTE: With successful funding we will be able to offer the open source, patent-free audio codec Opus. Opus will dramatically increase audio quality with Cool Mic. It will at the same time reduce bandwidth requirements. This is especially beneficial for those on slower data connections. Using Opus will also open the door to new realtime listener interaction possibilities.
Sharing your livestream
Simply tap the large microphone icon on the Home screen to copy your unique stream URL. Then long-tap (paste) it into anything - a group text message, a Facebook or Twitter post, a mass e-mail, or anywhere else.
Starting your livestream
Simply tap the "Start Broadcast" button on the Home screen to go live. It will start flashing to let you know you're on. So go ahead and start playing your guitar, talk about what's on your mind, conduct an interview...
When you want to end your livestream, tap the "Stop Broadcast" button on the same screen.
Listening to a broadcast
Listeners tap the link you share with them to listen via their browser (Firefox and Chrome both support HTML5 Ogg Vorbis audio streams natively). Dedicated apps such as VLC, Audacious, Winamp, Windows Media Player + iTunes (with plugin) can be used to listen to streams directly as well.
Stretch goals for this campaign will allow us to build a listening client into Cool Mic, allowing you to listen to broadcasts with the same app.
I need help to get Cool Mic in the Play Store!
Over the past two years I have saved money to pay a development team to come up with the initial versions of Cool Mic.
I'm turning to you, Kickstarters, to help me make the final improvements and publish Cool Mic in Google Play.
These improvements are:
1) Optimize the existing code base and publish on Github.
With real world Icecast server development experience, a new core development team is excited to port existing Cool Mic functionality to using libshout - an open source software library specifically designed for communicating with Icecast servers. This will greatly enhance existing functionality. It will also provide a framework for easily adding new features. Other code optimizations include reducing the amount of jumps between Java -> C code, greatly increasing efficiency, thus battery life. I am super excited to work with them and to share this code with the community.
2) Add support for Opus audio encoding.
Opus is the next generation streaming audio codec and will drastically improve quality and minimize bandwidth usage for our users. Providing Opus encoding support will make Cool Mic even more accessible to broadcasters and listeners.
3) Add SSL encrypted streaming support.
Adding SSL support will give broadcasters and listeners the level of security they deserve.
4) Add an active listener count to Home screen while broadcasting.
It's important to know how many people are tuned in during your broadcast. An active listener count will be displayed whenever you broadcast.
5) Add a volume level (VU) meter while broadcasting.
This gives visual feedback to broadcasters about the audio they are broadcasting. This will help avoid situations where broadcast audio sounds very faint or far away (from being too far away or levels turned down too far) or possibly too loud/distorted (from being too close or levels turned up too far).
Stretch goals: Additional pledges above our goal will help:
- Use Cool Mic to listen to livestreams as well
- Listener chat, various 'appreciation-action' integration
- Record + download livestreams directly from Cool Mic
- Other Cool Mic focused development and support costs
Beyond this campaign:
Apple iOS Port: With successful funding to complete the original Android version of Cool Mic, we will launch a new Kickstarter to fund creation of an official iOS port.
Thank you for your pledge.
Together we can make Cool Mic a reality. Thank you so much for choosing to be a part of the Cool Mic project!
Risks and challenges
Our philosophy is to under-sell and over-deliver on small funding goals such as this first one. We've done our best to make sure successful funding fulfills all stated goals and rewards to our funders. Of course with any software development project, it is possible that a development cycle may encounter roadblocks that require extra time. To avoid this as much as possible we have worked closely together to ensure all aspects of development are clearly defined and understood. Being an open source project, we are also nurturing and growing a developer community that is as passionate about what Cool Mic is as we are (Join us on IRC - Freenode / #coolmic ).Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)