Apple Releases New 11.4 Software for the HomePod Enabling Stereo Support, Multi-Room Audio Through AirPlay 2

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, May 29, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    #1
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    Alongside iOS 11.4, watchOS 4.3.1, and tvOS 11.4, Apple today released a new 11.4 software update designed for the HomePod, which introduces major new features for Apple's smart speaker.

    This is the second update that's been released for the HomePod since it became available for purchase back in February.

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    The new HomePod software will be installed automatically on the HomePod after you update to iOS 11.4, but you can also manually update and check your software version by following the instructions in our HomePod software how to.

    As Apple announced this morning, the new HomePod software, paired with iOS 11.4, introduces support for AirPlay 2 and HomePod stereo pairing.

    AirPlay 2 is an updated AirPlay protocol that's simpler, more advanced, and more robust, enabling multi-room audio capabilities. With AirPlay 2, you can play music in any room to any room, move music from one room to another room, or play the same song in multiple rooms using an iOS device through an app or Control Center, the Apple TV, the HomePod, or Siri voice commands on any of the aforementioned devices.

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    AirPlay 2 controls can be accessed within any app and in the Control Center on an iOS device running iOS 11.4. In the Control Center, you will see a list of all of the available AirPlay 2 devices in your home, and you can effortlessly send audio to a single device, to multiple devices, or switch audio between devices.

    The HomePod is the first AirPlay 2 device and one of the only AirPlay 2 devices on the market right now, but Apple plans to allow third-party speakers from companies like Sonos, Bose, Libratone, and more to add support for AirPlay 2.

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    Today's update also allows two HomePod speakers to be set up as a stereo pair, which is ideal for larger rooms as the arrangement offers up more room-filling sound. When paired, each HomePod is able to automatically adjust audio to take into account the other HomePod, for excellent sound from each device.

    The HomePods are able to take advantage of the built-in A8 chip in each speaker to play a left or right audio channel while also separating out ambient and direct energy for what Apple says is an almost three dimensional soundstage.

    Stereo pairing uses an Apple-designed wireless peer-to-peer direct link to allow the HomePods to communicate with one another and play music in sync. The two speakers will act as one when paired, and just one will respond to incoming Siri requests.

    Setting up stereo sound is as simple as turning on a second HomePod. Whenever a second device is set up, you'll be prompted to form a stereo pair with a popup interface, with this information also available in the HomePod's settings in the Home app.

    The new HomePod software also introduces one other small but important change -- it will allow users to check calendar appointments on the HomePod using Siri voice commands.

    The HomePod is currently available only in the United States, the UK, and Australia, but Apple will expand availability to Canada, France, and Germany on Monday, June 18. While the HomePod is not launching in Canada, France, and Germany until mid-June, new languages, including Canadian English, French, and German are available on the HomePod starting today and are accessible through the HomePod settings in the Home app on an iOS device.

    Article Link: Apple Releases New 11.4 Software for the HomePod Enabling Stereo Support, Multi-Room Audio Through AirPlay 2
     
  2. Macwick macrumors regular

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  3. JackieTreehorn macrumors 6502

    JackieTreehorn

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    #4
    I am not seeing it but I did just order a second Homepod :)
     
  4. killhippie macrumors regular

    killhippie

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    #4
    I was wondering about that.
     
  5. Attirex macrumors 6502

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    #5
    Lol. Only to appeal to millennials.
     
  6. iKaushal macrumors 6502

    iKaushal

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    #6
    Yeah. I tried searching a dozen times. But not available.
     
  7. kagharaht macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 7, 2007
    #7
    10.13.5? Don't see it...jump the gun maybe? Maybe later on since iMessage for the cloud has to work on the Mac also right?
     
  8. CamiMR macrumors 6502

    CamiMR

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    #8
    So the big question is, has the sound signature changed again?...
     
  9. KoolAid-Drink macrumors 65816

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    California
    #9
    10.13.5 wasn't released (yet). I wonder if it will be today. The bulk of my messages are on my Mac, dating back to 2014.
     
  10. Craiger macrumors 6502a

    Craiger

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    #10
    Wow that was a fast update. I'm not at home so I can't play with it though.
     
  11. dan9700 macrumors 68000

    dan9700

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    May 28, 2015
    #11
    can confirm the lag on airplay from mac to homepod seems to be better on the homepod, also seems to me bass is stronger like original
     
  12. ParanoidDroid macrumors 6502

    ParanoidDroid

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    #12
    Any news about AirPort Express ability to utilize AirPlay 2? :(
     
  13. killhippie macrumors regular

    killhippie

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    #13
    I’m sure macOS 10.13.4 was released later the same day when iOS 11.3 was released.
     
  14. eggyacid macrumors newbie

    eggyacid

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    #14
    Same here, was hoping Airport Express 2nd Gen will be supported :(
     
  15. HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604

    HobeSoundDarryl

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    #15
    That's no balancing: "Introducing the new, all-organic iPhone case. No landfill-damaging battery, no metals: just plants, dirt and 99.9% bio-degradable clay. Available now... or soon... or maybe by this time next year for only $349... $549 if you want the pot to be HomeKit-enabled too."

    All ;)
     
  16. eggyacid macrumors newbie

    eggyacid

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    #16
    when asked "Hey Siri, play 90's music everywhere" it will only play on 3 HomePods but not AppleTVs... am I saying it wrong?
     
  17. MacNewsOverload macrumors newbie

    MacNewsOverload

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    #17
    Any confirmation of Beats1 radio playing to multiple locations via AirPlay?
     
  18. Hanterdro macrumors regular

    Hanterdro

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    #18
    Is there some trick that the Apple TV shows in the Home App?
     
  19. n-ick macrumors newbie

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    Feb 15, 2018
    #19
    Big improvement with the HP when in stereo mode.
     
  20. Jamie0003 macrumors 6502a

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    Norfolk, UK
    #20
    Excellent, Apple just sold two more Homepods, although there's still something missing that would seal the deal for me: being able to control the Apple TV via Siri on the HomePod. I know this is possible via airplay but I have a sound system in my living room, and want to be able to pause the TV show or whatever I'm watching when I get a phonecall for example.
     
  21. spazzcat macrumors 68020

    spazzcat

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    #21
    Did you update phone and ATV?
     
  22. jackietreeh0rn macrumors newbie

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    Apr 13, 2018
    #22
    This is what I'm interested to know, too.
     
  23. zaneliu macrumors 6502

    zaneliu

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    Jan 27, 2013
    Location:
    Berkeley
    #23
    Speed has definitely improved like 2x on AirPlay 2 from iPhone. Now I'd like to see AirPlay 2 make its way to my Mac iTunes as well
     
  24. ersan191 macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 26, 2013
    #24
    Can confirm it works fine
     
  25. Fozziebear71 macrumors 6502

    Fozziebear71

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    Sep 23, 2014
    #25
    I've been waiting. Looks like I will be ordering several Homepods now.
     

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