Become a MacRumors Supporter for $50/year with no ads, ability to filter front page stories, and private forums.

boltjames

macrumors 601
Original poster
May 2, 2010
4,876
2,851
I've got 2 HomePods out by the pool and 1 Apple TV in the adjacent great room.

In the Home app, I've created a Scene where all three devices start playing a specified playlist in Apple Music. Works fine on my iPhone. Tap the Shortcut, I'm in business.

When I'm floating in the pool, I would like to tap my Apple Watch Ultra, and:

1. Launch that Scene,
2. Have the music start playing on the HomePod's and Apple TV,
3. Be able to control the volume, and
4. Be able to change Playlists at will.

Can this be done? I can't figure out how.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Itinj24

Itinj24

Contributor
Nov 8, 2017
4,480
2,562
New York
BJ! Long time…

You have to accomplish this using AirPlay from your phone to the HomePods. I was doing this with a dumb amp powering dumbs speakers by my pool, that was connected to an AppleTV. The amp was plugged in with a smart plug.

I had a shortcut that: turned on the smart plug (which turned on the amp). The AppleTV would wake up. Started a playlist on my iPhone, passed the audio to the AppleTV using AirPlay and started playing. The now playing app on the AppleWatch would automatically open and I was able to do everything from the Apple Watch while I was in the pool. The shortcut was on my watch or can start it using Siri.

I’ve since deleted that shortcut since I removed the equipment by my pool for a renovation but I’ll go back and see how to do it again and report back.
 

Itinj24

Contributor
Nov 8, 2017
4,480
2,562
New York
So just checked the Shortcuts app. This is the function you have to use. Move from iPhone to the HomePod(s) of your choice. You can also select to “Show on Apple Watch” so you can run it from the Watch.

1686091323153.png
 

boltjames

macrumors 601
Original poster
May 2, 2010
4,876
2,851
BJ! Long time…

You have to accomplish this using AirPlay from your phone to the HomePods. I was doing this with a dumb amp powering dumbs speakers by my pool, that was connected to an AppleTV. The amp was plugged in with a smart plug.

I had a shortcut that: turned on the smart plug (which turned on the amp). The AppleTV would wake up. Started a playlist on my iPhone, passed the audio to the AppleTV using AirPlay and started playing. The now playing app on the AppleWatch would automatically open and I was able to do everything from the Apple Watch while I was in the pool. The shortcut was on my watch or can start it using Siri.

I’ve since deleted that shortcut since I removed the equipment by my pool for a renovation but I’ll go back and see how to do it again and report back.
Hey Itinnj, thanks!

Let me make sure I understand you clearly-

1. You are saying that I can't just tap something on my Apple Watch (like a Shortcut or a Scene) while lying in the pool. Instead I have to start the process by using my iPhone using an iPhone Shortcut?

2. And then you are saying once I do that initial iPhone launch of the Scene via the Shortcut I can then control the Scene from my Apple Watch (pause, skip, volume, etc) for the rest of the day while lying in the pool?

Or am I reading you wrong and I can do everything from a Shortcut on the Apple Watch itself (which is what I want to do )?
 

Itinj24

Contributor
Nov 8, 2017
4,480
2,562
New York
Hey Itinnj, thanks!

Let me make sure I understand you clearly-

1. You are saying that I can't just tap something on my Apple Watch (like a Shortcut or a Scene) while lying in the pool. Instead I have to start the process by using my iPhone using an iPhone Shortcut?

2. And then you are saying once I do that initial iPhone launch of the Scene via the Shortcut I can then control the Scene from my Apple Watch (pause, skip, volume, etc) for the rest of the day while lying in the pool?

Or am I reading you wrong and I can do everything from a Shortcut on the Apple Watch itself (which is what I want to do )?
Yes you can do it from the Watch. Just have to add the shortcut to the Watch and it should show up in the Watch’s Shortcuts app.

Just make a Shortcut to add whatever you want to it i.e. Open Apple Music, set the appropriate volume, turn on lighting, etc…

Only thing is I don’t know if HomePods can be controlled directly using Shortcuts. Might have to AirPlay from iPhone to HomePods. It’s been a couple years since I was using this so don’t know if it’s changed but I was definitely able to do what you want to do. I just can’t test it because my equipment has been removed for a renovation.
 
  • Like
Reactions: boltjames

boltjames

macrumors 601
Original poster
May 2, 2010
4,876
2,851
Yes you can do it from the Watch. Just have to add the shortcut to the Watch and it should show up in the Watch’s Shortcuts app.

Just make a Shortcut to add whatever you want to it i.e. Open Apple Music, set the appropriate volume, turn on lighting, etc…

Only thing is I don’t know if HomePods can be controlled directly using Shortcuts. Might have to AirPlay from iPhone to HomePods. It’s been a couple years since I was using this so don’t know if it’s changed but I was definitely able to do what you want to do. I just can’t test it because my equipment has been removed for a renovation.
Thanks, I will try your suggestions and see if it works. Will report back.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Itinj24

boltjames

macrumors 601
Original poster
May 2, 2010
4,876
2,851
Good luck. Let me know if you have any questions. You can PM as well.

So I just spent half an hour doing testing, here's what I can do:

Launch Shortcut from Apple Watch, it works, my two Homepods and one Apple TV all start playing the playlist. But I have no control from the Apple Watch. Can't skip songs. Can't change volume. Can't select another playlist.

Launch Shortcut from iPhone, it works of course, my two Homepods and one Apple TV all start playing the playlist. But I have no control from the Apple Watch. Can't skip songs. Can't change volume. Can't select another playlist. When I tap the "on Phone" option from the AW the AW shows me what's playing but doesn't allow me to pause, skip, control volume, nothing.

Launch Playlist from Apple Watch then choose Airplay, then wait for it to not connect to Airpods, then give me an error message, then eventually show the two Homepods and one Apple TV, then tap each individually, now I have full control on my Apple Watch, can pause, skip, change volume, change playlists, etc.

So unless I'm missing something or haven't set up my Scene or Shortcut properly, the only way I can lie in the pool and launch my backyard Homepod and Apple TV audio from Apple Music is to tap the watch like a madman for five minutes until, finally, the music starts playing on my watch and then I can Airplay it to each device. Any ideas?

EDIT: When it comes to the 'Hand off Playback" perhaps I'm doing something wrong. In the "from" I can choose iPhone, but in the "to" it only allows me to choose 1 of my 3 speakers, either 1 Homepod or the 1 Apple TV, but not all 3 playback devices simultaneously.
 

Itinj24

Contributor
Nov 8, 2017
4,480
2,562
New York
So I just spent half an hour doing testing, here's what I can do:

Launch Shortcut from Apple Watch, it works, my two Homepods and one Apple TV all start playing the playlist. But I have no control from the Apple Watch. Can't skip songs. Can't change volume. Can't select another playlist.

Launch Shortcut from iPhone, it works of course, my two Homepods and one Apple TV all start playing the playlist. But I have no control from the Apple Watch. Can't skip songs. Can't change volume. Can't select another playlist. When I tap the "on Phone" option from the AW the AW shows me what's playing but doesn't allow me to pause, skip, control volume, nothing.

Launch Playlist from Apple Watch then choose Airplay, then wait for it to not connect to Airpods, then give me an error message, then eventually show the two Homepods and one Apple TV, then tap each individually, now I have full control on my Apple Watch, can pause, skip, change volume, change playlists, etc.

So unless I'm missing something or haven't set up my Scene or Shortcut properly, the only way I can lie in the pool and launch my backyard Homepod and Apple TV audio from Apple Music is to tap the watch like a madman for five minutes until, finally, the music starts playing on my watch and then I can Airplay it to each device. Any ideas?

EDIT: When it comes to the 'Hand off Playback" perhaps I'm doing something wrong. In the "from" I can choose iPhone, but in the "to" it only allows me to choose 1 of my 3 speakers, either 1 Homepod or the 1 Apple TV, but not all 3 playback devices simultaneously.
Did you try the “Now Playing” app on the watch? That’s what I was using, not the Apple Music app. Use the Music app to change playlists. I just made one master playlist for all my poolside needs so never actually changed playlists but that should be able to be done with the music app on the watch.
 

boltjames

macrumors 601
Original poster
May 2, 2010
4,876
2,851
Did you try the “Now Playing” app on the watch? That’s what I was using, not the Apple Music app. Use the Music app to change playlists. I just made one master playlist for all my poolside needs so never actually changed playlists but that should be able to be done with the music app on the watch.
OMG. I was using the Now Playing function in Music on the Apple Watch. I didn’t know there was a Now Playing app. LOL. Will test it now. Jesus. Thanks again.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Itinj24

boltjames

macrumors 601
Original poster
May 2, 2010
4,876
2,851
@boltjames , did it work out for you using the Now Playing app?

Weather was bad the last week, today is perfect, so will be testing it all today.

What I did since then was this, and on the Apple Watch exclusively which is good progress:

1. In Music app, choose "On iPhone", select Playlist, start playing.

2. In Music app, tap AirPlay icon, then tap the 2 HomePod's and 1 Apple TV individually.

3. Close Music app, open Now Playing app, and now I can skip songs and control volume for all 3 speakers collectively.

What I am hoping to accomplish today is:

1. On Home app, tap my Scene and have all 3 devices start playing.

2. On Now Playing app, have control over skipping songs and volume for all 3 speakers collectively.

3. Find out if there is a way to control volume on each of the 3 speakers individually. (That's a big one if possible).
 
  • Like
Reactions: Itinj24
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.