Live Streaming with Larix Broadcaster (Mobile Phone)

This guide will walk you through streaming from a mobile device using the Larix Broadcaster Live Streaming App.

You will require the following to begin streaming from Larix Broadcaster:

  1. A mobile phone or tablet running either Android / iOS
  2. Larix Broadcaster Mobile App
  3. A Naoca streaming account

What is Larix Broadcaster?

Larix Broadcaster is a free app for iOS and Android that you can use to live stream from your mobile device on the Naoca platform. Larix Broadcaster uses the full power of mobile devices cameras, and basic features include:

  • Landscape/portrait orientation
  • Live rotation support
  • Front/back cameras hot switch
  • "Always vertical" and "Always horizontal" modes support
  • Content recording and screenshots saving support
  • Pause the stream: long tap on Start will pause the stream without disconnecting it
  • Video track will contain a black screen, audio track will contain silence
  • Audio-only capture mode: disable preview, stream from background, no video in output stream


Note that Naoca supports iOS 13.1.1+ and Android 9+ so please check your device versions and update the relevant software, if required.

Getting the Larix Broadcaster app

The Larix Broadcaster app can be downloaded and installed from the appropriate app store for your device, either the Google Play Store or Apple App store:

Get it on Google Play Download on the App Store

Setting up Larix Broadcaster the Easy Way

Click the settings cog in the top right of the page and select channels from the menu.

Select the mobile phone you want to connect

Click the show QR code button and scan the code with the normal camera app on your phone (not with Larix).

Then allow it to import settings and remove the existing settings from the phone.

 

Setting up Larix Broadcaster Manually

This method can also be used to add a second channel to the phone to allow you to stream to multiple destinations simultaneously, or select the one you want from a list. Once downloaded from your app store, open the app by tapping the Larix Broadcaster icon:

Larix Broadcaster logo

The app will ask you for permission for it to use your camera, microphone, and location. All of these should be allowed and once allowed you should be taken to the main screen of the app:

Larix Broadcaster - Application main screen

Once at the main screen, press the Cog / Settings icon to begin setting up your connection:

Larix Broadcaster - Application main screen

You will be presented with a number of options in the Settings screen. We are going to setup a new RTMP connection so press the Connections option:

Larix Broadcaster - Settings main screen

After you've pressed the Connections option you will be taken to a new screen where you can create a new connection by pressing the New connection option:

Larix Broadcaster - Connection settings screen

After you've pressed the New connection option you will be taken to a new screen where you can enter the details of your Naoca connection:

Larix Broadcaster - Outgoing connection details

There are several fields which must be filled out on this screen:

Name

This is a descriptive name of the connection and can be something you recognize, for example Mobile Streaming.

URL

This is how the phone knows where to send the stream. Your RTMP URL can be found on your streaming platform (streaming.naoca.com.au) by going to the settings cog > Channels. It will be found under the headding Ingest URL for the corresponding channel you want to stream to.

Mode

This should always be set to Audio+Video.

Target type

Should always be set to Default.

Larix Broadcaster - Connection settings screen

If successfully configured, you should see your new Outgoing connection in the list of configured connections.

Once ready to stream, press the Start button to start streaming

Larix Broadcaster - Application main screen

 

User Interface

 

1.     Here you can see the number of framers per second you are streaming at.  If this changes during the stream, it may indicate you are experiencing poor signal and streaming failures.

2.     Here you can see how long you have been streaming for

3.     Click here to switch between the front and back camera

4.     Here you can see the name of your connection.  You need to make sure that this is established for at least 1 minute before leaving the camera on the tripod to stream

5.     Here you can see what bitrate you are streaming at – this is set by our QR Code

6.     Click here to open app settings and access local recordings – you will need to search for these in Manage Save Files

7.     Click the Red button to Start and Stop Streaming

8.     Click the button here to mute the microphone on your mobile device

9.     Click here to take screen shots during the stream.

 

 

General Guidelines

 

o   The shorter the service the more reliable.  This is for several factors – the length of battery life on your phone, the likelihood of the phone overheating and shutting down etc.

 

o   Where you are moving from a Chapel / Church to a Graveside, don’t create one extended stream window. Instead set up two live streams.  Overall, this is more likely to be successful.

 

Mobile Phone Settings

To prevent the phone from locking during a stream:

iPhone:

Settings App > Display and Brightness > Autolock. Set this to "never".

Android:

Settings App > Display > Screen timeout. Set this to "never".

 

An incoming text message, call or other notification may interrupt the stream, so please turn on all 'do not disturb' settings as follows:

iPhone

Settings App > Do Not Disturb

Then ensure that

  • Do Not Disturb - turned on
  • Silence - Always
  • Allow Calls From - No One
  • Repeated Calls - turned off
  • Auto Reply - No One

 

Troubleshooting

Mobile Phone Streaming has been a great addition to our businesses and it has enabled us to provide streaming to our families at an affordable cost. 

That said, streaming is an intensive process for a phone to support and there are areas we can tighten up in our operation of the mobile system to make this service more reliable for families.

Minimum 4G connection

You will need at least 2 bars of 4G to stream a service. Make sure you check before you stream but please be mindful that signal can vary during a stream and this is the most common cause of an interruption.

 

When I press the start button, I get a message "Streamer not ready"
This can happen when Larix does not have permission to use the microphone and/or camera. Restarting the app will prompt Larix to request permissions again - these should be accepted.

 

When I press the start button, I get a message "Could not connect to server. Please check stream URL and network connection. Retrying in 3 seconds"

Solution 1

This can happen if your phone has multiple sim cards. Selecting 1 sim card will solve the issue.

On iPhone this can be done by going to Settings > cellular, and turning off one of your plans (this can be easily turned on again in the same place).
On Android this can be done by going to Settings > Connections > SIM card manager, and turning off one of your plans (this can be easily turned on again in the same place).

Solution 2

This may also happen if the phone is shared between funeral homes. Each phone is paired with a channel and if another funeral home has used the phone, it will remove the connection to your channel.

This can be solved by pairing the phone with the correct channel as described above in the "setting up the Larix Broadcaster app" section.

 

My phone is overheating and causing the stream to stop

Video streaming places a high demand on a phone but it should not be a problem if the phone is in good condition. It may overheat if there is a fault with the phone. It is more common on older devices but can happen on newer ones as well.

The first thing to try is restarting your phone. If that doesn't solve the problem it is likely that you will have to replace the phone but there are a few things you can try in order to get a bit more use out of it before it must be replaced:

  • Decrease the phone brightness
  • Uninstall all unused apps
  • Turn off air-drop, bluetooth, location services and wifi
  • Disable unnecessary background apps
  • Do not leave it on charge while streaming (as long as the batter will last long enough)
  • Keep it in the shade if possible
  • Remove phone case

 

I get a message "cannot connect to server"

This could have a number of causes including pressing record before the live streaming window has opened. Please stop recording and start it again to solve the problem.

 

Poor audio quality

Depending on your requirements and situation the built-in microphone may not be sufficient though we find that for most phones it works fine. If you need a better microphone, you can try the Rode VideoMic (https://www.rode.com/microphones/videomicmel)or a more advanced solution with a handheld or a lectern microphone.

Sometimes the audio issue may have a different cause including:

  • Damaged microphone
  • Damaged speakers
  • Wind interfering with the microphone
  • Hardware incompatible with a mono or stereo signal

First make sure that the phone's microphone is not damaged:
Try playing the stream through a different device with speakers that you know are working. This will also confirm whether it could be a problem with the speakers on the first device you were using to watch the stream.
If the microphone was damaged, you could buy an external mic which can plug into your phone.

If wind is the problem, buy an external mic which can plug into your phone - many of these come with wind socks which will reduce the interference of wind.

If none of the above solutions have resolved the issue, it may be from an incompatibility between the microphone signal and the signal expected by the speakers. Try changing the audio between mono and stereo by going to Settings > Audio > Channel count. Make sure to test this on multiple different devices to ensure that the stream can be watched on a range of computers, tablets and phones.

 

Phone shuts down during the stream

Check the iOS version is up to date by going to Settings App > General > Software Update. If there is an update available, please update and install it - this may take some time.

Check the phone's memory space by going to Settings App > General > iPhone Storage. Ideally you will have at least 5GB available. If not, please delete some files on your phone such as old recordings and unused apps.

Make sure the Larix app is up to date.

Poor audio quality

Depending on your requirements and situation the built-in microphone may not be sufficient though we find that for most phones it works fine. If you need a better microphone, you can try the Rode VideoMic (https://www.rode.com/microphones/videomicmel)or a more advanced solution with a handheld or a lectern microphone.

Sometimes the audio issue may have a different cause including:

  • Damaged microphone
  • Damaged speakers
  • Wind interfering with the microphone
  • Hardware incompatible with a mono or stereo signal

First make sure that the phone's microphone is not damaged:
Try playing the stream through a different device with speakers that you know are working. This will also confirm whether it could be a problem with the speakers on the first device you were using to watch the stream.
If the microphone was damaged, you could buy an external mic which can plug into your phone.

If wind is the problem, buy an external mic which can plug into your phone - many of these come with wind socks which will reduce the interference of wind.

If none of the above solutions have resolved the issue, it may be from an incompatibility between the microphone signal and the signal expected by the speakers. Try changing the audio between mono and stereo by going to Settings > Audio > Channel count. Make sure to test this on multiple different devices to ensure that the stream can be watched on a range of computers, tablets and phones.