Chromecast, Enough is Enough

@bptworld Q was empty. Speech on the device page works fine. I don't see anything in the log at the time we came inside and closed the garage door.

What about adding Refresh to the Chromecast Helper? Would that help or not?

I'm confused....why do you think the announcement should have played? Is it a problem with whatever is broadcasting the announcement vs the Chromecast device? I would recommend using some other means to track if the announcement should have played. Speaking the announcement also to one of @bptworld's "What Did I Say" devices would be very useful. Because if the queue wasn't full and you could immediately make broadcasts from within the edit device page, it sounds more like the automation to do the announcement didn't work for some reason.

It doesn't appear that refresh is actually doing anything. There is nothing showing in the logs when the function is performed. But you would have to ask @mike.maxwell. The Hubitat native drivers are not public so there's no way for us to know what function the refresh command performs on the Chromecast Audio device. The initialize command is what connects to the device. You can see that in the logs.

Because it has been playing for a long time now but lately chromecast has been dropping speech announcements more and more and I haven't changed it.

I looked at it and it is just a driver and not sure how to use it. What we need is for someone in the staff to tell us if the chromecast app is being worked on or not.

I was saying that that driver is another output for TTS so you could independently confirm that the announcement should have played. You don't seem to want to try an alternative method of TTS through your Google devices. I would recommend that you do. I have never missed a TTS announcement. The chromecast integration needs a lot of work.

@Ryan780 I am more than willing to use something else. So I am back to not understanding how to use the driver. I hate the chromecast app and need to have something reliable.

As I have said a couple times now, that driver was not meant to be a replacement for Chromecast. It was meant to give you another TTS output that is NOT a speaker so you can confirm that the message should have played. It outputs to a dashboard tile. I use it as backup in case I have audio alerts muted (if I'm on the phone for example). But it's just a way to see if the message should have played that is independent of anything google related.

As far as alternatives, the most constructed and complete one currently is assistant relay. But that only allows you to use the broadcast feature. You can't play to individual speakers and it starts every announcement with "Broadcast from" + your username.

There is the cast-web-api. This allows you to use the broadcast feature or to "cast" a tts to individual speakers or speaker groups. It uses the native HE Amazon Poly to generate the TTS and then "casts" that mp3 to the speaker. So you get the same tone that you do at the beginning of the Chromecast beta announcements. However, this is a little patchy at the moment. I am working with Tobias, the young German guy who developed the API for ST, on a proper how-to and then a proper port to HE. But the server side is identical to what you do for ST and I can PM you the driver code for the devices and the app code for the controller app instead of using the ST ones if you want to try that. Info on that one can be found here.

Both of these require you to run a small node server. Most use a Raspberry Pi but if you have a NAS that supports docker you can do that too. It just has to be running 24/7 in order to catch the tts requests.

There's a great doc by @ogiewon that couldn't be more helpful for Assistant Relay and if you need any help setting up cast web, I can PM you the files you need and give you any "gotchas" until the updated Docs are released.

@Ryan780 Ok, I get the use for the driver. It sends info to a tile so you can see what was said.

As far as the other ways you mentioned I think they are a little beyond what I want to dive into.

So I was looking at Follow Me but it uses the chromecast app also from what I am seeing.

So I don't think I am getting anywhere here. AND I just got blasted with at least 30 half started messages that were stuck in the Que.

How many TTS announcements are you doing a day? I play maybe 30 in a week, if that.

Do your GH devices have a static IP? I have mine setup to announce when specific contacts are open multiple times a day with the built in notification app and it seems to work without issues. All my GH devices have static IP's on my LAN though, I purposely did this to make sure there was not any issues with HE finding the device if my AP or firewall is restarted.

Not many, 4 or 5, depending on if something is opened/closed or motion tripped. My biggest gripe is if the NOAA doesn't talk, that could be bad.

I have them setup as a DHCP reservation. I haven't seen this change yet. I haven't checked out the notification app. I will look. thanks

Now I have another question. I heard that mini's will connect to a bluetooth receiver. Is there a way to get speech sent to a bluetooth receiver?

No, they can connect to a Bluetooth speaker for output, not for input. They can only receive through the cast protocol.

Dang, that is too bad. After I thought about it makes sense though. Outputting music to a better speaker. thanks

I do about 30 announcements a day. lol!

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Really? yikes. That would drive me insane.

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Very active household.

Is there a guide for chrome-web-api?

There's good instructions on the cast-web-api website. You just can't use the app or drivers listed on there. I can PM you the ones you'll want to use. Just send me a message.

Turns out the Chromecast Audio devices that Google used to sell, but now are obsolete, work very well and without fail.
So if anyone has any of those devices and want to sell them then let me know. I would need the power cord and usb converter as well if you have them. Thanks

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