Getting video of an iPhone app

Nibbie
Posts: 3
Joined: 2009.05
Post: #1
I'm getting close to done with my first app, and I'm wondering how to go about showing it off. I'll probably just use screenshots of the simulator of stills, but I'd like a video of it in action. The problem is, I'm using the accelerometer, so I can't just run it on the simulator and capture that, so I'm wondering if anyone has any ideas.

As an aside, how do y'all go about demonstrating your apps? I'm mostly used to flash programming, which is obviously somewhat easier to demonstrate on a website, so any ideas would be appreciated.
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Member
Posts: 48
Joined: 2009.05
Post: #2
Hi.

First off, well done on almost finishing your app! I'm just in the 'design / concept' stages of mine - never having done it for either the iPhone or Obj-C programming before - so I'm a BIT daunted.

Anyway, there are two ways you could go about this. Use the TV Out features of the device somehow with the appropriate dock / cable and record the signal, or the easier way would be to run the app in the simulator and use a screen capturing application to 'record' the screen.

However, then editing this move to strip away the rest of the desktop might be more difficult UNLESS you first minimized everything first, put the simulator in the center of the screen and zoomed in so that was the only thing on the screen, and set the desktop color / background image to a black .jpg.

That way you get a video of just the simulator running.

Of course if you're app needs motion control, then you're going to have to use a regular video camera and record you 'playing it'... as seen on AppVee.com and youtube iPhone game reviews.

Just my thoughts.

Good luck.

Elphaba
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Member
Posts: 161
Joined: 2005.07
Post: #3
I have no idea how it's normally done (haven't released an app yet...), but you can probably do something like this:

1. add a quick hack that saves the accelerometer values to a file. If you use the random number generator, you'll need to save the seed to the file too. The same goes for if you use the touch screen -- save the touches to the file.
2. run the game on the device to generate the file.
3. now hack in something that reads the accelerometer values, touches, and the seed from the file, instead of using the actual accelerometer and touch screen inputs.
4. run the game on the simulator and record the video!

(I'm assuming you already checked to make sure there isn't a way to record video from the device via Xcode or something.)
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Member
Posts: 45
Joined: 2008.04
Post: #4
Or use an iphone to send accelerometer data back into the simulator so you can then video the simulator, see: http://code.google.com/p/accelerometer-s.../wiki/Home
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Member
Posts: 61
Joined: 2009.01
Post: #5
Anyone know if there is a way to do this yet? For some reason, the game is totally screwed (sprites are totally messed up, it runs at about 1 FPS, etc.). I have no idea why, but the end result is of course that I can't do this with the simulator. I tried taking screenshots of my app as it goes, but this naturally takes way way too long, so it brings it down to like 1 fps anyway.
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Nibbie
Posts: 1
Joined: 2009.10
Post: #6
> the easier way would be to run the app in the simulator and
> use a screen capturing application to 'record' the screen.

We thought about using the TvOut functionality to capture what was on the screen as we used the app, but figured it would take took long to grab, edit and convert the video. There was also an attempt with a light-controlled light box with a HD camera. It didn't turn out as nice as we had hoped.

I saw a demo from the guys that made flightcontrol (firemint). They said use a camera with a bright window background - didn't try that (yet).

We ended up using iShowU from shinywhitebox- I think it was $20US. It allows you to record a window or section of your screen on the Mac. Since our app is interactive, I used iphonefinger (free) to add some realism. It's simply a replacement for your cursor that is a full sized hand/finger.

In hindsight, several people have stated that they thought our app was actually a video and not interactive at all !?! It's a "prank app" where once you touch a normal looking iphone icon, it reacts to movement thru the accelerometer and touch/flinging. It uses cocos2d (open source) for the physics engine and we weren't allowed to ship it with any canned screenshots of the icons/springboard. Users have to make a screenshot themselves as you can't simulate failure on the iphone. But that's another story/post...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DwD-X7_74ew

Hope that helps,
Steve
Co-founder coreinfotech
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Member
Posts: 40
Joined: 2009.05
Post: #7
For both my videos I've just used a normal camera and shot the iphone in action - Sudoku Grab and Aliens Invade.

Sudoku Grab I built a contraption to hold the camera above the iphone which let me move the phone around and kept the camera pointing at it at a fixed distance - I used some cardboard and sticky tape for this.

For Aliens Invade I used some books to hold the camera tripod which let me have the phone on the table and the camera a fixed distance away. Used a towel over my head to keep out the light.

For the accelerometer you'll probably want to make something to hold the camera and phone together so you can move them both around quite easily.

Good luck!


Vinnie Wrote:I'm getting close to done with my first app, and I'm wondering how to go about showing it off. I'll probably just use screenshots of the simulator of stills, but I'd like a video of it in action. The problem is, I'm using the accelerometer, so I can't just run it on the simulator and capture that, so I'm wondering if anyone has any ideas.

As an aside, how do y'all go about demonstrating your apps? I'm mostly used to flash programming, which is obviously somewhat easier to demonstrate on a website, so any ideas would be appreciated.
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Member
Posts: 177
Joined: 2002.08
Post: #8
There's another reason not to use TV out for app videos- it uses a framebuffer somewhat larger than the native screen size, so it will produce a lower framerate than normal.
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Member
Posts: 86
Joined: 2008.04
Post: #9
There was some dev app posted that let you use your iphone to control the simulator...

haven't used it:
http://www.vimov.com/isimulate/

you might also be interested in:
http://www.iphonearch.com/topic/6/iphone...simulator/
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DoG
Moderator
Posts: 869
Joined: 2003.01
Post: #10
Incidentally, I just coded up something that works for transmitting (multi)touches to the simulator from the phone, and getting an image back, so you don't have to fiddle on a black screen. However, it's still a bit rough, but I expect to be able to post a working version within the week Smile
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Apprentice
Posts: 6
Joined: 2009.05
Post: #11
iSimulate + Jing
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