How does playlists work?
Playlists are at the core of your Play Digital Signage content. Each playlist consists of one or more slides, and you can also put playlists in playlists to create different zones.
- Aspect ratio (AR) – is the ratio of the display’s width and height, typically displays are in 16:9 AR, with some monitors in 16:10. If you want to use display in portrait, you should also create a playlist in portrait aspect ratio 9:16. You can also enter custom aspect ratio if you have a screen (LED display for an example) in non-standard resolution. Our software is resolution agnostic, that means the playlist is scaled as much as possible without skewing the images, be that 720p, 1080p (fullHD) or 4K resolution.
- Layout – You can choose between several pre-made zone configurations. If the configuration you want is not available, see our tutorial on how to create custom zones.
- Maximum playlist duration [advanced] – Limits how long the playlist can be. This option is oriented towards content creators who sell specific time slots on their screens. The idea is that display owners can sell their customer a fixed time slot (say 60 second playlist) and share it to the customer, so they can design it themselves. This way the display owner only schedules the playlist and it is up to customer to design the playlist without the need of the display owner being involved in creating/uploading/managing the content.
- Interaction delay [advanced] – This option may be useful on touch displays or kiosk with user input. Imagine a scenario where you have a user workflow with several options and on one slide you ask users to fill out a web form (f.x Welcome->Info->Web form). You don’t know how long it takes users to fill out the form, but you also want the display to reset the flow to the beginning if user abandons the form. This option will delay next slide playback by the specified amount of seconds, so that the player will not start playing next slide if the user is in the middle of filling out a web form or interacting with a slide.
- Randomize slides [advanced] – Plays slides in random order. Please note that selecting this option will override any individual slide rules such as ‘After this slide play slide 2’. If you plan to use schedules with several playlists to be played in a sequence, a playlist is considered “done” when the last slide is played, therefore once the last last slide is randomized, the player will continue with the next playlist in the sequence.
How do I delete a playlist?
When you are in the playlists page, click on the settings button and down below in the dialog you’ll find the button to delete the playlist.
It is only possible to delete a playlist if it is not assigned to any group. If you get an error message while trying to delete a playlist, go to the groups page and make sure that no groups (or schedules within a group) reference the playlist. You can either delete the groups/schedules or assign a different playlist to the group.
You can move the slide to slide stash, this will create a copy of the slide. Then navigate to your destination playlist and drag the slide from stash to the playlist. This clip demonstrates on how to use it:
Check out the multi create functionality in Slide support page.
Unfortunately it is not possible to change aspect ratio of a playlist once it’s been created. The reason is that the content would get skewed if it was possible – imagine a playlist with 1:1 aspect ratio (a square) and now if you’d change the ratio to 2:1 (a rectangle), it would skew width twice as much.
If you have created a playlist in wrong aspect ratio, you have to create new playlist, but you can speed up the process of creating the slides by copy-pasting elements in the slide. You can drag the slides to slide stash, then drag the stashed slide into a new playlist with correct aspect ratio. Beware that the slide will have the old aspect ratio, but now you can select all elements on the slide (shift-clicking or click-dragging), copying them (CTRL + C) and pasting to the slide with correct aspect ratio. When you’ve copied all elements, you can remove the slide you dragged from stash (the slide with incorrect AR).
In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to rotate your Play Digital Signage slides by 90 degrees clock-wise (portrait mode). You’ll find it useful if you want to rotate your display vertically.
Setting up your screen in vertical mode involves 2 steps:
- Creating content for portrait mode
- Configuring player for portrait mode
Portrait mode content creation
Since display will be rotated 90 degrees, the aspect ratios are also flipped. Instead of the usual 16:9 aspect ratio, create a playlist with 9:16 ratio. Most TV screens produced today are in 16:9/9:16 aspect ratio, however you can always input your own custom ratio under “Advanced” section in the “Create playlist” popup window.
Now that the content is in right proportions, we need to rotate the display signal 90 degrees as well. If you are using an operating system that supports changing display orientation (Windows, Mac, Linux, ChromeOS and some Android devices), we strongly recommend configuring the screen rotation in the operating system settings rather than in our application settings as this is more efficient to render for the device.
Not all Android devices support rotating display signal, but the option is usually under Settings->Display menu. After rotating the screen, the playlist may not fill up the entire screen, because width and height are now reversed. To fix that, go to our app options, then select “Screen edges” and adjust the red borders to match the screen.
If you can’t find the setting, please refer to FireOS guide below.
FireOS devices (Fire TV) don’t have an option to rotate the signal, so we have developed a workaround for it. This is not ideal as it requires more processing, however works as a band-aid solution. On the web portal “Screens” page click the “Settings” (gear) button on the screen you want to rotate to portrait mode. You’ll find the option to select between “Clockwise” and “Counter-Clockwise” in the display orientation section:
Tip: These settings can also managed from the player by pressing the “menu” button on FireTV remote to bring up options menu.
Setting display edges
If you started the player application before you rotated the screen to portrait in the operating system settings, the content will be rotated, but not full screen. This is because the player has the edge properties from when it was in landscape mode. This is easy to fix though:
Open up options in the player and navigate to ‘Screen edges’. Now move the red lines to cover entire visible area.
Background Music can add another layer to your content. It doesn’t have to be only about visuals, why not capture more senses and set the scene of your playlist with background music. Music is powerful, it can lift our mood offer entertainment and improve blood flow.
In Play Digital Signage a typical playlist contains a list of slides to be presented, but you can also add a list of songs that should be played. First upload some audio files to your library, then navigate to playlists page and click the tune icon on a playlist.
Now drag & drop the songs you want to be played in the background from left column to the list on the right. The tracks will be played in loop as long as the playlist is presented.
Also you can add audio files in your slides: Slide Background Music
What type of audio files are supported?
We recommend using .mp3, however .wav .ogg .m4a and .flac files are also supported, but converted to .mp3
Can I pause audio for some slides that have videos?
Yes, once you have added some background soundtracks, there is an additional option available in the slide settings. To find this setting open the slide for which you want to pause the music. Open slide settings (the page where you’d change slide duration) and click on the “Advanced” section.
Can I play background music only on one slide?
Yes, please read this article: Slide Background Music
We don’t have support for the radio streams in a plugin, but if the stream can be played in a browser (typically .m3u8 or .mp3 file or TuneIn radio stream – see below), then it is possible to integrate it with a website plugin. Now the stream would only play when that slide with the website plugin is shown, but we want it to play during the entire playlist. If you already have a zoned playlist, you can add the website plugin to the Master playlist (the one that has only 1 slide with “Play forever” duration). If you don’t have a zoned playlist, you can create a Master playlist with 1 slide (set the duration to “Play forever”), then add the website plugin on it and then add a sub-playlist (the original playlist that you want to play). The sub-playlists will be displayed on top of the website plugin containing the Internet radio stream, but you can also move the plugin off the canvas completely. Check out our zoning guide for more info if terms like “Master playlist” and “Sub-playlist” are new to you.
TuneIn radio is a web service that catalogs various radios and makes them stream-able via their website. Chances are, you will find a suitable stream in their listings.
- Find a radio channel that you want to embed from their website and copy the URL. In this example we’ll be using triple j radio: https://tunein.com/radio/triple-j-1057-s25508/
- Paste the URL into embed code generator https://tunein.com/broadcasters/promote/
- The generator outputs HTML code for website embedding, but we only need the URL. Copy the URL inside the src parameter of the HTML code, the URL should look like this now: https://tunein.com/embed/player/s25508/
- Append ?autoplay=true to the URL so it would start playing automatically. The URL looks like this now: https://tunein.com/embed/player/s25508/?autoplay=true
- You can use this URL in the website plugin now!