The group's goal is to define an API that allows web applications to use secondary screens to display Web content. Phones, tablets, laptops and other devices support ways to attach additional display screens. Common methods include attaching through video ports or HDMI, or wirelessly through Miracast, WiDi, or AirPlay. Screens can also be attached over a network. For many of these techniques the operating system hides how the screen is attached and provides ways for applications to use the screens. Native apps on an operating system can easily use these additional screens without having to know how they are attached to the device. The goal of this CG is to define simple APIs to request displaying an HTML page on the second screen and some means for the launching page on the first screen to communicate with and control the second page, wherever it is rendered. That API should hide the details of the underlying connection technologies and use familiar, common web technologies for messaging.
The charter for this CG can be found at: https://github.com/webscreens/presentation-api/wiki/Second-Screen-Community-Group-Charter
The Second Screen Presentation Working Group was chartered a couple of months ago at W3C, thanks to the support of W3C members, especially those participating in this Community Group. As described in its charter, the mission of the Working Group is to take the Presentation API specification along the Recommendation track up to its final publication as a Web standard.
To ease the transition and provide a concrete starting point for the Working Group, the Community Group published an updated version of the Presentation API as final report yesterday. This report includes the outcomes of recent discussions within the Community Group while the Working Group was being created.
The Community Group will now cease its work on the Presentation API specification and let the Working Group take it from there. Please note that the Community Group remains active though! It will typically explore potential future work items that are not yet in scope of the Working Group.
The <video> sharing demo that investigates using the HTMLMediaElement interface to control a video presented on a second screen.
The HTML Slidy remote demo that takes the URL of a slide show made with HTML Slidy and presents it on a second screen, turning the first screen into a slide show remote.
The Fraunhofer FOKUS’ Competence Center Future Applications and Media (FAME) has also been working on a number of implementations of the Presentation API as part of FAMIUM, an end-to-end prototype implementation for early technology evaluation and interoperability testing introduced by FAME.
Different types of second screens are supported depending on the demo considered, using custom version of Web browsers, browser extensions, etc. All demos fallback to opening the content in a separate browser window.
We will try to keep these demos aligned with the evolutions of the Presentation API, and complete the Presentation API demos page with additional ones over time. Feel free to share demos or suggestions on the group’s mailing-list!
Using the binaries from the page, or building your own version of Chromium with the provided patches applied, you can get an impression of what using Presentation API might look like and the sort of new usage scenarios that it enables. It’s also possible to experiment and build your own examples.