Post Reply API for third-party developers
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Posted 9/11/14 , edited 9/20/16
Hello,

I'm a Crunchyroll subscriber and software developer. As such, I've been creating a dedicated Crunchyroll application for the Mac with the purpose of increasing desktop integration (desktop notifications of new episode releases, for instance) and polishing up user experience wherever possible. At the moment, the application is based around the website, similar to what other developers have done to create desktop clients for Netflix, Pandora, Google Music, etc with an embedded WebKit frame loading the site.

This method works, but it's non-optimal and will be rather kludgy without a fair chunk of new CSS/JS and work bridging the WebKit portion to the Objective-C/Cocoa portion. Even then, it'll always feel more like a website than a desktop application and it'll be stuck with the doglike, resource-heavy flash video player.

This is why I'd like to suggest the creation of an official Crunchyroll API for third-party developers. The API would provide a RESTful way of accessing show info/listings, queue for the signed in user, video streams, and more. Authentication could be provided with OAuth2.

To ensure compatibility with show licensing and to prevent abuse (piracy, etc), the API could have the following restrictions:

• Developers are required to register themselves and their applications with Crunchyroll
• After registration, applications must be approved. This approval may be revoked at any time at the discretion of Crunchyroll
• Applications built on the API require an active premium subscription (matches current app policies)
• Applications built on the API must not perform any form of stream saving, disk caching etc. Doing such will result in immediate revocation of approval, rendering the application non-functional


I know it's a stretch, but if it happened I think it would be immensely beneficial for CR. If this were come into existence, there'd be a sudden flourish of Crunchyroll apps for all kinds of platforms, dramatically extending CR's scope of service and providing a huge incentive for users to subscribe. Best of all, the third-party developers would be the ones responsible for developing, maintaining, and supporting all of these apps. All CR would have to do is maintain the API. From the company's perspective, it's practically free.

Anyway, that's my suggestion. If it were to come true, developers like myself would go above and beyond to provide high quality Crunchyroll experiences across numerous platforms. Please consider it. Thanks!
Der Zoodirektor
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Posted 9/11/14 , edited 9/11/14
Hey there,
the forums may be the wrong place to put this. Better try using the support form at the bottom of the page for a more direct access to the staff.

However, I know of similar requests by 3rd-party developers in the past, and as far as I know, the development team currently not (yet) have the resources to maintain a (semi-)public API for such purposes.
Otter Modder
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Posted 9/11/14
I am definitely on board for this, I would love for there to be an official API. For now though, you can look into using the API used by devices such as the PS3. For a good example of it you can look at the unofficial XBMC app.
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Posted 9/11/14 , edited 9/11/14

shinryou wrote:

Hey there,
the forums may be the wrong place to put this. Better try using the support form at the bottom of the page for a more direct access to the staff.

However, I know of similar requests by 3rd-party developers in the past, and as far as I know, the development team currently not (yet) have the resources to maintain a (semi-)public API for such purposes.


I considered using that form, but it seemed heavily support-oriented so I wasn't sure if it would be a good fit.



beardfist wrote:

I am definitely on board for this, I would love for there to be an official API. For now though, you can look into using the API used by devices such as the PS3. For a good example of it you can look at the unofficial XBMC app.


Yeah I took a look at that using the PS3 API and sifted through the XBMC/Plex plugin sources. They're relatively simple to use and I may just go with it, but the thought of CR dropping ban hammers for using a private API scares me a little. What's CR's policy on that?
Otter Modder
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Posted 9/11/14 , edited 9/11/14
I am not really sure what the policy is. Strictly speaking it is probably against the TOS, but my chrome extension uses lots of the same api calls the site does and even some decompiled flash code, but I haven't been banned for it. I would think that unless you were using it to rip the videos or something like that then you shouldn't be banned. There has only been one case (that I know of) of someone being banned for using my extension and that was more a misinterpretation of the requests being spam (there are a lot of them) and not the code that it uses.
The Wise Wizard
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Posted 9/11/14

iindigo wrote:

This method works, but it's non-optimal and will be rather kludgy without a fair chunk of new CSS/JS and work bridging the WebKit portion to the Objective-C/Cocoa portion. Even then, it'll always feel more like a website than a desktop application and it'll be stuck with the doglike, resource-heavy flash video player.

You may want to take a look at the source code for the Plex plugin for Crunchyroll. The current version of it uses the HLS streams (commonly used by CR's device apps) rather than the Flash streams.

Sorwen 
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Posted 9/29/14
For what it is worth add my voice to wanting an API.
Super Hero
josh 
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Posted 9/30/14
We love how proactive our users are to further create experiences around our service. Unfortunately our internal API is not externally documented or intended to be used by the public at this time.

There's certainly some value in creating a public API, and I'd love to see it happen, but as you can imagine we have many priorities to juggle internally and supporting external development would be difficult to fit onto our plate.

Please continue your support and submit your device requests!

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Posted 12/15/15
I definitely am totally on board for this, I do not use Mac, but an App for Windows 8.1 or 10 would be nice to. Plus I think it is a great idea for developers to have more freedom to do all of these things.

Here is a link to the device requests, I know this is an old post :C
http://www.crunchyroll.com/forumtopic-692671/what-device-do-you-want-crunchyroll-on?pg=48#52510279
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Posted 1/27/16
Count me in too.

I only need an API to browse the library and query user's queue. If the team can't do it at the moment, we're willing to help make it happen (at least I am ).
Posted 1/27/16
I would love this.
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