Using Kaltura to Stream Movies on Recent Versions of macOS and iOS

Kaltura is the tool Trinity College uses to deliver streaming video for classes, and in general it is working pretty well on various browsers and operating systems. However, many people who access Kaltura on an up-to-date iOS or macOS device are greeted with a puzzling error:  “It seems your browser is blocking 3rd party session cookies which are required for the Kaltura application. To resolve this issue, please update your settings to allow 3rd party cookies.”

This is happening because in recent updates Apple have changed a default preference, turning on a new feature called “Prevent Cross-Site Tracking.” This breaks Kaltura, which needs to be able to set a cookie in your browser’s memory in order to recognize you as a valid user and to enable its other features.

Fortunately, it is relatively easy to solve this problem.

ON A MAC

This is dead-easy. First, if you use a different browser, there’s no problem at all. Chrome or Firefox work perfectly well. Second, if you use Safari, you can turn off the setting.

From the Safari menu on the top left of the screen, choose Preferences:

screenshot of safari menu

Then, in Preferences, click Privacy:

screenshot of Apple preferences

Uncheck the box, and you’re all set.

ON iOS

The settings labeled “Safari” actually govern every browser on an iOS device, the situation does seem puzzling. However, the setting is the same

The key is the setting right above Block All Cookies: In Settings in iOS, scroll until you see Safari. When you tap on it, scroll until you see settings for Privacy and Security:

iOS screenshot showing Kaltura-friendly Safari settings

As this screenshot shows, what you want is to turn Prevent Cross-Site Tracking off. Once you do that, Kaltura videos will play as expected.

Once you’ve started your Kaltura movie, you can turn the setting back on again, and it will continue to play.

If you’re concerned about privacy and site tracking iOS, I like 1Blocker X, available in the App Store. Similarly, you might try Firefox Focus as a privacy-friendly browser.

Anyone having trouble with Kaltura should enter a ticket, so that we can chase it down more effectively.

 

Jason Jones

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